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.