What a seriously twisted book. Great, but TWISTED. I’ve always found religious cults terrifying, and the actions and beliefs that Oakes has crafted for her fictional Kevinian cult are downright chilling. Obviously, since our narrator, Minnow, has had her hands cut off for disobedience. There are other interesting issues given voice here as well, including the stark black and white morality of our justice system. Is there a good reason to kill someone? Should there be leniency in premeditated cases where the murderer has been a victim of their victim? There are some tear-inducing, hopeful, and heartwarming scenes here too, as Minnow comes to terms with many different things while in juvie, but the general vibe I took away was one of discomfort and sadness.
Teresa Steele- Minnow Bly has spent the last twelve years of her life in the Montana wilderness with the Kevinian cult. She has no family, no education, no hands and virtually no self worth. When the cult compound is burned down, and the Prophet is found dead, Minnow is the one the authorities turn to for answers. As she adjusts to life in juvenile detention, and struggles with the decision to help the FBI, she is finally able to educate herself and dream. Stephanie Oakes has created a wonderfully strong female character with Minnow; one who isn’t scared to think for herself and who is able to dream, even after years of being told she cannot. Will highly recommend!!