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Devoted

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really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  1,297 ratings  ·  339 reviews
Rachel Walker is devoted to God. She prays every day, attends Calvary Christian Church with her family, helps care for her five younger siblings, dresses modestly, and prepares herself to be a wife and mother who serves the Lord with joy. But Rachel is curious about the world her family has turned away from, and increasingly finds that neither the church nor her homeschool ...more
Paperback, 306 pages
Expected publication: January 10th 2019 by Hodder Children's Books (first published June 2nd 2015)
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Jenni Frencham I'm not sure exactly what you're asking here. Rachel certainly encountered many types of people, both kind and unkind, and she left her old life…moreI'm not sure exactly what you're asking here. Rachel certainly encountered many types of people, both kind and unkind, and she left her old life behind after her birthday because that's the only time she could. She had to wait until she was officially an adult before she could enroll herself in school, etc.(less)
Jenni Frencham It is contemporary. It might seem historical because of the family's manner of dress, etc., but it's contemporary.
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Emily May
Feb 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What is it I plan to do with my one wild and precious life?
My wild life?
My precious life?


Jennifer Mathieu has done it again.

I was really pleasantly surprised by the author's debut novel - The Truth About Alice - and the way she flawlessly crafted many different characters and their perspectives, breaking apart high school cliques and stereotypes to sensitively portray each one as a human being. Her second book is just as good.

Here she returns with a story about seventeen-year-old Rachel Walker
...more
Giselle
An unsolicited Advanced Reader Copy was provided by the publisher for review.

Rachel is a Christian living with her ten siblings and parents, she has no time for herself. Constantly taking care of her younger siblings and being a good girl so she could be married to a boy. Her parents tell her what to do, how to act, what to think. When her curiosity gets the better of her she reaches out to someone from her community that escaped their rigid lifestyle. Only to find out she wants out to live her
...more
Nicole Pramik
Note: Long review but this book was worth it! :)

As a Christian (and a former homeschooled kid), I always feel a bit apprehensive any time a fictional story comes out that focuses on a small segment of the "Christian" or homeschooling community. (I say "Christian" in quotes because these sects, cults, etc. do not follow Scriptural teachings and, instead, twist the Bible to fit their needs.) My fear is that people who are not religious will assume the worst about Christians and think all families
...more
Annamaria
"What is it I plan to do with my one wild and precious life? "

I devoured this book! This was not my usual read but it stuck with me in ways I didn't think were possible.

I'm an atheist, still I liked the way the author didn't shame on religion and religious people. What the book criticizes is bigotry and oppression and the way religion, if manipulted in the wrong ways, brainwashes both adult and younger people.
I loved Rachel so much, she was such a relatable character. She's part of a Calvary Ch
...more
Ashley Brooks
Jun 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
4.5
I've been looking forward to this book for so long and it was definitely worth the wait.
Will write more tomorrow.
Louisa
Jennifer Mathieu is a YA author to watch. The Truth About Alice was similarly short in length, yet both books pack such a punch you're left in a daze of "how did I not read this before?".

What might my future husband think about the fact that I've read A Wrinkle in Time three times in the past few months and that I taught myself algebra? My future husband. I've been hearing about him since I was nine or ten, a shadowy figure God will deliver to me one day. He'll want a woman who submits to his a
...more
Kelly
Rachel Walker grew up in a Duggar-like family and decides she's ready to leave. So she does. This is the story of her making the choice and the consequences thereafter.

It's respectful of the religious movement while also respectful of Rachel needing to claim her own life for herself.

This ticked all my boxes, was well-written, well-paced, and totally fills the Duggar hole in my heart. Religious cult books are my jam, but it's even more so when both the person fleeing and the belief system itsel
...more
Layla
Mar 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, read-2015
I don’t know how to convince you to read Devoted, but I think you should. It’s not the sort of thing I usually pick up – I do read broadly, but my favorite books are more likely to be sci-fi or fantasy than contemporaries – but I’m glad that I did, in this case.

Devoted hasn’t seemed to receive much attention so far and I’m not sure why? Because this book is an excellent, though very quiet, character study. And in addition to this, it’s beautifully written and it engages with many issues that are
...more
Nasty Lady MJ
Also see the review and others on my blog.


I think we should address the elephant in the room-The Duggars.

Even though this book tells the story who believes in a similar version of Christianity than them I’m not going to try not to limit my references to those morons throughout this review (it will probably inevitably happen though and probably a lot given the circumstances since I will be talking about the quiverfull movement).

Coming into this reading experience, my only knowledge of them was of
...more
Sam
Huge thank you to Raincoast Canada for this ARC!

I fell deeply in love with Jennifer Mathieu's first novel The Truth About Alice last year and remembered being completely enamoured by her writing. There's a raw and rich quality to her work, and she leaves the reader with so much to think about both as the story progresses and when it ends. Colour me excited when Devoted showed up in the mail, because I admit, books on religion are something that always make me a touch nervous.

Devoted is written w
...more
Drew
Sep 23, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5

Devoted is a quiet, moving, and eye-opening book by the author of the spectacular novel The Truth About Alice. It really was unlike anything I expected, and I think the summary gives you the wrong idea. I thought this was going to be a Christian-hating book about a girl who turns her back on her faith, and for that reason I wasn't interested in reading it, but I'm so glad I gave it a try because it completely took me by surprise.

I'm not sure if Jennifer Mathieu is a Christian or not, but I lo
...more
Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)
This book was amazing. I am always so fascinated by a religious cult situation, and while the Walker family may not be in a cult in the typical sense of the word, they are clearly not in a healthy situation. The girls are treated as second class citizens, only existing to do stuff for the men and make babies. Rachel doesn’t even have much of an education, just enough so that she can teach her younger siblings. All the people in the church are kept as sheltered as possible from the outside world, ...more
Rin W. Vitale
Summary:
Rachel Walker is devoted to God. She prays every day, attends Calvary Christian Church with her family, helps care for her five younger siblings, dresses modestly, and prepares herself to be a wife and mother who serves the Lord with joy. But Rachel is curious about the world her family has turned away from, and increasingly finds that neither the church nor her homeschool education has the answers she craves. Rachel has always found solace in her beliefs, but now she can’t shake the fe
...more
Audrey Laurey
Aug 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Devoted is the story of Rachel, a 17yo girl growing up in the Quiverfull Movement who is maturing to an age where she should be prepared to be the perfect "helpmeet". Something Quiverfull women are primed for since the day of their conception (i.e. Devout unquestioning wife, mother to as many children as her womb can produce, homeschool teacher, et al).

If you are like me, you can't stop reading about the Quiverfull Movement, or the Duggar's. The brainwashing, the victims of sexual abuse taking
...more
Erin Lynn
Another powerful book from Mathieu, but in a more serene way than her debut, The Truth About Alice. It's only been a few short months since I've read Mathieu's stunning debut, The Truth About Alice, but I can tell you that the synopsis for this book, Devoted, is what really pushed me to read Alice. I don't know why - because I'm not a fan of books about religion - I had to read this book, but I did. I am one hundred percent glad that I read it because it's eye-opening and beautifully troubling. ...more
Paige (Illegal in 3 Countries)
See more of my reviews on The YA Kitten! my copy was an ARC I got from the publisher for review.

Diversity Rating: 0 – What Diversity?

Racial-Ethnic:
0
QUILTBAG: 0
Disability: 1 (Rachel’s mom has postpartum depression)
Intersectionality: 0


Much to the misfortune of readers everywhere who are likely finding this novel in the midst of the Duggar sexual abuse revelations, Devoted was written and came out before any of that came to light. The thought of how many ways Jennifer Mathieu could have taken apar
...more
Max Baker
Jun 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a spectacular book. Seriously, even if you absolutely detest religion I would still recommend this book. It's not about how bad religion and God are or that there's only one way to worship your god. This book is about trying to find answers and coming to terms with what you've been taught and how you lived your life may not be what's right for you.

Rachel Walker lives in a very tight knit conservative Christian family. She has nine siblings and is expecting to cook, clean, and be a gener
...more
PinkAmy loves  \u0026#x1f495; books\u0026#x1f4d6;, cats\u0026#x1f63b; and naps\u0026#x1f6cf;
5 of 5 A++++

At age seventeen, Rachel Walker begins to question the strict rules of her fundamentalist puritanical church, where fear and shame are preached from the pulpit and at home. She's homeschooled, prevented from reading books other than textbooks and the bible. When rumors that a troubled girl named Lauren is back in town, Rachel sneaks onto the computer and finds Lauren's blog about running away and leaving the church she calls a cult. For the first time, Rachel imagines a life where sh
...more
Stefani Sloma
Mar 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You can read this review and more on my blog, Caught Read Handed.

I’ve been trying to put into words WHY I loved this book so much for over a week now. It’s difficult to write a review for a book that you just loved so much, but I’m going to try.

Devoted, Jennifer Mathieu’s second book, is completely and utterly fascinating. It’s about Rachel, a girl who’s grown up in an uber-religious household (she’s a member of the Quiverfull movement). She’s homeschooled and as the oldest currently living in t
...more
Estelle
The people who highly recommended this book did not lie one bit.

Rachel has grown up in the Quiverfull movement with her belief in God leading her entire life and her future set in stone: she is to be a good wife and a great mom. Probably as soon as she turns 18. As she cares for all of her siblings and even helps homeschool them, her mind is starting to wander about what if. She loves to read; she wonders about community college. But there is no one in her family that she can talk to about these
...more
Shelley
**I received this book for free from Roaring Brook Press in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.**

*Genre* Young Adult, Contemporary, Religion
*Rating* 3.5

*MY Thoughts*

17-year old Rachel Walker belongs to a family that is 100 percent dedicated to God, their church, while also being devoted to adhering to what their fathers and preachers tell them to do. Rachel and the women of the church truly believe that obeying males is their Go
...more
Mississippi Library Commission
First, let us just say that Jennifer Mathieu is on our watch list. First with The Truth About Alice, and now with Devoted, she has created powerful books about teens with which they can identify. Devoted is Rachel's journey from downtrodden, dutiful daughter to a self-confident girl who takes pride in her talents and abilities. It was a beautiful story and an eye opener to the fundamentalist Quiverfull Movement. (view spoiler) ...more
Alex
As someone who was once a part of a religious cult, not quite as extreme as the Quiverfull movement, but still damaging and oppressive, this book was both wonderful and difficult to read. It brought back so many feelings from my childhood. It brought back feeling helpless and having no control over my life, but also having to grapple with the knowledge that my family honestly thought they were doing what was right for us, even as they inflicted a lot of emotional abuse.

From a librarian point of
...more
Jenna (Bookiemoji)
What a brilliant, brilliant book on such a daring and tricky subject. As someone who is not at all religious, I enjoyed it immensely. I do hope that no one out there lets the subject matter scare them away. They would be missing out on a gem of a story.

Full review to come.
Kara
Jun 13, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow. I had no idea the end of this book would have the emotional impact on me that I did. Haven't cried like that over a book in a while.
Asheley
Jun 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was hooked by Devoted's very first sentence: James Fulton is sweating like a sinner in church. Okay, down here in the South, in the place where I live, that is a real saying, and I know what it means. (Jennifer talks about beginning the book with this sentence in an interview about Devoted here.) The book opens with main character Rachel witnessing one of her peers standing in front of her church, confessing a sin, and basically asking the forgiveness of the congregation as well as their help ...more
Veronika
Originally posted at The Regal Critiques

"Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?"

I've had my fair share of disappointments involving books with religious main characters, so to say that I was scared to pick up Devoted would be an understatement. As an atheist, I usually find it hard to form a connection with religious characters, but NOT in Devoted. This book outlived all my expectations and it had EVERYTHING I want in a Contemporary novel. Like...

A STORY THAT WA
...more
Brittany (The Book Addict's Guide/Novelly Yours)
A special thanks to Mary Van Akin from Macmillan for giving me a little push to read this book!
Initial Impressions 5/1/15: Wow, this book was so interesting! With the religious topic and themes, I just wasn't sure I was going to enjoy this one (usually that's something I actively avoid) but since the main character Rachel is the one in her family who is starting to "stray" from the rules of religion (or at least her religious community's beliefs), it was very easy to connect with Rachel and it
...more
Amy
May 27, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended for: Grades 7 and up

Pairs well with: Escaping aggressive cult memoirs like Cartwheels in a Sari: A Memoir of Growing Up Cult and Beyond Belief: My Secret Life Inside Scientology and My Harrowing Escape. In the acknowledgements the author mentioned that the church in the story is based in part on groups profiled in Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement.

My booktalk:

How many of your parents really know about what you do online ... what websites you visit and who you talk
...more
Dew Yothanant
Jun 09, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After my fascinating reading experience with Jennifer Mathieu's debut "The Truth About Alice", I'm looking forward to read this book. I want to see what the book will offer.

"Devoted" is about the story of Rachel Walker, a sixteen-years-old (if I remember correctly) Catholic girl who has been raised in big Catholic family. She's homeschooled. Her life are pretty much restricted. She is expected to continue on to the same path as her mother and the rest of her siblings: become a wife, a mother wit
...more
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I'm an English teacher, writer, wife, and mom who writes books for and about young adults. My novels include THE TRUTH ABOUT ALICE, DEVOTED, and AFTERWARD.

My fourth novel, MOXIE, will be out in September 2017. It was recently optioned by Amy Poehler's production company for film! It has a special Tumblr I adore that you can check out at www.moxiegirlsfightback.com!

All my novels are published by R
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