The Chosen One

Carol Lynch Williams, Author . St. Martin's Griffin $16.95 (213p) ISBN 978-0-312-55511-5

Williams strikes just the right balance between informative and cautionary in this gripping tale about a 13-year-old girl trapped in a polygamist cult. At first, Kyra's struggles center around her situation—a lack of privacy, too many mothers and the urge to experiment with various sins (reading books besides scripture, exploring outside the compound, kissing a boy). But when she's “chosen” to be the seventh wife of her brutish, 60-something uncle, Kyra's desperation to be somewhere (or someone) else escalates (“God has given you to me, Kyra Leigh,” her uncle tells her. “You will do what He says. What the Prophet says. What I say”). Is she brave enough to run away from the community that has sheltered her since birth? Although the ending verges on the sensational, Williams (Pretty Like Us ) takes such care in crafting Kyra's internal struggles—and her hellacious story—that the ensuing drama rings true. Williams's highlighting all aspects of cult membership (fear of leaving, desire to belong, guilt about sinning), rather than relying on one-sided generalizations (cults are bad), makes this a prudent and powerful read. Ages 12–up. (May)

Reviewed on: 05/25/2009
Release date: 05/01/2009
Compact Disc - 5 pages - 978-1-4272-0706-7
Paperback - 234 pages - 978-0-312-62775-1
Open Ebook - 224 pages - 978-1-4299-8454-6
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-4272-0707-4
Ebook - 224 pages - 978-1-84738-939-8
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-4272-2805-5
Prebound-Sewn - 234 pages - 978-1-60686-699-3
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