I received this book for free from the library in exchange for my honest opinions/ review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.
Published by Grand Central Publishing on September 10th 2013
Genres: memoir, nonfiction
Source: the library
Buy on Amazon
Rebecca Musser grew up in fear, concealing her family's polygamous lifestyle from the "dangerous" outside world. Covered head-to-toe in strict, modest clothing, she received a rigorous education at Alta Academy, the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints' school headed by Warren Jeffs. Always seeking to be an obedient Priesthood girl, in her teens she became the nineteenth wife of her people's prophet: 85-year-old Rulon Jeffs, Warren's father. Finally sickened by the abuse she suffered and saw around her, she pulled off a daring escape and sought to build a new life and family.
The church, however, had a way of pulling her back in-and by 2007, Rebecca had no choice but to take the witness stand against the new prophet of the FLDS in order to protect her little sisters and other young girls from being forced to marry at shockingly young ages. The following year, Rebecca and the rest of the world watched as a team of Texas Rangers raided the Yearning for Zion Ranch, a stronghold of the FLDS. Rebecca's subsequent testimony would reveal the horrific secrets taking place behind closed doors of the temple, sending their leaders to prison for years, and Warren Jeffs for life.
THE WITNESS WORE RED is a gripping account of one woman's struggle to escape the perverse embrace of religious fanaticism and sexual slavery, and a courageous story of hope and transformation.
I’ve read a bunch of similar books before – and they are horrifying. I always say the same thing in these reviews – even if only HALF the stories are true – then there are no words for what these people have lived through. My mind simply can’t imagine it, based upon my own privilege of being born a WASP.
I was a little disappointed to find out the author left the FLDS when she did – she was this major witness to major court cases and lived through such a traumatic period in our history, yet she left the FLDS before so many events most of us know about actually occurred. I admit there’s at least part of me who wonders if she was speaking out only for the fame. On the other hand, speaking out and the other sacrifices she made in order to be in court on a continuing basis was just so terribly brave.
I also found it very interesting to read about the FLDS from the point of view of a female who was (relatively) well off, cared for, “rich”. She certainly had money to go horse back riding, had decent clothes to wear, could fly frequently on a Lear Jet. Yes, that money was stolen from others in order to support a prophet, but she still lived a pretty good life and from what I could tell, was a heck of a lot (financially) better off than I am. On the other hand, no privacy – I can’t even imagine never having any privacy at all. I work in retail which means there are cameras on me every where I go except the bathroom, and that stresses me out sometimes even though I’m not doing anything wrong – like the author. To be constantly watched….