Rachel (Wives of the Patriarchs Book #3): A Novel

Rachel (Wives of the Patriarchs Book #3): A Novel

by Jill Eileen Smith
4.7 14

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Rachel 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Fitzysmom More than 1 year ago
I grew up going to Sunday School so the story of Rachel, Leah and Jacob is not a new one to me. However, through the wonderful writing of Jill I was still enthralled by the retelling. I found myself anticipating what was next as if I didn't already know what was about to happen.  Jill did a masterful job of portraying the struggles of a household that contains two wives. Can you just imagine the tension, especially when the second wife is actually the favored wife? Add to all of that the fact that the two women are also sisters . . . drama at its finest! When the two concubines are added into the mix the situation is almost unbearable. While this book is primarily from Rachel's perspective I also enjoyed how Jill delved into the background of Jacob and his brother Esau. I found it interesting to ponder how Jacob really felt about his deceit where his brother and father were concerned. I had never really thought about him being introspective about his deception as compared to that of Laban. This was a quick read, but it was full of beautiful complexities that made me once again consider the Father's plan in our lineage. If you are at all interested in Historical Fiction and specifically Biblical Fiction, I believe you will really enjoy not only this book but this series as a whole. I received a copy of this book to facilitate my review.
luv2read30 More than 1 year ago
“Rachel” is another excellent book in the Biblical Fiction genre by Jill Eileen Smith. “  Ms. Smith has crafted a beautifully woven story full of fact and was able to use the fiction aspect to enrich the story without losing any content! Often times the Bible is silent about the feelings of the people that being written about, but this is a rare story in which we are given many details even about the women and the struggle their marriage was! I think what surprised me the most about the book is how much sympathy I felt for each of the characters. I cannot even begin to imagine the heartbreak that Rachel would have felt when Leah wed Jacob first, or then year after year as she watched Leah have baby after baby. Ms. Smith does an excellent job of filling in what everyday life would be like as Leah, watching your husband devote all of his time to your sister, knowing he will never love you. Then poor Jacob is left in the middle being pulled in two directions.  Although God’s hand of blessing was on this family and from Jacob came the twelve tribes of Israel, it really is a sad story. As the writer points out Jacob’s life is full of struggle much of which he brings on himself. There are so many wonderful lessons to be gleaned from this story, too many for one review; lessons of God’s grace and mercy, forgiveness, leaving the past behind and starting fresh, and also some great ways not to parent!  Ms. Smith also touches on an aspect I have often thought about, why would Jacob so obviously show favoritism to Joseph knowing the consequences first hand? So many good thoughts that this book brings out! I highly recommend this book and any others by this author, as everything I have ever read from her has been excellent! This book was provided to me for free from Revell publishing, through netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.  
TonyaTells More than 1 year ago
Can true love overcome a legacy of betrayal? Rachel wants nothing more than for her older half sister Leah to wed and move out of their household. Leah wishes her father would find a good man who would love her alone. 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. The man who wanted only one woman ends 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, bestselling author 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 knew a little about Rachel/Jacob/Leah but this book really made me think. Rachel and Jacob were in love. They thought Rachel's father had promised to give Rachel to Jacob after working seven years for him. But Laban is sneaky and he makes Jacob seal the deal with his older unmarried daughter, so Jacob has to keep Leah too. So now he has to work seven more years for Laban to give him Rachel too. This story is fascinating. I really enjoyed it, for the most part. It seemed in areas to drag for me, so that is why I gave it four stars instead of five. I did enjoy it though, but sometimes, I wondered if it had a modern touch, rather than what they really did and thought? That put me off a bit as well. Team Leah here though. I thought that Rachel used her wild ways a bit too much! I received a copy of this book, in exchange for an honest opinion.
LovenGod More than 1 year ago
Jill Eileen Smith is back with another book based on Biblical characters.  I am not sure why I didn't connect with this book more.  I have loved Jill's books and always found them enjoyable, but this story just didn't ever click for me.  I found Leah, unlikable, and had trouble ever pitying her, like I do when I read the story in the Bible.  While the writing was good, the connection wasn't there for me.  Not my favorite of Jill's books.  4 stars because Jill is an excellent writer and the book was good, just unable to connect personally.  This book was provided for review purposes only, no payment was received for this review.
VicG More than 1 year ago
Jill Eileen Smith in her new book, “Rachel” Book Three in her Wives of the Patriarchs series published by Revell gives us a fictional account of what might have happened with her life and that of Jacob. From the Back Cover:  Can true love overcome a legacy of betrayal? Rachel wants nothing more than for her older half sister Leah to wed and move out of their household. Leah wishes her father would find a good man who would love her alone. 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. The man who wanted only one woman ends 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, bestselling author 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. Jacob has been sent away to his uncle because Jacob’s brother wants to kill him.  While there he meets and falls madly in love with Rachel, his uncle’s daughter.  He works seven years so that they can be married and then he is tricked into marrying Rachel’s older sister, Leah.  In itself this is quite a story but there is more to the story than that, much more and Ms. Smith has done a wonderful job of bring Rachel to life.  There is lots of information that I never considered and what Ms. Smith has offered us gives us much to think about.  I like “Rachel” by Jill Eileen Smith because of the depth of research that was put into the writing and the fact that everything that is in The Bible is in Ms. Smith’s story but with much more detail, emotion and back story that The Bible leaves out.  Ms. Smith tells us the events from the Bible but from Rachel’s viewpoint and it lends a new flavor to the telling.  Ms. Smith makes Rachel and Jacob come alive and we get a chance to walk with them and share their adventures intimately.  We see what they see, we feel what they feel simply because Ms. Smith is such a great storyteller. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell Publishers.   I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
CharityU-Austenite More than 1 year ago
After finishing Jill’s books, I am always amazed by her attention to detail. In addition to that, I always feel like I really have gained a great insight into whichever characters were featured. This book was no exception! I found myself completely empathizing with Rachel and the anger she harbored, and with Leah and the desperation and pain that pierced her. I definitely felt a connection with each of them, and with Jacob. It takes skill to establish such a connection, but Jill has it down to a science! As is usual with Jill’s books, this one was Biblically accurate and even had direct quotes for some of it. It kept me reading (and up too late). I highly recommend it to all Biblical and historical fiction fans!
Writingsof_Rosie More than 1 year ago
A heartbreaking fictional account of Jacob, Rachel, and Leah's life up to Benjamin's birth. First off, I must say that I admire Smith's work. She presents three points of view in Rachel: Jacob, Rachel, and Leah. She did an amazing job. There is no easy way I could verbalize what I expected going into Rachel, but I am very pleased with the outcome. Smith personifies each widely recognized figure in a way we can relate to them. My heart broke so many times for both Rachel and Leah. I think it's safe to say Smith avoided bias. We are not told much about daily affairs within Jacob's household, but I believe it is a safe assumption that the first few years things were tense and rough. Not only for the women but for poor Jacob as well. We'll never know the kind of people they were until we get to heaven, but I would like to think that Smith got a lot of things right. With every new release, she continues to impress me and I am torn as to whether Rebekah or Rachel is my favorite. To conclude, I am a very picky reader when it comes to Biblical fiction and I am pleased to say that Smith meets all, if not most, of my high standards. I highly recommend this series in particular to fellow Biblical fiction fans out there. (I cannot speak about the Wives of King David series as I have not read them yet.) Smith does not shy away from topics spoken about in the Bible, but she does treat the more questionable content with delicate care. Jacob has four wives. We are told about him "going into their tent", but we are not given much detail, save for Leah and Rachel's wedding night where we are briefly told about the taking off of Rachel's robe and Jacob's ritual belt. Murder is mentioned and a in a city near Jacob's camp there is a festival of virgins. I received this book from Revell in return for an honest review of my opinions, which I have done. Thanks!
MyBookAddictionandMore More than 1 year ago
RACHEL by Jill Eileen Smith is another exciting inspirational Historical Fiction set in 1879 BC. #3 in the "Wives of the Patriarchs" but can be read as a stand alone. See "Rebekah" and "Sarai". What a joy to read! Ms. Smith, makes these biblical characters jump off the page and come to life. She weaves facts, with fiction and tell some of the most romantic, dramatic stories and brings the Bible to life. Filled with treachery, secrets,betrayal, deceit, faith, healing, forgiveness, love,conflict and sibling rivalry. The agony of two sisters, and the grief that follows. "Rachel" is the final installment of this series. What a powerful story from beginning to end. Ms. Smith is a wonderful storyteller and brings the people of the Bible to life. A must read for anyone who enjoys historical fiction and a great story! Received for an honest review from the publisher. *Coming in February from Revell Books* RATING: 4.5 HEAT RATING: SWEET REVIEWED BY: AprilR, courtesy of My Book Addiction and More
ACS_Book_Blogger More than 1 year ago
Rachel is a lovely young lady who loves adventure. She loves helping her father and brother's with the sheep. One day she goes to the well and meets a handsome young man named Jacob. He ends up being her cousin. Rachel and Jacob fall in love right away. Jacob makes a deal with her father, Laban, to work seven years for her hand in marriage. Rachel has an older sister named Leah who is not married. In the culture of Biblical times, it would look bad on the family for the younger sister to marry first. So Laban goes to Leah and tells her that she is going to marry Jacob. Leah tries to argue with him but to no avail. When Laban tells Rachel, she can not believe that her father would do this to her and Jacob. Laban has Leah keep her identity secret through out the wedding festivities. When Jacob awoke the morning after his wedding and saw Leah instead of Rachel he was furious. He confronted Laban and said he had to make things right. Laban tells him that he could marry Rachel at the end of the wedding week if he promised to work another seven years. Jacob agrees and at the end of the week marries Rachel. Now Rachel has to share the man she loves with her sister. It was a struggle from day one. Rachel is unable to have children and watches her sister Leah have four. It causes Rachel much grief and bitterness. The sisters are in a constant battle of trying to win Jacob's attention. Finally Rachel has a son for Jacob. This son's name is Joseph and Jacob favors him over all of Leah's children. Many years pass before she is able to have another son. Rachel dies during his birth. This sons name was Benjamin. I would recommend this book. It was a very good take on what life would have been like for Rachel. DISCLOSURE: A complimentary copy was provided by Revell a division of Baker Publishing in exchange for our honest review. Opinions expressed are solely those of the reviewer. No compensation was received for this review.
Theophilusfamily More than 1 year ago
 Richie Mullins liked to say that he loved to read the Bible, and that many people didn't like the way he read it, but he couldn't help it. He said he loved to read the Bible and look for all the weird people in there, and as he read he was always amazed that God would choose such odd, crazy, broken, unpleasant people to be His!  Lets get one thing straight: the story of Jacob, Leah, and Rachel is one of the weirdest. Reading it in novel form reminded me of that. And that's what makes this story so cool: it's true.  Man goes to his cousin's household to find a wife (?) and he falls in love with the youngest of two sisters.  The father-in-law manages a massive sleight of hand and switches daughters for the honeymoon. Jacob realizes that he's wedded to Leah, throws a fit, and demands his first choice. Dad agrees, and both girls and Jacob and two maids all live the historical version of Downton Abbey.  You know, people have long dismissed Christianity as an invention designed to subdue people into behaving. That's preposterous, because the point of Christianity is that model citizens don't win. Weird people caught up in Grace is what Christianity is about.  By weird I mean dysfunctional. People with battles to fight. People who make bad choices. People who do downright evil things.  In the Kingdom of God an ex-con who's repented is closer to Heaven than the suburban businessman who only commits respectable sins.  That's the insanity and joy of the love of God. It is there for Rachel who shared a husband with her sister, and for Jacob who lived a strange life, and for me and for you!  This story must have been really neat to write, to explore the lives of the patriarchs and their wives.  It must have been fascinating to imagine how a woman like Rachel would respond to her culture, her husband, her children, and her God.  It is something to think about: that those women in the Bible, who exist as names in the historical record, they were real. They felt disappointment and and pain and hope and joy and longings. They walked on the sands of this earth and they looked at the stars.  That's what makes Biblical fiction so good. To remember the flesh-and-blood life of the characters as you read.  Thank you Revell for my review copy of Rachel.
MelissaF More than 1 year ago
I. Loved. This. Book. Oh my, this book is a mess and I mean that in the best, dysfunctional way possible. I don't know about you, but I have read the story of Jacob, Rachel, and Leah many, many times and thought how horrible for them. I never liked Leah much because she went along with this plan to replace Rachel and then she had all these babies while Rachel couldn't. The way Jill writes this books had me completely torn. I still didn't like Leah most of the time yet my heart hurt for her because she really did just want to be loved. Rachel is depicted at times as being a bit selfish and I didn't even like her all of the time but then again, my heart was torn for her because she had her love stolen from her. She dreamed of her wedding night with Jacob and being his first love and she didn't get to have that. Although Jacob clearly favored her and didn't care if she had children or not. He loved her so much. I never thought about how Jacob was really used as a pawn between these two women. When they couldn't have children they made him sleep with their maids. The way Jill writes about it Jacob didn't want to do that but it is the wife's choice in which case he can't refuse. As I was reading about all these babies Leah had I went to the Bible and re-read the story because I knew Rachel had Joseph but I couldn't remember where in the line-up. And...hello....Joseph is pretty dear to my heart since he was the one who said Genesis 5020!!!! Yay Joseph. It's pretty amazing to think that as I am reading this story (which is fiction but based on true events) that Rachel's child would have such a profound impact on my life and be the foundation of my blog. So cool. Isn't God awesome how He can use things from so long ago to reach us now. The Bible is timeless. I could go on and on but you just really need to read this one for yourself. It is so good and so messed up and isn't that they way life is? We are one big mess but God loves us anyway. A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
amybooksy More than 1 year ago
Rachel brings to life the Biblical story of Rachel, Jacob and Leah. While reading, I could just feel the anguish that Rachel felt at the betrayal of her own sister, Leah. But later, I felt sorry for Leah and at times I felt like crying for her.  I like seeing how this Biblical story plays out in a more detail. I highly enjoyed it. If you enjoy Biblical Fiction, then this is the book for you. 5 stars.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Delightful read~I am a picky reader and this kept my attention the whole time. Inspirational