Carolyn Jessop was raised in a fundamentalist cult community, the FLDS (Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints), which is a radical polygamist offshoot of the Mormon Church that is housed in small communities in Arizona and Utah. Her book takes us deep into the daily life experienced by the members--the power of some, and the helplessness of others. Reading this book made me realize that we have our own form of the Taliban right here in America.
Carolyn was forced into an arranged marriage to a total stranger at the age of 18, then gave birth to 8 children in 15 years. She and her children were abused physically and emotionally. She was rightfully afraid that when her children were out of her sight they were in danger of being beaten by her sister wives.
From the book flap: Escape exposes a world tantamount to a prison camp, created by religious fanatics who, in the name of God, deprive their followers of the right to make choices, force women to be totally subservient to men, and brainwash children in church-run schools. Against this background, Carolyn Jessop's flight takes on an extraordinary, inspiring power. Not only did she manage a daring escape from a brutal environment, she became the first woman ever granted full custody of her children in a contested suit involving the FLDS. And in 2006, her reports to the Utah attorney general on church abuses formed a crucial part of the case that led to the arrest of its notorious leader, Warren Jeffs.
If you have ever watched HBO's Big Love, this book will make you understand the accuracy of the show's portrayal of a modern cult in America.
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