Monday, February 24, 2014

/ / Rachel By Jill Eileen Smith Book Review / /

/ / Rachel / /

/ / Wives of the Patriarchs / /

{Review Written By Madi}
Book Title: Rachel
Author: Jill Eileen Smith
Source: Revell Buzz
Number Of Pages: 314
ISBN: 978-0-8007-3431-2
Publisher: Revell
Year Of Publication: 2014
Rating: Four Out Of Five Stars

/ / Book Description / /

Beautiful Rachel wants nothing more than for her older half sister Leah to wed and move out of their household. Maybe then she would not feel so scrutinized, so managed, so judged. Plain Leah wishes her father Laban would find a good man for her, someone who would love her alone and make her his only bride. Unbeknownst to either of them, Jacob is making his way to their home, trying to escape a past laced with deceit and find the future God has promised him.

But the past comes back to haunt Jacob when he finds himself on the receiving end of treachery and the victim of a cruel bait and switch. The man who wanted only one woman will end up with sisters who have never gotten along and now must spend the rest of their lives sharing a husband. In the power struggles that follow, only one woman will triumph . . . or will she?

Combining meticulous research with her own imaginings, Jill Eileen Smith not only tells one of the most famous love stories of all time but will manage to surprise even those who think they know the story inside and out.

/ / Book Review / /

The story of Rachel and Jacob has always been one of my all time favorite Bible stories. I remember reading it early last year and having one verse in particular really stick with me; "So Jacob served seven years for Rachel, and they seemed to him but a few days because of his love for her." (Genesis 29:20). How much love is expressed in that simple sentence! Most guys are afraid to even look my daddy in the eye and shake his hand, much less work seven years for him in order to gain a relationship with me. Of course, things were different back in Jacob and Rachel's day. A bride price was required if you wanted to get yourself a decent woman, and if you didn't have it, you would sometimes get the opportunity to work for her (such as Jacob did). I love the insight that the author brought to this story. I've often thought about what life would have been like for Jacob and Rachel, but I never really factored in Rachel's sister, Leah, and Jacob's two other wives. What must it have been like for Rachel and Leah to share a husband with each other and with two other women? The Bible clearly expresses that Rachel is Jacob's favored wife, even though Leah was his first. What must it have been like for Leah and the two other women to feel unloved and unwanted by their husband? This novel definitely got me to thinking about how I would have responded if I were put in this situation. Probably not with as much grace as Leah and Rachel did, that's for sure. Which brings something else to mind, in the beginning of the book, it clearly shows the tension between these two sisters, but toward the end the two came together as a family always should. This book starts when Jacob finds Rachel at the well, and ends at Rachel's death. A lot happened in that time if you think about it. I encourage you to go back a read Genesis if you haven't read it recently, it is a truly inspirational piece of history, and this author did a fair job with it. There were, however, a few things that I did not like about this book. For one, when it came to Rachel, Jacob was a total pushover. That's just not how things worked back then. The man of the family had the final (and ONLY) say-so. The other thing that I didn't particularly enjoy was the fact that it got a little . . . intense sometimes. I mean, I was expecting a romance, but maybe not one with such . . . insight into the workings of their marriage. Don't get me wrong, it never got THAT detailed, but it got too close to my liking. That being said, I know that those kind of things don't bother some people as much as it does others. Over all, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone that is 16+ years of age.
~The Literary Maidens
Note: I was provided with a free copy of this book by Revell Buzz in exchange for my honest opinion. I was not further reimbursed to review this product and all thoughts and sentiments expressed above are completely my  own and unbiased. 

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