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Born into the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Rachel Jeffs was raised in a strict patriarchal culture defined by subordinate sister wives and men they must obey. No one in this radical splinter sect of the Mormon Church was more powerful or terrifying than its leader, Warren Jeffs - Rachel's father.
Living outside mainstream Mormonism and federal law, Jeffs arranged marriages between underage girls and middle-aged and elderly members of his congregation. In 2006 he gained international notoriety when the FBI placed him on its 10 Most Wanted List. Though he is serving a life sentence for child sexual assault, Jeffs' iron grip on the church remains firm and his edicts to his followers increasingly restrictive and bizarre.
In Breaking Free, Rachel blows the lid off this taciturn community made famous by John Krakauer's best-selling Under the Banner of Heaven to offer a harrowing look at her life with Warren Jeffs and the years of physical and emotional abuse she suffered. Sexually assaulted, compelled into an arranged polygamous marriage, locked away in "houses of hiding" as punishment for perceived transgressions, and physically separated from her children, Rachel, Jeffs' first plural daughter by his second of more than 50 wives, eventually found the courage to leave the church in 2015. But Breaking Free is not only her story - Rachel's experiences illuminate those of her family and the countless others who remain trapped in the strange world she left behind.
A shocking and mesmerizing memoir of faith, abuse, courage, and freedom, Breaking Free is an exposé of religious extremism and a beacon of hope for anyone trying to overcome personal obstacles.
Rachel Jeffs grew up in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, the polygamous Mormon sect, which she escaped in 2015. Rachel lives in Idaho with her five children and two dogs.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By blueskies982 on 12-10-17
Heart breaking addition to the FLDS cult story
I first say Rachel Jeffs on the TV show "Escaping Polygamy" (she talks about writing the book on the show in an interview.) I think most of the reads who pick up this title do so because they've read autobiographies by Carolyn Jessup and Elissa Wall and "Under the Banner of Heaven".
Rachel said in the afterward that she wrote this book to help her process her life inside FLDS as the daughter of the prophet, Warren Jeffs (making her FLDS royalty), as a 3rd wife and mother of 5, and as a collateral damage in Jeff's well-publicised fall from grace.
Rachel describes a sequestered childhood with her beloved sisters, and her father's manipulative sexual and mental abuse. (While not described in graphic terms, it is disturbing!) I think I feel connected to Rachel because we're almost the same age. I couldn't help but think that I was beginning college when she had her first child.
The book is read by the author. Rachel is softspoken and has the cadence of many from the same background. The story is heartbreaking, but honest; matter-of-fact, but gentle in it's handling of difficult things.
Like I said in the title, this is a heartbreaking addition to the FLDS cult story.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful
By Pamela Plimpton on 12-06-17
One of the best reads about the FLDS yet!
I have listened to The Witness Wore Red, Escape and Stolen Innocence. All of them great, but this first hand account from Warren's own daughter was amazing! Insightful, heartbreaking & shocking. I learned so much more than the others, but all of them great reads!! Rachel's reading was sometimes hard to listen to when I feel like I'm listening to a child read it. But I also understand the horrid upbringing she had to experience, so am able to forgive that. Didn't take me long to listen to this book - it was GREAT!! Would recommend to anyone interested in this awful, terroristic cult & its deranged "leader". God bless u & your family, Rachel!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful