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I am not even halfway through this book and I am going to give it high marks already for being one of those books that you cannot put down It is exceedingly appealing to the tiniest crumb of voyeur that you have in you, that which might be interested in polygamists, spouse abuse not only husband to wife, but also wife to wife , weird clothing, weird sex, and just freaky shit in general I race from page to page thinking, That cannot have happened and In this day and age and Women, treat I am not even halfway through this book and I am going to give it high marks already for being one of those books that you cannot put down It is exceedingly appealing to the tiniest crumb of voyeur that you have in you, that which might be interested in polygamists, spouse abuse not only husband to wife, but also wife to wife , weird clothing, weird sex, and just freaky shit in general I race from page to page thinking, That cannot have happened and In this day and age and Women, treated like pure property, in the USA, still But the worst was once she had kids As a Mom, I can t stop worrying about what is going to happen to those kids If I keep reading at this pace, I should know in another day or so Jessop also does a great job making it crystal clear how a grown woman could put up with all this She shows with example after example how children are indoctrinated into believing this is all normal, then with chilling detail, shows how impossible it is for a woman to leave FLDS That she had a sense of self, and a sense that this was all terribly wrong, is only a small indication of what a strong woman she is.What will sustain you and make this not a yucky reading experience is that we all know from the title that she does, in fact, escape In other words, there is a happy ending I hope a day later Yesterday my kids watched two dreadful Barbie movies back to back so I could read this book, then I stayed up late to finish it The book remains can t put it down to the very end And indeed, there is a happy ending But there s one small problem I want to readabout this woman and her family OK, Carolyn Jessop, where s the sequel Wow This author did it again I loved her book Triumph so I had to read Escape Both were amazing and super eye opening P.s This is my first 5 star book of 2018 This book goes through Carolyn s life It starts off with her being born into Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints FLDS and ending with her freedom and her success of her children.When she was eighteen years old she had an arranged marriage Merril Jessop, a man 30 years older than her and who already had thre Wow This author did it again I loved her book Triumph so I had to read Escape Both were amazing and super eye opening P.s This is my first 5 star book of 2018 This book goes through Carolyn s life It starts off with her being born into Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints FLDS and ending with her freedom and her success of her children.When she was eighteen years old she had an arranged marriage Merril Jessop, a man 30 years older than her and who already had three wives Carolyn stayed married to him for over fifteen years and eight children She was verbal abused and her life was completely controlled This book was so heart breaking However, it had a great ending of success @READ DOWNLOAD Ò Escape ¾ The dramatic first person account of life inside an ultra fundamentalist American religious sect, and one woman s courageous flight to freedom with her eight childrenWhen she was eighteen years old, Carolyn Jessop was coerced into an arranged marriage with a total stranger a man thirty two years her senior Merril Jessop already had three wives But arranged plural marriages were an integral part of Carolyn s heritage She was born into and raised in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints FLDS , the radical offshoot of the Mormon Church that had settled in small communities along the Arizona Utah border Over the next fifteen years, Carolyn had eight children and withstood her husband s psychological abuse and the watchful eyes of his other wives who were locked in a constant battle for supremacyCarolyn s every move was dictated by her husband s whims He decided where she lived and how her children would be treated He controlled the money she earned as a school teacher He chose when they had sex Carolyn could only refuse at her peril For in the FLDS, a wife s compliance with her husband determined how much status both she and her children held in the family Carolyn was miserable for years and wanted out, but she knew that if she tried to leave and got caught, her children would be taken away from her No woman in the country had ever escaped from the FLDS and managed to get her children out, too But in , Carolyn chose freedom over fear and fled her home with her eight children She hadto her nameEscape exposes a world tantamount to a prison camp, created by religious fanatics who, in the name of God, deprive their followers the right to make choices, force women to be totally subservient to men, and brainwash children in church run schools Against this background, Carolyn Jessop s flight takes on an extraordinary, inspiring power Not only did she manage a daring escape from a brutal environment, she became the first woman ever granted full custody of her children in a contested suit involving the FLDS And in , her reports to the Utah attorney general on church abuses formed a crucial part of the case that led to the arrest of their notorious leader, Warren Jeffs Have you ever read a book that completely encompassed your entire life That is precisely how I felt about Escape Even when I was not reading it it would constantly be in the back of my mind As I took my kid s to the park and then to Target for a special treat I would think, How horrible that Carolyn did not even have the freedom to do something as small and inconsequential as this When I was doing my laundry I would realize how easy it was for me and what a terrible ordeal it was for Car Have you ever read a book that completely encompassed your entire life That is precisely how I felt about Escape Even when I was not reading it it would constantly be in the back of my mind As I took my kid s to the park and then to Target for a special treat I would think, How horrible that Carolyn did not even have the freedom to do something as small and inconsequential as this When I was doing my laundry I would realize how easy it was for me and what a terrible ordeal it was for Carolyn and no, that s not because she had 8 kids O This was a morbidly fascinating book I devoured it and plan on passing it on to my mother and sister to read.I am LDS and confidently can say how very few similarities there are between the FLDS and LDS churches Glory be As an LDS woman I have the freedom to be who I am and pursue my different interests I can get as much education as I desire I have a car that is not only registered but is insured with up to date license plates The FLDS cult made a prison for women and children The LDS church actively preaches how important and indispensable women are.A definite must read for all I head read Under The Banner of Heaven by Jon Krakauer, had read about the raids in Texas, and heard about the arrest of Warren Jeffs, but nothing opened my eyes to what the FLDS was up to, until I read this book It is scary to see how religion can become perversed by power hungry people In fact, I was shocked to see that many of the tactics used to keep people loyal to the church are being used by our government to do the same with the American people The kind of fear and mistrust of others I head read Under The Banner of Heaven by Jon Krakauer, had read about the raids in Texas, and heard about the arrest of Warren Jeffs, but nothing opened my eyes to what the FLDS was up to, until I read this book It is scary to see how religion can become perversed by power hungry people In fact, I was shocked to see that many of the tactics used to keep people loyal to the church are being used by our government to do the same with the American people The kind of fear and mistrust of others that keeps people from questioning authority Additionally, if frieghtens me how little the government pays attention to the plight of these poor women and the Lost Boys of the church So scary that this could be happening under our own noses A Jim Jones kind of warping of something that was meant to be pure.Carolyn Jessop tells the story of her life growing up in the FLDS in a family that had been involved and deeply faithful for many generations She tells of the pain polygamy caused for her mother and the abuse she and her sisters endured as a result She tells of being married off to a 50 year old man at the age of 18 and the rape and mental abuse she endured by him and his family, as well as feeliing helpless to protect the 8 children she would go on to be forced to have with him 3 pregnancies of which almost killed her, one child of which struggled with cancer of the spine At one point, Jessop s husband puts her in direct harm of death and brags about it to anyone who will listen So disgusting Over 17 years of marriage, Jessop beings to see things clearly and question her once blind devotion to the authority of her faith The final straw comes, when Warren Jeffs, now serving a prison sentence for actions having to do with accusations of incestual rape and the marrying off of underage girls, becomes the prophet of the church and begins to pull children out of school, burn books, and preach the need for blood atonement the cutting of throats He pulls apart families, and begins marrying off younger and younger girls to older and older men, banishing under age men from the faith Carolyn finally fears for her children enough to escape and become the first woman in history to win full custody of her children, against a powerful man of the FLDS faith Truelly an amazing women.You must read this story Carolyn was born into the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints FLDS She never knew any other way of life But, fortunately, she was allowed to attend college, and rubbed shoulders just a tiny bit with outsiders Also, as she was studying for a teaching degree, her education exposed her to concepts about child care, etc that she had never encountered After living a life where every move she made had to be approved by her husband for 17 years, and after beari Carolyn was born into the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints FLDS She never knew any other way of life But, fortunately, she was allowed to attend college, and rubbed shoulders just a tiny bit with outsiders Also, as she was studying for a teaching degree, her education exposed her to concepts about child care, etc that she had never encountered After living a life where every move she made had to be approved by her husband for 17 years, and after bearing this and I use this word loosely here man eight children, she escaped her prison.I, too, was born into a fundamentalist religion, and Carolyn has my utmost respect for escaping, and for writing all of it down for the world to read People need to realise that some so called religions , and some so called men of God , are dangerous or, at the very least, emotionally crippling The damage done to a person mentally, emotionally in these situations takes YEARS to crawl out from under And, in some ways, you re never really out.If you want to know what the FLDS really does behind its closed locked doors, read this And, the next time you see a strangely dressed woman in the grocery store, try to quietly, kindly chat to her You may be the only outsider who ever has.5 Stars It made a significant impact I won t forget it I don t know why I spend so much time reading and searching for the next utopian society gone horribly wrong fiction, when there is a real such society existing right in my former backyard Hi Arizona Actually, I do know why When I stop and consider that not only is this shit real, but occurring in my own country not to mention, to women around the world , it depresses the hell out of me The polygamy isn t really the scariest part in theory, I actually don t have a problem with polygam I don t know why I spend so much time reading and searching for the next utopian society gone horribly wrong fiction, when there is a real such society existing right in my former backyard Hi Arizona Actually, I do know why When I stop and consider that not only is this shit real, but occurring in my own country not to mention, to women around the world , it depresses the hell out of me The polygamy isn t really the scariest part in theory, I actually don t have a problem with polygamy If a few orpeople want to get together and make it work, I say, hey, why not Not to mention, Sex at Dawn The Prehistoric Origins of Modern Sexuality, which I recently read, presents an interesting view on the likely multiple man woman origins of human relationships No, the scariest part is the complete and systematic control and degradation of women and children that occurs in this society In this world, women and children are the property of their priesthood head and must follow his every demand and whim This becomes incredibly dangerous when the men in charge are power hungry, abusive hypocrites In 2003, Carolyn Jessup risked everything to escape the FLDS compound in Colorado City with all of her eight children in tow She had spent seventeen years married to a manthan thirty years her senior and lived under constant controlling scrutiny from her husband and his family When Rulon Jeffs and his son Warren began to lead and control the sect, her world became evenradical and extremist Warren Jeffs, an unstable, racist man and alleged child rapist , began making irrational decrees to the community All books, movies and formal schooling were banned He prohibited the color red and large prints like plaids He claimed that anyone needing medical attention to heal was a person of little faith As he gainedandpower, he began committing unbelievably cruel acts He subjected the children to intense survival classes during which they would be made to witness the large scale slaughter of animals He once rounded up and killed every dog in the community He began arranging marriages between young teenage girls and men sometimes sixty oryears older If a man in the community displeased him, he would strip him of his wives and children and excommunicate him Hundreds of teenage boys were kicked out of the community to get rid of any competition for wives But,than just an objective recounting of the atrocities committed by Warren Jeffs and his cronies, this is one woman s very personal and subjective story of her experiences in the FLDS, and her incredible determination to get out The majority of this book is Carolyn s very intimate, detailed retelling of her day to day life in a home that she shared with five sister wives and dozens of children I found these details to be both horrifying and fascinating With every other control stripped from these women, they took the only control that they had left and used it to break each other down It sickens me that these wives have essentially been tricked into competing with each other for the attentions of a man that repulses them Carolyn s own poisoning by this twisted system comes through She complains that her sister wives had little sympathy for the horrible pregnancy symptoms that she suffered morning sickness is seen as a sign of rebellion , but then accuses one of them of faking pregnancy side effects to gain sympathy with almost the same breath She is sometimes very harsh in her judgment of these women, when I was feeling that they all deserve quite a bit of sympathy While this extreme subjectivity of the narrator was sometimes a little hard to take, I also found it fascinating This is a real inside view of the FLDS home dynamic This book has a ghost writer, but Carolyn s voice really comes through.Carolyn s incredible tenacity and strength are also striking This is a very inspirational story, and makes every hardship I ve ever dealt with look paltry in comparison Carolyn has since become the only woman to retain full custody of all of her children after escaping the FLDS Most women who attempt to escape will only take their youngest children, or none of them It would have been much easier for Carolyn to get out by herself, but she chose the much harder road Throughout this book she emerges as a powerfully strong woman and devoted mother Her slow awakening from complete compliance, to questioning of her beliefs, to revolt is very affecting.Perfect Musical PairingNine Inch Nails SunspotsMore than anything, this book makes me want to bust out the angry, fanatical religion bashing music and no one does that for me better than Nine Inch Nails It s really tempting to go for aobvious choice like God Given or Heresy But, I ve always loved this song I think that the lyrics are open to some interpretation is it about shedding everything that you once were and emerging renewed Is it about his complete emasculation by a powerful woman Feel free to discuss For me, this song works on many levels This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here It is as I finish this book and write this review that federal agents are serving search and arrest warrants at the Fundamental Church of the Latter Day Saints FLDS current compound in El Dorado, TX Escape is written by a former FLDS member who recently escaped a polygamous marriage in Colorado City, UT with her 8 children She testified in last year s trial against their prophet Warren Jeffs though this trial is not covered in the book which resulted in his state conviction and a sentenc It is as I finish this book and write this review that federal agents are serving search and arrest warrants at the Fundamental Church of the Latter Day Saints FLDS current compound in El Dorado, TX Escape is written by a former FLDS member who recently escaped a polygamous marriage in Colorado City, UT with her 8 children She testified in last year s trial against their prophet Warren Jeffs though this trial is not covered in the book which resulted in his state conviction and a sentence of 10 years in prison for accomplice to rape for arranging the marriage of a 14 year old girl to her 19 year old first cousin That background gives you a glimpse into the author s previous life.Although this is the best written book, it is hard to put down It describes a world that is hard to believe exists in the U.S As described by the Utah attorney general, I have a corner of my state that is worse than under the Taliban Women are forced into arranged marriages They are encouraged to have as many children as possible This not only gives thempower in their polygamous household, but it also is progress towards their exalted place in the celestial kingdom Complete subservience to their priesthood husband is demanded Violence, both physical and sexual, is common Mothers are basically not permitted to mother their children physical affection is discouraged hugs and kisses, a sign of weakness and coddling, extinct past the nursing years Sons and daughters, future priesthoods and mothers wives, continue to be raised in this environment today.It is amazing that this woman not only escaped, but that she succeeded in being awarded custody of her children It is a complete testament to her personal strength, determination, and individuality She rose above and thought for herself She wantedfor her children and knew thatwas out there Unfortunately, once her eldest daughter who had escaped with her turned 18, she the daughter opted to return to the FLDS community I cannot imagine the author s heartache and sense of loss, now losing her daughter to everything she the author has fought against As of the writing of the book, the author had not heard from her daughter after her return to the FLDS In the trial which I mentioned above, the author was a witness for the prosecution her eldest daughter, a noted witness for the defendant, Warren Jeffs Family against family.This book brought me lots of sadness As a mother to 3 girls, I cannot imagine raising them to their teen years, only to have them sent off to an arranged marriage by some prophet This is a cult, pure and simple The mind control is incredible The use of religion as a form of power and control mirrors all domestic violence relationships The girls are not raised to know they have control of their own destiny education is an after thought women are for procreation only, and even that appears to be to satisfy the sexual deviancy of the much older men.What s scary is this is today Today In the United States I say prayers today that another Waco isn t on the way as agents surround and seal off the current FLDS compound in Texas.N.B The FLDS is completely separate from mainstream Mormonism, which is refered to as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints The Church of Jesus Christ disavowed polygamy in 1890 I sat up til 2 A.M finishing this book It was an intense experience It made me grieve for the inequities in my own culture between men and women along with the fear that holds me down Having lived near Colorado City, reading this book made me look back on my experience living in St George, Utah with new eyes I attended Dixie College in the mid 1980 s There had been a girl in my Spanish class who wore the plig uniform and did her hair in the dippidy doo flip She was ostracized by most o I sat up til 2 A.M finishing this book It was an intense experience It made me grieve for the inequities in my own culture between men and women along with the fear that holds me down Having lived near Colorado City, reading this book made me look back on my experience living in St George, Utah with new eyes I attended Dixie College in the mid 1980 s There had been a girl in my Spanish class who wore the plig uniform and did her hair in the dippidy doo flip She was ostracized by most of the students but I determined to make friends with her At first she was curt and guarded but eventually she opened up enough to have a casual friendship We often walked to or from class together and I learned about her family She had several younger siblings and spoke of them with love When I married over a year later I gave my entire stuffed animal collection to Veronica for her little brother and sisters She was so grateful that her eyes misted over and I somehow knew stuffed animals were a foreign item in her world She and her family made a beautiful hand stitched quilt for my wedding gift I still have it 24 years later They sewed an image of the St George Temple onto a silky pink background Because of the silkiness of the fabric it is one of my children s favorite quilts to cuddle in I have tried my best to keep it out of the reach of dirty little hands over the years It is the only wedding gift in tact and I think of Veronica whenever I see it.I m glad I reached out to lonely Veronica in my College days at Dixie and realized she was likely going through something similar to Carolyn I wondered if Veronica was the third or fourth wife to some old guy or was she sent to college because she was plain and would likely never marry.As an adult I lived in St George for three years between 2003 and 2006 I saw polygamists at Wal Mart every time I went there I was disturbed by my own reaction to them Having lived all over the U.S I was aware of how limited the perspective of people who stayed in one place their whole lives can be Yet I still looked at them as lesser individuals Because I was so disturbed by my own inner hateful response to this people, I decided to learnabout them I met a woman who had written a book and was actively helping girls escape She was selling her books at a booth at the county fair She was putting her life on the line by speaking out and I was impressed I wrote a speech on her service and invited her to attend the toastmasters meeting when I gave the presentation I called her the Harriet Tubman of Colorado City.In my speech I compared the polygamists with the Jews of Europe during the Nazi era Looking at this group of God s children with compassion and understanding changed how I saw them completely It had been many years since my friendship with Veronica and I had to overcome my own feelings of inadequacy as a woman to not judge them for living in such a bizarre culture It was after recognizing their value as individuals that I started up conversations with the women I saw in Wal Mart I was aware they had been told that the rest of us were evil but I knew they were just struggling mothers like the rest of us I began greeting them with a smile and hello I still avoided the men completely, even gave them the evil eye if my teenaged daughters were with me.I came up with ways of starting conversations with the women I asked one mother if she thought the sore on my son s head could be chickenpox At first she balked but we ended up having a regular conversation and she gave me advice on dealing with the childhood illness Often, if I was in an isle and a Colorado City woman was nearby I would comment on products that were sold and probably sounded like a bad commercial as I searched for ways to reach out and connect My goal was to help these women recognize that the rest of us were human too.Whenever I saw the little polygamist boys working on construction sights I would call the phone number advertized on trucks and signs and complain to whoever answered that there are child labor laws and I would report children working to the police if I saw it again I was especially repulsed by the lost boys and grieved over the stories of male prostitution and drug use.This book brought home the reality and horror of being brainwashed and the dangers of living in a completely controlled environment I can t help but wonder how true of a book it is I don t want to believe that there was motivation to make things up as the truth seems dramatic enough Did Carolyn ever abuse her children or the other wives kids It seems likely that she would, coming from such an abusive mother, but she paints herself in a favorable light, as is expected I was amazed at her determination to get educated and her ability to recognize that it was the only way out I was so saddened at the end when her daughter returns to the cult and would love to know the rest of the story.It also made me think of Veronica and wonder where and how she is All right We re going an even three on this one.I finished Escape a few days ago and felt a little confused about my feelings over this book I even mentioned this in a phone conversation with another writer friend.The story is compelling It would be compelling if it were fiction the fact that it s true takes it somewhat beyond compelling and into horrifying territory The FLDS church is perpetrating human rights atrocities on American soil, and the government has, until very recent years, All right We re going an even three on this one.I finished Escape a few days ago and felt a little confused about my feelings over this book I even mentioned this in a phone conversation with another writer friend.The story is compelling It would be compelling if it were fiction the fact that it s true takes it somewhat beyond compelling and into horrifying territory The FLDS church is perpetrating human rights atrocities on American soil, and the government has, until very recent years, turned a blind eye to it because of how much we all like to tip toe around any time a person starts screaming about their right to the free practice of religion In a country where religious rights are often farprecious than human rights, is it any wonder that the FLDS have developed a tradition, a memetic heritage, in fact, of sexual, physical, and psychological abuse, all stitched neatly into the doctrines of their twisted faith Add to that a healthy dose of interstate and international trafficking in children and adults for the purpose of sexual slavery and you ve got a story shocking enough to keep anybody engaged to the very end.The weakness of Escape is in its terrible writing Truly, it is terrible it is, I think, the worst I ve ever seen in a traditionally published book, just in terms of repeated failure of craft I tried to be kind and lenient in this regard, at first Carolyn Jessop was born into a culture that actively hates and fears education There is no reason to expect her to be an excellent writer, and why should somebody who s already escaped and survived the misery she endured and brought eight children out with her have to shoulder the extra life burden of learning how to write well Jessop doesn t need to be a good writer But her GHOST WRITER, so prominently involved with the production of this book that her NAME IS ON THE COVER, really ought to do better I found myself growing increasinglyfrustrated with needless repetitions telling the reader once that sex is the only form of power or currency available to FLDS women was sufficient Two or three times would have been understandable I saw this same sentiment expressed, often in the same exact words, at least once per chapter, or so it seemed, and sometimesthan once The writing was lackluster beyond mere dullness if not for the sensationalism of the story I would not have read past the first chapter simply due to the frustration of slogging through the poorly written words Dull, dull, dull And sloppy There is just no reason to repeat the same sentence, verbatim, at both the beginning and the end of a paragraph Laura Palmer, this is your fault I lay the blame squarely on you What did you do to earn your paycheck on this gig Just put your name on the cover Oh, how I would love to read the same story with writing that s even slightly stronger Even a tiny bitprofessional,conscious,engaging It would have been an auto five star, no question I think it s a very important story People need to know about the crimes perpetrated by the FLDS It should be read But gird up your loins