Book Tour and Giveaway: Hidden Wives

by Claire Avery

A Tom Doherty Associates Book, 2010

My Rating: A

My Synopsis: Two sisters, Rachel and Sara, share the same father. Rachel’s mother is the first wife and Sara’s mother is his second wife. There are two more wives and numerous children. There is no divorce. They all live in the same house. This is a polygamist’s family.

Rachel and Sara’s family are a part of a secret polygamist community in Utah. Rachel and Sara are both fifteen-years-old and are actually considered spinsters since they should have been married at thirteen.

Their father takes the girls to a meeting with the prophet who will decide who it is they will marry. The prophet decides that Sara will become the fifth wife of her fifty-year-old uncle. The prophet tells them he has sixteen proposals of marriage for the beautiful Rachel so he will have to pray further about it.

The book revolves around the events in Rachel and Sara’s lives. As soon as the girls are home from the meeting, their father severely beats Rachel. She must be a slut to tempt so many men into proposing marriage.

From this point on in the story the girls begin to question the faith and way of life they’ve been taught is the only right way. Sara is the first to closely examine everything she knows. Rachel continues to cling to the faith she has blindly followed in spite of everything that happens to her.

Everything changes, however, when Rachel’s future husband is announced.  Violence erupts and the girls decide they must escape or be trapped in that community forever.

My Evaluation: This is one of those books people may not want to read because of the subject matter, but they should read it. That’s what I told myself.

I became very angry on behalf of the young girls and  the women in the story. Forced marriages of children, bigamy, rape, violence, mental and psychological abuse – it’s all a part of the lives of the females in this story. Unfortunately, this is not a made up story but one based on real life. The good thing is that the book is very well written. It is a heart-wrencher but I’m glad I read it.

About the author:  Claire Avery is a pseudonym for the writing team of two sisters. Mari Hilburn, an attorney, and Michelle Poche, a screenwriter. The two were raised in a cult-like environment that is a story all it’s own. Their childhood was unusual but nothing like the forced marriages in the polygamist group in the book. For an account of their lives and more information about them, visit their website here.

I’m honored to be a part of the blog tour for Hidden Wives. If you’d like to see the other stops on the tour, visit TLC Book Tours. To purchase a copy, visit Hidden Wives on Amazon. (I’m an Amazon Associate.)

GIVEAWAY: I liked this book so much I’d like to give away my copy of the book plus one from the authors. Please leave a comment indicating your interest. I’ll hold this open for a week. (US and Canada only.)

That’s two copies of the book. Giveaway closes August 5.

I thought you might like to see a trailer for the book. It’s a short discussion by the two authors.

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18 Responses to Book Tour and Giveaway: Hidden Wives

  1. Molly says:

    I have read so many favorable reviews of this book across the blogisphere. I would DEFINITELY like to read it – perhaps pairing it with the 19th Wife in a mini-readathon.

    Thanks so much for the give away opportunity!

    Mstermind1 at gmail dot com

  2. I’m fascinated with polygamist sects, so I really want to read this book! Please enter me.

  3. Barbara says:

    I’ve always wondered how the women in these polygamist sects feel about their lives. Please enter me.

  4. I always like to get mad over books, so I’m in! :–)

    nbmars AT yahoo DOT com

  5. Cerrin says:

    Oh I dont like to get mad at the books I read. I know the bad stuff goes on…and it does sound interesting…but I dont think I could commit myself to a book on the mistreatment of anyone. So Nope not for me. You can tell me all about it though heh

  6. Lisamm says:

    The comments are funny.. “I always like to get mad over books”.. followed by, “Oh I don’t like to get mad at the books I read” LOL

    I personally enjoy when a book gets me worked up like that.

    Thanks so much for being on the tour. The book sounds really powerful!

  7. Hi Margot — Got up early this morning intending to send some e-mail, instead took a quick look at my Google reader — you first. Spent the rest of the hour I had reading your post, going to the link, reading that and checking reviews of the other books on this subject that the ladies mention on their site. It was a great hour actually — the e-mail can always wait!

    Since we’re traveling and it would be hard to have a book mailed, I probably shouldn’t enter your contest, but I plan to read it somehow sometime. I actually think I’ve read most of the non-fiction books on this subject that the authors listed, plus loved the series “big love’.. don’t know quite why I’m so fascinated. It makes me mad too, but it is very interesting. (We stayed nearby and drove through Hilldale/Colorado City and looked around one time — saw all the little kids….talked to some people… also visited the place in Texas just shortly after that all happened — so that’s part of the interest.)

  8. Carol Wong says:

    I like to read this kind of book too. I want to protect the girls. Their childhood has been torn away from them. I like books that reveal what it going on and hopefully this will lead to a solution to help the girls.


  9. Sheila says:

    I would love to read this book—please enter me to win!

    skkorman AT bellsouth DOT net

  10. Donna says:

    Sounds intriguing; please include me in your giveaway.


  11. Elisabeth says:

    Sounds like a must read to me!!! Since I love your choices in books, I am sure I won’t be disappointed when I read this.

  12. Sandee61 says:

    I would love to read this book, please add my name to your giveaway. Thank you!
    Enjoying your blog…I am an email sub-scriber.


  13. Beth F says:

    This sounds very interesting and the video is so emotional. I would love to give this a try. Thanks so much for offering it. BFish dot Reads at gmail.

  14. Laura W. says:

    I’d very much like to read this. Thank you for the giveaway!

  15. Staci says:

    I so loved this one too…you captured the essence of the book perfectly in your review!

  16. caite says:

    I must say, I think this subject is fascinating and I would love to read their take on it.
    Please throw my hat in the ring… caitemaireAThotmailDOTcom

  17. edmontonjb says:

    I would love to win this one! This subject is so interesting to me.

  18. Lu says:

    Just stopped by to check out your review of this book. I just recently finished reading it. My thoughts were posted at

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