"My name is Flora Jessop. I've been called apostate, vigilante, and crazy bitch, and maybe I am. But some people call me a hero, and I'd like to think they're right too. If I am a hero, maybe it's because every time I can play a part in saving a child or a woman from a life of servitude and degradation, I'm saving a little piece of me, too.
I was one of twenty-eight children born to my dad and his three wives. Indoctrinated to believe that the outside world was evil, and that I resided among the righteous, I was destined to marry a man chosen for me by the Prophet. I would then live in harmony with my sister-wives, bear many children, and obey and serve my future husband in this life and throughout eternity. But my innocence didn't last long. While still a child, I understood that the church of the righteous was nothing but a church of lies.
When I was eight years old my father sexually molested me for the first time, raping me when I was twelve. I tried to kill myself. Beaten, molested, taunted, and abused by family members alleging they only wanted to save my soul became a daily routine, I ran from this abuse more than once in my early teens--even attempting to cross the desert on foot. My family hunted me down. I thought government agencies would provide me safety if I reported my father. Instead, police and social services colluded with the FLDS to return me to my family and I ended up back inside polygamy, right where I started."
Flora goes on from there to tell the dramatic true story of how she ultimately escaped and has been fighting against frustrating obstacles with hard fought successes in rescuing women and children from the FLDS. It's a story you can't put down.
©2009 Flora Jessop and Paul T. Brown (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
This book details many of the abuses that go on in the FLDS church, and what happens when women and children in particular try and run away. There are portions that describe the setting in Colorado City, Arizona, as a rugged desert land, and the incomplete houses so well that you can feel the hot sun on your face and see the decrepid landscape in your mind's eye.
This book does not flinch from the abuses in the church or Flora Jessop's life outside of it. While there are places for indicating the sexual abuse and drug use, some of these seem to be done for shock value if nothing else. This is a minor quibble in an otherwise good book... think of Flora Jessop as a battle-weary soldier, trusting no one but getting women and children out of the FLDS, and you ahve the right idea.
I loved some of the journal entries and poetry that were sprinkled throughout the second half of the book... it gave heart to some difficult passages to read.
Flora's guilt over not being able to save her mother and sister... I cried.
This book is all about extreme reactions, it's just incomprehensible that some people actually live this way.
Flora tells the story of her life and that of her community with such candid and honesty leaving herself and others naked and exposed, as you are immersed in the story you can not stop yourself from being angry and hurt for these women and children forced into this life.
This brutally honest book opens a window to a different world, one that exists just outside our windows. It is and important read, as well as an engrossing one, It is however very graphic and may not be suitable for some people (should definitely be considered as a "Triger".
Never, this book brought me close to vomiting, the horrific truth of this woman's life almost brought me to a murderous rage, justice will be served.
The strength of the main character was astounding, she is one of those people in life God uses to spread messages that turn tables and shed light in darkest of corners.
Yes, it made me want to avenge these children just sick sad heart wrenching.
The truth is uglier than sometimes we can fathom.
I haven't read the print version.
Flora's descriptions were VERY vivid, even when they could have been toned down a bit. Her anger at the church is palpable and she gives a great overview of life within FLDS.
Her voice was grating at times, especially when she was trying to do characters
Her love for her mother is poignant and often more moving than her more graphic descriptions of abuse
This book should come with a trigger warning for graphic (and I mean play-by-play detailed) descriptions of child molestation and rape. This is Flora's story and the way in which she has chosen to tell it, but it may be extremely difficult for some people to listen to.
This story is extremely graphic and is hard to listen to if you're squeamish.
The hardest thing to take though, is that I'm skeptical that a lot of the stories are true. The author has clearly been damaged and traumatized by her experiences...but there are a lot of sections that are very difficult to believe and at very least are biased.
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