Reinventing Rachel by Alison Strobel
Published 2010 by David C. Cook, 353 pages
Genre: Contemporary women’s fiction, Christian

Californian Rachel Westing has been a good Christian girl, doing all the things she’s expected to do, and God’s responded with good things for her. Then all of a sudden everything comes crashing down. Her mentor checks herself into rehab for prescription drug abuse. Her parents separate, talking divorce. And Rachel’s fiance reveals he’s been shacking up–with her roommate.

What’s a good Christian girl to do? This one abandons God and flees to Chicago to live with a childhood friend who isn’t a Christian. Daphne is fun and confident, and she sets out to help Rachel reinvent herself. But tragedy strikes. What will Rachel do now? Who will she turn to?

This book is skilfully written, with three-dimensional characters motivated in convincing ways, full of cliffhangers that keep the story moving. Strobel, daughter of writer Lee Strobel, is a master of the pen.

What I like most about this book is the analysis of the mindset of the good Christian, as I am calling it, someone who expects God to respond with blessings when the person has been attending church, singing in choir, and all the other external trappings of religion.

The only tiny flaw for me concerns the mentor, the one who goes into rehab at the beginning of the book. I wish her story had been fleshed out more, considering her significance in the plot. BUT this is no reason to not read this book! It’s a very good one!

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