Book - 2007
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Carolyn Jessop was born into a religious cult known as the Fundamentalist Church of the Latter Day Saints, a 10,000-strong community living in Arizona, USA. Aged 18 she was coerced into marriage with a 50-year-old man she barely knew. She became his fourth wife, and had eight children in 15 years.

This is the true story of Carolyn Jessop's life in this violent and abusive cult. Half-starved, constantly pregnant, women were denied access to proper healthcare or contraception, and sometimes beaten so badly that they could not hear or see for days. Children were brainwashed, taught that everyone outside the community was evil, that dinosaurs never existed and men never set foot on the moon. Books were banned. The local police were cult members and would prevent women from escaping; children were beaten by other cult members to keep their parents in line.

But Carolyn Jessop escaped and just a year later her testimony was central to getting the assets of the cult frozen, and its notorious leader, Warren Jeffs, put on trial. This is her astonishing story.

Publisher: Camberwell, Vic. : Viking, 2007.
ISBN: 9780670917211
Branch Call Number: 922.893 JES
Characteristics: ix, 413 p., [8] p. of plates : ill., ports. ; 24 cm.
Additional Contributors: Palmer, Laura


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Oct 26, 2017

Compelling read. Carolyn knew well before she left that things weren't quite right with how much control the men had, especially when psychopath Jeffs became the "prophet. I am amazed at the pettyness, jealously and backstapping of the FLDS. Unbelievable!
I'm wondering how many Canadians know that there is an FLDS cult in Bountiful, British Columbia, where exactly the same nonsense goes on? This cult sucks all the money it can from the government through welfare, taxes and lying.

Jan 06, 2015

This book is about a woman with a strong character, and the dangers of not being able to think independently for one self with one's own mental faculties. All the cruel things that happened in the book is caused by blind faith and believing in human beings blindly.

Jul 22, 2014

Shocking story! It was really difficult reading about the many forms of abuse Carolyn and her children experienced plus the neglect and brainwashing. Carolyn is one strong woman! Carolyn's story is sad but she persevered. You must read this!

Jun 05, 2013

Unbelievable how this group of people lived & were led by such an extremist individual. It's unbelievable that anyone would ever make it out of this type of religious cult alive! Even though there were a few disgusting details about what some of these people endured, it was a hard book to put down. Kudos to Carolyn Jessop for getting out of this extreme lifestyle & making a new life for her children & herself!

JCLColleenO Apr 18, 2013

This book is an amazing testament to a very strong woman who ultimately chose freedom over fear. She was the first to gain victory over the FLDS by getting her children out of a horrendous life, and gaining full custody of them. She gave so many others courage to fight for what's right for themselves, and gave many young women a voice. If you want to know more about her life after the cult, read her next book, Triumph.

Jan 06, 2013

It was an interesting read and look into life inside a cult. Honestly I blew through this book pretty fast because it was a fast read and pretty interesting. Especially on her insights on what made her change her views on the FLDS church, Warren Jeffs, and the relationship she had with her sister wives.

However there were a few things about this book that make me want to give it 3 1/2 stars. First it felt like many things she wrote about were filler. There were a lot of repetition of things that she would say in a previous paragraph, page, or chapter that made it sound like she was trying to stretch the story out. This book could have been about 100 pages shorter, more to the point, and said everything that she wanted it to say.

One of the other things that bothered me was that there was a lot of jumping around or things that just seemed out of place. She would have a story going and than the next paragraph would be totally random and make me wonder if I skipped a page or missed something. This made me sometimes wonder if it was bad story telling, inaccurate info, or poor editing.

Overall it was a good book with great insight that I would recommend to anyone looking into reading the story of living with in a cult.

Oct 28, 2012

Amazing! Such an easy read! What a life, she writes so well it was playing in my mind like a movie and still is.

Aug 06, 2012

I am so impressed with this woman. I simply could NOT put the book down. Very informational about a topic unknown to most. Americans need to know about this cult lurking in our own backyard.

Jul 30, 2012

This book reads like a fiction. It's amazing what a mother is capable of when it comes to fighting for her children. As I read about Carolyn's escape from her Mormon family and community with her 8 children, my heart filled with sadness and joy. I just could not put the book down.

Jul 21, 2012

Fascinating account of growing up in a polygamous culture and of the challenges of leaving and starting all over again.

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