Friday, July 12, 2013

Jolina Petersheim's The Outcast ~ Reviewed

By: Jolina Petersheim
Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 400
Vendor: Tyndale House
Publication Date: 2013

ISBN: 141437934X




Raised in an Old Order Mennonite community, Rachel Stoltzfus is a strong-willed single woman, content living apart from mainstream society until whispers stir the moment her belly swells with new life. Refusing to repent and name the partner in her sin, Rachel feels the wrath of the religious sect as she is shunned by those she loves most. She is eventually coerced into leaving by her brother-in-law, the bishop.
The Outcast is a modern day re-telling of The Scarlet Letter.  Rachel Stoltzfus was raised in an Old Order Mennonite Community, along with her twin sister, Leah.  Shortly after Leah marries an older widower, Tobias, she asks Rachel to come live with them, as she is having a difficult pregnancy.  By the time Leah’s baby is born, it becomes apparent that Rachel is also expecting, though she is un-married and refuses to reveal who the father is.  She is kicked out of her sister’s home and left to fend for herself.  As more secrets are revealed, other tragedies present themselves, threatening Leah, Rachel and Tobias’ relationships even further.
I REALLY enjoyed this book.  It’s been years since I’ve read The Scarlet Letter but I really enjoyed the parallels between the two stories.  I also thought it interesting that the author chose the names Rachel and Leah for the twins.  It takes you back to the Bible, with the struggle between Jacob and Esau, and Rachel and Leah.  I really wasn’t sure what was going to happen next and I had a really hard time putting the book down.  This was a great read!

Reviewed by: Sarah Meyers

1 comment:

Jolina Petersheim said...

Thank you so much for the wonderful review! I appreciate it very much!