Published Date: September 13, 2011
Publishing Co.: Bloomsbury USA
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Any religion that tells you that you should be raping (stop saying ‘having sex with’, that’s just sugar coating rape) little girls, should make you turn tail and run for the hills. However, what a perfect haven for predators. Anyone tries to stop your rape of children, just start hollering about your freedom of religion and how you’re just misunderstood and people will back off. No one wants to offend someone’s religion, especially the United States government. No, they prefer to just pretend it’s not happening. Put it’s collective head in the sand to avoid the screams and suffering of children. Even though this book was published ten years ago, these communities are still very much active.
If you want/need a solid understanding of the FLDS and it’s history, I will always recommend Jon Krauker’s Under the Banner of Heaven. For a short summary, this cult (the most accurate term) is a group that broke away from mainstream Mormonism years ago when the church outlawed polygamy. Not a lot of women are not necessarily down for plural marriage, so the easiest way to deal with little ‘issue’ is to marry little girls who can’t say no. To make that even easier, you start brainwashing them from birth and demonize anyone who doesn’t live the same lifestyle. If the outside world is too scary, they’ll stay right where the predators can get them.
Also, there is a lot of incest.
On top of all the despicable things they do, the patriarchy of the cult functions much like the mob. They will find you, and they will silence you at all costs. They will stop at nothing to keep their steady supply of victims out of the hands of safety.
Now that I’ve set that little background for you, this is the story from the perspective of one of the investigators who helped bring down the leader of the FLDS, Warren Jeffs. The worst of the predators. It took ridiculously long, as you can see by the title. Nothing in government moves fast but building a solid case takes time too. Of course, as you’ll find out throughout this book, there are plenty of people who will stand in the way and try to slow things down even more. That is what is always fascinating about these big, true crime cases, how often things get bungled before justice can finally be served.
Sam Brower dishes out the details in this deep dive into Warren Jeffs and the FLDS. From brainwashing, rape, incest, power struggles, and hideouts, to big money, political clot and swayed journalism. This covers the full scope of a true crime story that continues to this day. It’s not really justice when the leader still leads his puppets from prison and children continue to be abused and families torn apart. Although sometimes redundant, this was a horrifying read that will pull you into a world that should no longer exist in this age and that you will have a hard time coming to terms with.