In Jennifer Mathieu’s second novel, Devoted, we meet Rachel Walker, a seventeen year old girl, who is devoted to god. She and her family attend Calvary Christian Church and she prays daily. Rachel helps take care of her younger bothers and sisters (there are ten walker children in all), dresses modestly and is preparing to be a wife and mother. It’s all Rachel has known her whole life but Rachel is curious about the world that exists out side of her church and she’s not finding the answers in her homeschooling textbooks or in the bible. Until now, she’s always found comfort in her beliefs but will those beliefs be what destroys her?
You know the Duggar family? The ones from that TLC show and who always seem to be caught up in some kind of scandal? Yeah, that one. I first heard the author speak about this book at Teen Book Con 2015 and she described it as “Duggar gone wild.” I was immediately sold on the book. Also, I should point out this was right before all they were caught up in all the scandals.
The writing is just fabulous. There’s no better way to describe it. The story is written in such a way where you’re hooked from the very first page. She brings the characters and the world to life. I also love the way that she weaves in background information and how everything mentioned in the background information comes in to play somewhere else in the story. I wasn’t able to put this book down.
The thing I love about Devoted along with Jennifer’s other novel, The Truth About Alice is that while they are the contemporary, character driven stories that I love there’s a unique element to them that makes me think, not just about the story but makes me question my own life. I read Alice last year and her story has stuck with me. I have a feeling Rachel’s story will stick with me too.
I gave devoted 4/5 stars and I very highly recommend that you check out Devoted and if you haven’t read Jennifer’s other book, The Truth About Alice, that you check that one out too.