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I Am Hutterite: The Fascinating True Story of a Young Woman's Journey to Reclaim Her Heritage
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I Am Hutterite: The Fascinating True Story of a Young Woman's Journey to Reclaim Her Heritage

3.63 of 5 stars 3.63  ·  rating details  ·  1,917 ratings  ·  307 reviews

A Fascinating journey into the heart and culture of a reclusive religious community.

I Am Hutterite takes readers into the hidden heart of the little-known Hutterite colony in southern Manitoba where author Mary-Ann Kirkby spent her childhood. When she was ten years old her parents packed up their seven children and a handful of possessions and left the security of the c

203 pages
Published June 1st 2007 by Polka Dot Press
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Saloma Miller
A Hutterite Story

It was several years after I left the Amish that I first heard about Hutterites through a magazine article. At the time I was astonished that there could be a third branch of Anabaptists that I had never heard about during my 23 years of living in an Amish community. (The other two are Amish and Mennonites). Since then I have read more articles about Hutterites, but I was always left wanting for more information, which left an air of mystery and intrigue around them -- I imagine
Lacey Louwagie
Krystl tempered her bad review of this book by stating that it wasn't the type of book she'd usually read, which is a fair qualification. Unfortunately, I also found this book to be below average, and it IS the type of book I like to read. I've been particularly drawn to memoirs lately, but this one falls short.

I picked the book up because there's a large Hutterite colony near where Ivan grew up in South Dakota (I found out from this book that it was actually the first Hutterite colony establish
This was a wonderfully rich read, with lots of honest gritty details about the author's childhood living in a Hutterite colony ~replete with descriptions of the food, the constant companionship of the fellow Hutterite families, (most of which were large, with 7+ kids each), the banter and teasing, the unique clothing and the prayer meetings and leadership. Kirkby describes a happy childhood, where there is always an abundance of food and an abundance of things to do. There are many chores and th ...more
This is book is very special to me. I love what Mary-Ann Kirby says in this book '...for it is only when we embrace our past that we can find true fulfillment in our future' (p.228). Her statement spells out the reason for my own search for my family's beginnings.

Mary Ann was invited by a friend to write a magazine article about Hutterite gardens. But it turned into a journey into past starting with her Hutterite beginnings. Her family lived in a Hutterite colony in southern Manitoba, Canada. Hu
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Randi S

What's a Hutterite? Don't worry, I had no idea either. Judging the book by it's cover (I know, how awful of me), I figured it was a community of people like the Amish or Mennonite.

I was wrong and I was right. Of course the Hutterites are a community of people with the same religious, moral, and all other values. They dress the same. Their community is focused around their faiths (an anabaptist faith like Amish and Mennonite). And they are only found in cer
Jade Lauron
A little sticker shocked at first, ten bucks for a book just over 200 pages long? I decided I'd return it if I wasn't quite pleased with the book. I also thought Hutterites were some kind of Amish offshoot, which only goes to show you how totally ignorant I was.

So I learned quite a bit, and I've decided to keep the book, even though I still think the price is a bit steep. It's a good book, but still a seven dollar good book. On the other hand, since it's probably the only book she writes, and si
About twenty pages into this book I wasn't sure I was going to like it, but by page 50 I was hooked and I had a hard time putting it down. I was drawn to this book because I like reading about things that are different from what I know or experience. I think the author has a unique viewpoint, having lived the Hutterite way of life and then living in the world as I know it.

I found reading about a culture that I knew nothing about so interesting. I live in a province that has a lot of Hutterites i
So first, a caveat: at first glance, this is totally a chick book. I started reading it because, well, it was free (see the legal jargon below) and I am a fan of book books and freeness. The blurb on the back cover and the various promotions given make it seem as if the book is about a young girl's struggle to fit in to "English" society after leaving a Hutterite colony in Canada.
However, that was not the case at all. The book is instead mostly a narrative of life as a Hutterite. Of the 235 page
Courtney Oppel
Having grown up seeing the local Hutterites flood the box stores once a month and sell their highly praised produce at farmer's markets during the summer, I couldn't resist picking up a book written by a Hutterite, in which she provides vignettes of her life. Kirkby's story is a welcome glimpse into this otherwise closed society, and she talks of her community with openness, honesty, and respect. I appreciated learning about the history and current make-up of these communities, as well as their ...more
I was interested in reading this memoir because I remember seeing Hutterites all the time, growing up in Montana. In their old fashioned clothes, they were very noticable at Target or the supermarket. They were viewed as "other" and we kids heard suspicious and mostly improbable things about the way they lived and what they were like. I was hoping this memoir would unravel some of those childhood bigotries and paint a real picture of the Hutterite lifestyle and religion.

Instead, Kirkby writes a
Amy Elaine
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Lora Lee Hensel
I am glad I read this book about a family who left the comfort and security of a Hutterite Colony to make their own living on a farm in Canada. I chose to read this book because of a school day I spent observing and assisting in a Hutterite Colony school near Yankton, SD (BonHomme). A young man at the colony toured me (and the other teachers) through their agricultural and food preparation areas showing us a highly functional community. As a teacher, I came away discouraged by the school communi ...more
Krystl Louwagie
Once again, I don't feel as though the low star rating is completely fair here-this isn't really the type of book I'd be overly interested in, so it wasn't really written for me. No surprise that I didn't enjoy it a lot. But my mind was open to being interested in it, just not held that well. In general, I like books that aren't like real life, or books that I learn something from (like textbooks, and glorified textbooks). Not so much the in-between. I thought that perhaps this would fall into t ...more
I had never heard of the Hutterite sect before our book club decided to read "I am Hutterite" by Mary-Ann Kirkby. Founded in the 16th century in Moravia, they emigrated to the United States in the late 19th century. Because they are conscientious objectors, entire Hutterite colonies moved in Canada at the time of WWI. They live in "colonies" that typically max out at 150 members. Similar in some ways to the Amish and the Mennonites, the Hutterites are different in that they have a committment to ...more
Interesting, yet somehow lacking.

I admit I was interested in learning about the Hutterite people, and their way of life. This book is written by a woman who was raised as a Hutterite until her parents left the community when she was 10 years old. Then we learn of her struggles to fit into the "English" world, where even things as simple as mayonnaise are foreign to her.

In the end though this book just seemed to peter out, without any real wrap up or conclusion. Maybe that is how her life was. S
The fifth book provided to me by Thomas Nelson Publishers for review was I Am Hutterite by Mary-Ann Kirkby.
This book took me a long time to get through. There were so many characters and I really had a hard time following. It wasn't until I was more than halfway through the book that I realized there was a family tree and a Hutterite Language Glossary at the back of the book. Had I noticed that earlier, it would have helped immensely.
Reading about the Hutterites and how they live: feeling so she
Well, this is a book that gives a window into "closed" societies by an insider who really knows the lifestyle of Hutterites and Hutterite colonies. 25% of Hutterite colonies in North America are in Manitoba; when this book was written, approximately 100 colonies of 125 people each were major agricultural producers in Manitoba, having some of the largest agricultural contracts in the province.

So, even though they have a closed lifestyle with very fundamental religious beliefs, Hutterites are ver
Karen Chung
This book was a sheer and utter delight to read. Part of the reason may be because I grew up in a family still quite connected to our German roots, and I learned some German at home and in school; I'd also read a bit about the Hutterites when I was very young. But it was also eyeopening to read about somebody who was born and grew up Canada, but who eventually ended up experiencing mainstream North American culture like a foreigner in her own country.

The descriptions of life in a Hutterite famil
I found this book fascinating since I was completely unfamiliar with this religious-based closed community that has existed for hundreds of years. Ms. Kirby is a gifted story-teller but leaves the reader the final judge of whether the religious objectives of the community are served by the way they operate.

The author is Canadian and apparently these little-known, Anabaptist communities are quite common there. The families live in a communal setting, all work is done by assignment and families sc
Janet Eshenroder
I didn't know much about Hutterites before this book. Their simple life is build on community and German traditions. Unlike Amish and Mennonite communities, property is held in common, making Hutterite colonies one of the few successful attempts at pure communism (not to be confused with "Communism" practiced in Russia or China, etc).

The author had a very secure and comfortable childhood within the colony.I'm not convinced it was so easy for her parents. At age ten, her parents were compelled to
Informative and interesting account of the early years of living the Hutterite life and the joys and sorrows of being removed from it by parents who thought for themselves. We had Amish neighbors when I was a child and their way of life has always intrigued me. Although the Hutterites are not Amish, or Mennonite, they were part of the sect of Anabaptists (as were the Amish & Mennonites) who left Europe to live in religious freedom. The author grew up in Canada where her colony of Hutterites ...more
When Amazon offered a good deal on this book, I thought that earlier this year I had learned a lot about Hasidic Jews. Why not learn something about Hutterites? The book was well done, telling Hutterite history, Kirkby's family history, and her personal experiences living her first ten years in a Hutterite commune and later interaction with her grandmother and friends still living there. The same question bothered me with the Hutterites as bothered me about the Hasidic Jews. Why is it that a cer ...more
I Am Hutterite takes readers into the hidden heart of the little-known Hutterite colony in southern Manitoba where author Mary-Ann Kirkby spent her childhood. When she was ten years old her parents packed up their seven children and a handful of possessions and left the security of the colony to start a new life. Overnight they were thrust into a world they didn't understand, a world that did not understand them.

Before she left the colony Mary-Ann had never tasted macaroni and cheese or ridden a
**I'll refrain from rating since I didn't complete** I wanted to read this so badly, just to get a glimpse into the Hutterite colony in Canada and learn about the sect. Yet the first three chapters start in the third person narrative, and deals with Mary's mother (also named Mary). Every time a memoir doesn't start with first person, it loses me. Maybe I'll revisit after clearing my shelf?...
Donna Kliewer
A look into a world that I was unaware existed. Facinating!
Leigh Gaston
Fascinating glimpse into a different culture.

I enjoyed this book immensely. The author takes what could be a very dry telling of facts and information about the Hutterite culture and weaves a story of her heritage and childhood that is quite fascinating to read. I learned much about the Hutterite history and culture and realize that they are quite different (particulary their use of modern conveniences - appliances, vehicles, etc.) than the Amish with whom I would have lumped them together.

The e
Jeff Bottrell
I feel that everyone has a responsibility to educate themselves about different cultures - particularly those they commonly encounter in the area they live. For me as a Montanan, that means Native American cultures and Hutterites. Tonight I did a bit of that, reading I Am Hutterite by Mary-Ann Kirkby.

This is a very sweet autobiography told as a former Hutterite woman recollects her childhood within her colony. Mary Ann Kirkby strings together a series of sometimes touching, sometimes humorous,
Should be read by anyone who has encountered Hutterites. This memoir will teach you more about the culture than anything else you've ever encountered.

Heart-felt, and interesting.
This Hutterite community focuses on the families living in Manitoba, Canada and is told mostly in first person by a daughter, Mary-Ann, born in the 1950's. The Hutterites have many similarities to the Mennonites. Everything is shared -- food, chores, etc. Mary Ann's father becomes disillusioned with the choices made by the leader and leaves with his family. A culture shock prevailed, especially with the children in public school. Mary Ann makes the transition into "English" and becomes known as ...more
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“What I know with certainty today is that our humanity is what we have in common, but our cultural heritage is the special gift each of us is given at birth. Until we embrace who we are and really value the power it is meant to bring to our lives, we cannot realize our true potential.” 0 likes
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