Rachel by Jill Eileen Smith
Wives of the Patriarchs, #3
Genre: Christian Historical Fiction – Biblical (Old Testament)
Pages: 320 Trade Paperback
Date Published: February 2014
Publisher: Revell Books
Can true love overcome a legacy of betrayal?
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.
I truly enjoy Biblical Christian Historical Fiction, this is the genre that I first started with when I became so passionate about reading. Interestingly enough, the story that I was reading at the time was a modified timeline and location of Rachel (or Jamie, Rose, and Lena in Scotland). From the past reads, I’ve enjoyed the writing of Jill Eileen Smith, but not quite as much as Mesu Andrews, however this was a great book, a truly good read.
As a student of the Bible and biblical women, I have never been much a fan of Rachel. I always found myself feeling for Leah and saw Rachel as a selfish child of a woman. Interestingly I never put much blame on Jacob, after all wasn’t he a chosen one of God? Reading Jill’s version of the Rachel story is an interesting experience. This time I really feel like I have more of an insight into Rachel’s perception of the events that occurred and an optional theory that perhaps Leah wasn’t quite so ignorant in her participation.
When a story of Biblical Fiction has me turning pages with eager enjoyment to see what happens next (even when I know the story forward and backward already!) and then I’m left on the last page with a desire to crack open my Bible and read the story in Scripture verse and then even a further desire to grab my Chronological Bible and read the stories before and after in time… that’s when you know you’ve got a book meeting its purpose.
As a reader, I was fascinated to see these biblical characters through a new lens and to really see the child Joseph when I always think of him as an ignorant self-absorbed teen and later tortured man chosen of God and a perfect example of faith in the long run. Now I need more Biblical Fiction, what’s next?
I received this product free for the purpose of reviewing it. I received no other compensation for this review. The opinions expressed in this review are my personal, honest opinions. Your experience may vary. Please read my full disclosure policy for more details.
Jill Eileen Smith is the author of the bestselling Wives of King David series and of Sarai and Rebekah in the Wives of the Patriarchs series. Her research into the lives of biblical women has taken her from the Bible to Israel, and she particularly enjoys learning how women lived in Old Testament times. Jill lives with her family in southeast Michigan. Learn more at www.jilleileensmith.com.