Tuesday, June 30, 2009

REVIEW: "The Chosen One"

I know, I've been MIA for this month-- and only two reviews! That's terrible. I'm really going to work harder on it next month, I promise. I've just had so many things going on here, my summer college classes (and now finals), family issues, etc.... But next month I'm going to really work on posting daily-- or at least a few times a week. So please, stick with me! ;)

On to the review:

Author: Carol Lynch Williams
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Pages: 224
Summary (B&N):
Thirteen-year-old Kyra has grown up in an isolated polygamous community without questioning her father’s three wives and her twenty brothers and sisters. Or at least without questioning them much—if you don’t count her secret visits to the Mobile Library on Wheels to read forbidden books, or her meetings with the boy she hopes to choose for herself instead of having a man chosen for her. But when the Prophet decrees that Kyra must marry her 60-year-old uncle—who already has six wives—Kyra must make a desperate choice in the face of violence and her own fears of losing her family.

My Thoughts:

When I first picked up The Chosen One, I was a bit weary-- it's not the kind of book I usually read. I didn't know a whole lo about polygamy, except for the stereotypical information we get through the news. Could I get into this book even though everything about their life style goes against my beliefs and my morals? I didn't think so... but I would soon be proven wrong.

Though I still find polygamy wrong (and not just because of the multiple wives), I found out more about it through this book, and hopefully that knowledge will help me to be more open minded in the future-- after all, many of the followers are born into this cult/religion, but that doesn't mean they agree to everything their 'God' has said they should do.
Kyra's family, for example, seems much closer, more loving, than the others, and they don't take everything they've been raised to believe to heart. They don't want Kyra to marry her 60 year old uncle (and become his 7th wife), and they wish they could change they would do anything to change the Prophet's decision.

Also, looking at Kyra and Joshua's forbidden love, you can't help but reach out and connect with the characters, even if they do have different beliefs. They love each other and want to get married, grow old, all the same things we want from life-- but their family, their whole community, is against them. Sound familiar? We've heard the same basic idea before, but never in this type of setting. That's one of the reason I love this book-- she connected it to things we could relate to, and in doing so make the characters seem real.
4.5 STARS! An in depth look at a culture we know very little about-- enlightening, interesting, yet gut-wrenching because of the clear pictures Williams paints in your mind. Emotional, compelling, and eye opening, Kyra's story is sure to make you stop and think, not just close the book and put it aside. Fast-paced and exciting, The Chosen One is sure to grab your attention from the very beginning!


Until Next Time,
The Book Queen

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