I was given an advance copy of both of Rachael Denhollander’s books to read in exchange for my honest opinion about the books. These reviews are in my words.
The power of one voice.
Rachael Denhollander is an attorney, advocate, and educator who became known internationally as the first woman to file a police report and speak publicly against USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar, one of the most prolific sexual abusers in recorded history. In her book, Rachael gives you a look inside her heart, soul, mind, and strength and you will appreciate the sacrifices she made to protect others with no strings attached. I consider this book the most important book for our generation’s most pressing issue surrounding the safety of our children. We must be alert to the dangers around us, trust our gut instinct regarding potential abusers, and report ALL allegations to law enforcement; allowing them to sort out the truth. We must protect our children.
The thought process and preparation that went into Rachael’s plan of attack to bring Nassar down was brilliant. Unheard of! He messed with the wrong girl…yet the right girl because she would grow into a woman bent on ending her abuser’s reign of terror. Rachael did what was needed to stop him and protect other young girls. She was born for such a time as this; to carry on as Christ would to restore the worth, dignity, calling, and voice of girls and women.
I’m so grateful she is sharing her story and changing our culture through her engaging and brave storytelling. She pulls the reader into the moment.
Our culture must change.
Women and children are not objects for satisfying someone’s deep, dark need for power and control. Abusers are preying for more victims. “Bullies and predators prey on the defenseless. They count on victims being unable to protect themselves. More important, they count on everyone else being too afraid to confront them. I hate injustice, but I hate silence and apathy in the face of injustice even more. Far too often, bullies’ belief that no one will challenge them is both well-founded and devastating for the people they target. But it doesn’t have to be this way.”
Men, women and young men and young women need to read this book. They need to develop an aversion to abuse, porn, human trafficking, and the objectification of women.
I’ve been interested in Rachael as an abuse advocate since I first heard her give her victim impact statement at Larry Nassar’s trial. Of course, I had heard of her name months before but her statement was the first time I heard her speak. I thought: She gets it. She’s lived it. She is a mighty woman full of courage, mercy, and wisdom. If anyone can further the cause of bringing sexual abuse to light and change our culture’s response to victims…she’s the one who can do it!
I listened to Rachael speak at the Southern Baptist Convention Sexual Abuse Panel in Birmingham, Alabama, in June 2019. She is brilliant, articulate, scripturally grounded, in love with Jesus, and sacrificially pouring herself out as a drink offering to the Lord in how she ministers to abuse victims.
I was thrilled to be part of her book launch team. I was mailed advanced copies of her new books which are released to the public today. I honestly cannot recommend this book enough!
Who is this book for?
If you are an abuse survivor, you will feel validated, seen, understood, and ministered to as an individual.
If you are married to an abuse survivor, you will see a beautiful picture of how to love your traumatized spouse and care for them while they learn to manage the pain of what happened to them. Jacob, Rachael’s husband, is an amazing example of loving your wife the way Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.
If you want to understand the struggles, hearts and minds of abuse survivors, what they need, and how you can help, this book is for you.
Are you concerned about the worldwide problem of pornography and the effect it has on abusers? If you struggle with understanding the extent of sexual abuse in our culture and in our churches, this book will stir you to prayer and to action without making you defensive toward those who report allegations.
This book will show you that professional, dynamic, friendly, nice, personable people can be abusers. The person living in your house with you could be an abuser. I know this first hand from past experience, but most people cannot fathom the possibility.
I wholeheartedly recommend both of Rachael’s books. You will understand her heart for justice, for protecting innocent children, and for changing our culture. Most importantly she does all of this through her love for the gospel, for Jesus, and for survivors; not for herself. In What Is a Girl Worth you will see how deep Rachael’s sacrifice has been and continues to be for others.
The only thing I saw as problematic while reading the book is that Rachael, at the time of the trial, had not yet seen a professional therapist to help her manage her sexual assault trauma. Time does not heal and anyone who has been abused needs to talk to a professional. I highly recommend EMDR therapy with a Christian therapist. I know therapy was recommended to Rachael and hopefully she has secured a trusted therapist to help her. I don’t want any other survivors to think they can manage on their own, only to find out later that they cannot. Optimal healing and strength comes from the wisdom and care of a trained professional.
Rachael Denhollander is a world changer. I’m grateful to the parents who raised her and for her husband Jacob who stands by her. Jacob is a rare find in today’s world and is a shining example for other men to emulate.
REVIEW: How Much Is a Little Girl Worth?
Foundational truths simply stated yet profound. How Much Is a Little Girl Worth is beautifully written and illustrated with a whimsical look that little girls will adore. Rachael’s purposeful inclusion of little girls of color is priceless!
I cried reading the book as I thought about everything I went through when I attempted to protect my own little girl from a pastor/pedophile predator. I want to sit her 24-year-old self next to me and read the book to her.
“You are worth fighting for, raising my voice,
Worth every sacrifice, every hard choice.
Worth changing laws, worth all the fight,
Worth whatever it takes to do what is right.”
All our little girls are worth the fight and this book helps convey their worth and dignity.
This is a must read bed time story so little girls can have sweet dreams of love, stability, safety, worth, and a bright future. Little girls need to hear these truths.
This book is going on my Christmas, birthday, and baby shower gift list for all little girls. A book for boys in the works and I look forward to buying it.
Buy a copy of How Much Is A Little Girl Worth for your child’s school, church library, doctor’s office, counselor, domestic violence shelter, homeless shelter, Sunday school classrooms, adoption agency, and MOPS group. Be sure to stop at your local library and ask them to order both of Rachael’s books.
**Disclaimer** I received a free copy of these books in exchange for providing an honest review. My opinions and words are my own.**
Who is Rachael?
Rachael Denhollander is an attorney, advocate, and educator who became known internationally as the first woman to file a police report and speak publicly against USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar, one of the most prolific sexual abusers in recorded history. As a result of her activism, over 250 women came forward as survivors of Nassar’s abuse, leading to his life imprisonment. Additionally, her courageous tenacity and ongoing advocacy helped trigger a complete upheaval at both USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University, where former executives and high-ranking officials face numerous criminal charges for their complicity in covering up Nassar’s abuse and lying about what they knew.
For her work as an advocate and educator on sexual assault, Rachael was named one of TIME Magazine’s “100 Most Influential People in the World” and one of Glamour Magazine’s “Women of the Year” in 2018. Additionally, she received the “Inspiration of the Year” award from Sports Illustrated, was a joint recipient of ESPN’s “Arthur Ashe Courage Award,” and was named a “Michiganian of the Year” by the Detroit News. She is the recipient of numerous other awards and recommendations, including the “CHILD Protector Award” from CHILD USA, the “Integrity and Impact Award” from Dow Jones Sports Intelligence, and HeartAmbassador’s “Lifetime Achievement Award for Contributing to Social Justice.”
Rachael has been recognized and honored in both the Kentucky and Michigan legislatures for her advocacy, and has been active in spearheading legislative reform at the state level. She has lectured and participated in live Q&A’s on the campus of numerous universities across the nation, including Harvard, Stanford, NYU, UC Berkeley, USC, and others. She continues to educate on issues of abuse through supporting and speaking at organizations that advocate for victims of sexual and domestic abuse, teaching at abuse prevention conferences, and helping companies and other institutions create safe environments for addressing abuse and harassment. A committed Christian, Rachael has also been at the forefront of condemning the problem of abuse that often plagues churches and religious organizations while working to address the underlying dynamics. Additionally, she was a panelist with a United Nations Peace Messenger Organization at the UN’s 62nd Commission on the Status of Women.
A member of the California Bar Association, Rachael has educated attorneys on the dynamics of sexual abuse at the American Bar Association’s Sports Law Forum, and was the commencement speaker at the graduation ceremony of Brandeis School of Law in Louisville, KY.
Prior to beginning her work as an advocate and educator, she worked in public policy, performed research and writing for human rights organizations, and spoke in a variety of capacities, including testifying before state judiciary committees. She has also taught in legislative action days, and authored and taught a summer camp course on appellate advocacy and judicial philosophy to talented high school students.
She has appeared on CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX News, BBC, NPR and regularly appears in national and international print media, including the Washington Post, Der Spiegel, Wall Street Journal, and the Associated Press, and is a New York Times and Vox op-ed contributor.
Rachael holds a Juris Doctorate from Oak Brook College of Law and possesses an honorary doctorate from the American University of Paris.
She, along with her husband Jacob, lives in Louisville, Kentucky with their four young children