Thursday, January 16, 2014

4. The Witness Wore Red; The 19th Wife Who Brought Polygamous Cult Leaders to Justice - Rebecca Musser & M. Bridget Cook

Audio read by the author
12 cds (the last one are some black & white photos)
14 hours.
2013, Hachette Audio
 352 pgs.
Adult Memoir
Finished 1/14/2014
Goodreads Rating: 4.02 (795 ratings)
My Rating: 2.5/The story was fascinating, didn't enjoy the writing or narration
Setting:  Colorado City, Arizona, then Oregon and Idaho

My comments:  Fascinating story, and Becky Musser was really brave to tell it (and to live it!), but I had some problems with the book. I'm not a nonfiction reader AT ALL, and as much as I want to read memoirs and autobiographies, I never like them.  A couple of problems for me. I have a really lousy memory myself, but I can't imagine that the details remembered in this book, without a journal or diary to refer to, could be remembered truly. Also, I realize that Ms. Musser is not a writer, but she did have help ....  I found the writing repetitive, pretty simplistic, and boring.  The author, herself, read the book, which in a way was really good, but after awhile her awkward pauses between words in weird places really bugged me.  I'm too picky, I guess.  My heart aches for her and all the women that are in their situation, and I'm really glad I got to hear her story.  However, I found a Dateline episode about this whole story which I found much more interesting and concise.

Goodreads Review: Rebecca Musser grew up in fear, concealing her family's polygamous lifestyle from the "dangerous" outside world. Covered head-to-toe in strict, modest clothing, she received a rigorous education at Alta Academy, the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints' school headed by Warren Jeffs. Always seeking to be an obedient Priesthood girl, in her teens she became the nineteenth wife of her people's prophet: 85-year-old Rulon Jeffs, Warren's father. Finally sickened by the abuse she suffered and saw around her, she pulled off a daring escape and sought to build a new life and family.
     The church, however, had a way of pulling her back in-and by 2007, Rebecca had no choice but to take the witness stand against the new prophet of the FLDS in order to protect her little sisters and other young girls from being forced to marry at shockingly young ages. The following year, Rebecca and the rest of the world watched as a team of Texas Rangers raided the Yearning for Zion Ranch, a stronghold of the FLDS. Rebecca's subsequent testimony would reveal the horrific secrets taking place behind closed doors of the temple, sending their leaders to prison for years, and Warren Jeffs for life.
     THE WITNESS WORE RED is a gripping account of one woman's struggle to escape the perverse embrace of religious fanaticism and sexual slavery, and a courageous story of hope and transformation.

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