Thursday, May 14, 2009

Review: The Chosen One and Giveaway

The Chosen One

"If I was going to kill the Prophet, " I say, not even keeping my voice low, "I'd do it in Africa."

Author: Carol Lynch Williams
Published: 2009 St. Martin's Griffin
Genre: YA
Pages: 213 heart-stopping, gripping, I couldn't put it down pages!!!!

Synopsis: Thirteen-year-old Kyra has grown up in an isolated community without questioning the fact that her father has three wives and she has 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 sixty-year-old uncle- who laready has six wives-Kyra must make a desperate choice in the face of violence and her own fears of losing her family.

My thoughts:
This book is a very compelling and haunting story of a young girl's struggle to make her own choices regarding who she will love and give her heart to. Kyra is a character that you will embrace from the very first moment you meet her. A year or so ago, there was a lot of public scrutiny in regards to a polygamist community that forced young girls to wed older members. Well, this book takes you right inside and gives you an upclose and very personal look at what some of these groups force their young girls to participate in. I was truly appalled at the thought of a 13-year-old girl being "given" to a 60-year-old man, just because the Prophet had a dream about their so-called blessed union. Kyra loves her family and only wants to please her father and mother, but deep down inside she truly knows that their way of life isn't normal. She loved to read and before the new Prophet took over everyone was allowed to have books. But that changed and the one thing that she took refuge in was stripped away from her. She has an intense crush on a teen boy, Joshua, a fellow Chosen One. They share a sweet and special love with each other. A first love that should be treasured but instead it is one they have to hide, because she's been spoken for and even though she's not married, it would be considered adultery. This book disturbed me on so many levels....books being forbidden to read by anyone except the Prophets and Elders.......pedophiles (I truly believe they are) preying on young prepubscent girls.......violence against women and children.....threatening death if the Prophet isn't obeyed.....being controlled and watched......if I was Kyra I would've ran to!! Not everyone in this story is a bad person. Kyra's parents were raised in this atmosphere, but they both sincerely seemed to love their children. They were just too afraid to go against the Prophet. Doing that could mean that the wives and children were given to other men, while her father would've been thrown out of the compound. Kyra also finds a friend and confidant in Patrick, the man who drives the Mobile Library. In the end, Kyra's spirit and determination will have you rooting for her and believing that she will come out of this ordeal as a true survivor. I highly recommend this book to any adult and to young teens 13+.......this would be an excellent book to read for a teen book club or even an adult one, for that matter. There is plenty to discuss!!! Here are some passages that caught my attention:

Prophet Childs would never let one of us check out books from a public library.
"We have our beliefs," he's said. "We have our God-given freedoms. And not one is going to take that away by brain-washing us with Satan's teachings."

Prophet Childs, as sharp as my Russian Olive thorns, has preached that a woman who dies pregnant or having babies, is a sinner.

Now Uncle Hyrum looks at me and smiles. He's won and he knows it. "God has given you to me, Kyra Leigh. You will do what He says. What the Prophet says. What I say."

"I take real excellent care of my wives," Uncle Hyrum says when we get to my front porch. He pulls me close to him. His arms are like steel rods. "I'm gentle with the new ones."

My face is bruised, one eye closing shut, both lips busted, split wide-open. I feel that with my tongue."The lesson of the kingdom," Uncle Hyrum says. He wipes his hand on a towel that one of the God Squad brought him. "Be glad it isn't worse, Miss Kyra."

This book was released May 12th, 2009, go out grab a copy and share it with someone else when you're done!!!

Other Reviews:
Booking Mama
Becky's Book Reviews
J. Kaye's Book Blog

I want to also thank Sarah Goldstein at St. Martin's Press for sending me an ARC of this wonderful book and in return I would like to give my copy away as a way to
Read it Forward -
a wonderful idea that has started with Marcia over at The Printed Page.

How to qualify for the Giveaway
  • Just leave me a comment regarding my review. Make sure you also leave me an email address where I can contact you if you win.
  • All readers are welcome to too!!!
  • The giveaway will close on May 20th at 9:00 pm (est).


  1. Great review.
    It does sound like a haunting book and I know that i would get so mad if i was reading this book. But it's a story that should be told.

    So I am in :)

  2. A wonderful, heartfelt review. Thanks for the opportunity to win, & for making your giveaway international :-)

  3. "213 heart-stopping, gripping, I couldn't put it down pages!!!!"

    I already have this on my TBR List, but the facts up above got me very excited. :)

    I'll put this on my sidebar of Give-Aways and I follow you on Google Reader, so I'll see the post of the winner. (I don't like to leave my e-mail on comments.)

    Thanks for the opportunity!

  4. I didn't really want to read your review as I wanted to read the book itself, LOL. Read it anyway. Sounds interesting! :D

  5. Wowwwwwwwwwwww.....Staci, this sounds AMAZING!!!!!! I have always been intrigued by the "why's" of those lifestyles...yeah, we can sit back and say...I just don't get it...but for them its a way a life and upbringing...sounds like an awesome book and loveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee your review!!! :):):):):):):):):):):):):)

  6. I got fascinated with the whole polygamy thing last year and read everything about it that I could get my hands on, so I'd love to read this one too. milou2ster(at)

  7. Even before your review I've been wanting to read this, but you really hooked me, especially as you personalized it 'I would run too.' It is so sweet of you to read your book forward, I'd love to win.

  8. I'd love to enter for this one Staci. It horrifies me also that 13 yr old girls are given to 60 yr old men. I can't even imagine how scary that must be for them. Polygamy is an interesting topic and for that reason I'd love to read this. Thanks for the giveaway.
    bj19662001 (at) yahoo (dot) ca

  9. Loved your review - the quotes you chose were really good - enough to tease but not enough to really tell you anything! I would love to win this one.

    kherbrand at comcast dot net

  10. Polygamy wouldn't bother me IF it were only amongst consenting adults - but the way it's portrayed in novels (like the one you reviewed and I'd love to win...), it's sick. Just sick!

    teabird 17 &&at&& yahoo dot com

  11. I love your review. As soon as I read it on Goodreads I had to add it to my TBR list. I normally wouldn't want to enter one of your give-a-ways, but I WANT THIS BOOK! So enter me, and please pick me. I didn't see any small print about family not being eligible so I am right?? What if I promise to pass it on when I'm done?? Just pick me, OK??!!!

  12. I have seen a couple reviews of this so far. It looks really good! The give-away idea is a great one. I might have to consider doing the same. :)

  13. your enthusiasm for this book is quite apparent, and I have to agree. This is a real issue, and to read about it from a young girl's perspective, is heart wrenching I'm sure.

    Sure, throw my name in please!

  14. Sounds like a really good read. I'll be adding it to my TBR list for sure. Thanks for sharing the review!

  15. Polygamy is a fascinating subject. I feel bad for the teenage girls being forced to marry men their grandfather's age. This sounds like a great read. Thanks for the wonderful giveaway!

    diaryofaneccentric at hotmail dot com
    Diary of an Eccentric

  16. Great review!

    I'd love to win this one!

  17. I love books that grab you from page one and won't let go - and I really want to read this one! Thanks for passing your copy on. :)

    nnjmom at yahoo dot com

  18. I can see why you liked this book, Staci. It does sound like a good one--meaningful.

  19. Sarah is sending me a copy too, and I am very excited to read it!

  20. Oooh, I'd never heard about this one! It looks great, with such a wonderful, original setting. I'm really curious about it. Thanks!

  21. I forgot to say, please enter me for the giveaway! :) email :

    karynlapierre at hotmail dot com

  22. The book sounds disturbing on some levels, but I think I would love to read it. Add my name , please.

  23. I like your review, it got me interested in the book.

    janetfaye (at) gmail (dot) com


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