the chosen one: a novel
by Carol Lynch Williams
young adult fiction
Kyra has grown up in a polygamist cult called "The Chosen Ones". For her first thirteen years she doesn't question the fact that she has three mothers and twenty plus siblings. They live happily in three trailers on the edge of the compound. Kyra has always been a little restless and likes to wander all over the compound, even daring to go beyond the fence on several occasions. This is how she comes to discover the Ironton County Bookmobile. She begins a life of secrecy with her treasured books tucked away in her special tree. Her secret life expands when she begins to spend time with Joshua, a boy whom she hopes to choose for herself. Her life falls apart when the Prophet has a vision seeing her married to her 60-year old Uncle Hyrum! She only has four weeks to decide if she is going to submit to a life she does not want or escape and maybe never see her beloved family again.
This is a truly heart-breaking novel. On more than one occasion it brought tears to my eyes both from sadness and from joy at the bravery and heart of Kyra. She is an amazing character who I quickly became attached to. The author's charcterization was so great that I felt a connection with each and every one of them, even Patrick the driver of the Bookmobile. An excellent book on a little-discussed subject. I think just knowing that this really has happened and is happening in many places, some within a few hours of where I live, made it even more emotional for me.