Stolen Innocence by Elissa Wall with Lisa Pulitzer
I remember a few ago after the FLDS raid in Texas seeing this book in the store and being intrigued. I didn't buy it then, but recently saw it on sale and figured now was the time to read it. I used to love watching Big Love, and there is something interesting a polygamous lifestyle. Its like a car crash you can't quite look away from.
The book is Elissa Wall's story and as the subtitle of the book goes "My Story of Growing Up in a Polygamous Sect, Becoming a Teenage Bride, and Breaking Free from Warren Jeffs." She was born into an FLDS family, and grew up with over 20 siblings and 3 mothers. It's interesting to read about all the good times in her childhood, something you wouldn't necessarily expect out of a book like this. But while there were a lot of happy times in her early childhood, they become far less so as she got older.
As reference above, Elissa was forced to marry when she was only 14 to her first cousin. This seems so surreal, that you would thing this had to have happened quite a while ago. But no, Elissa is actually two years younger than me since she was born in 1986. Its almost unbelievable to think how much she's gone through, when I can't even imagine being in a similar situation. Reading the book she seems so much older than me based on everything that's happened to her, but in reality she isn't.
As uncomfortable as parts of the book made me feel, I did really enjoy it and honestly couldn't put it down. If you've ever been curious as to just how a polygamous marriage worked, or even how people can become so brainwashed and willing to stay in such a situation that is seemingly awful for them, then you would probably enjoy this book. I don't think I could read these types of books all the time, but everyone once in a while its definitely an interesting experience.
2 days ago