If you’re interested in how charisma and isolation can exert irresistible forces on vulnerable minds (or maybe on any minds at all…), you should read this book. I’d heard about Westover’s book for months. I knew it was about a girl who “escaped” a cultish upbringing and found her way to an elite education. That doesn’t begin to depict this extraordinary story. Most haunting to me is the fact that the protagonist is the age of my children. That this degree of inculcation and acceptance of irrational lifestyles and abusive treatment continues under our noses today is deeply disturbing, and maybe illuminating.
Westover is highly intelligent and a clear, vivid, honest writer. Her story is certainly not over, and I hope she continues to shine a light in the darkness, for herself and others.
My 60th year in 60,000 words
Day 184: 134 words, TOTAL = 30,201; 29,799 remaining
Robin Clifford Wood is a writer and writing teacher. She lives in central Maine with her husband and dogs, loves to be outdoors, and enjoys ever-expanding horizons through her grown children and their multi-species families.