Monday, 25 October 2010

The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams

Being Chosen isn't always a good thing.
review by Maryom

Kyra and her family are part of a repressive religious polygamist closed community where everyone's personal wishes come second to those of the Prophet and his Apostles. Their restrictions are becoming more severe, books are banned, no more trips into town, and anyone who disagrees is likely to be beaten up or disappear. Kyra has been sneaking round these rules - borrowing books from a mobile library van, meeting with one of the boys in secret but then she finds that she has been Chosen as the latest, 7th, wife of her 60 year old uncle and realises that she is running out of options.
I picked this up one afternoon and was so caught up in it, that I had to finish it that night. I was absolutely engrossed! The story is told in the first person through Kyra who takes this situation - 1 father, 3 mothers and 21 siblings - as normal, even when she feels that she doesn't quite fit in. When the prophet announces that Kyra is The Chosen One, the reader really shares her astonishment and disbelief and the helplessness of both Kyra and her family, caught in this world where no opposition or free thought is allowed and women and girls are treated as chattels to be disposed of by others. The plot was a little predictable for an adult reader with a vague knowledge of American religious cults who watched the TV series Big Love but an excellent read nonetheless.

Maryom's review - 4 stars
Publisher - Simon and Schuster

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