Lost Boy: The True Story of One Man's Exile from a Polygamist Cult and His Brave Journey to Reclaim His Life
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Lost Boy: The True Story of One Man's Exile from a Polygamist Cult and His Brave Journey to Reclaim His Life

3.74 of 5 stars 3.74  ·  rating details  ·  1,709 ratings  ·  221 reviews
In the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (FLDS), girls can become valuable property as plural wives, but boys are expendable, even a liability. In this powerful and heartbreaking account, former FLDS member Brent Jeffs revealsboth the terror and the love he experienced growing up on his prophet’s compound—and the harsh exile existence th...more
Paperback, 264 pages
Published July 13th 2010 by Broadway Books (first published January 1st 2009)
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Mindi
After reading Krakaur's "Under the Banner of Heaven" I was fascinated by the mormon religion and its ability to constantly adapt through its "Prophet" who can change any aspect of the religion, at any time, through divine revelation and reinterpretations of religious texts. When the Prophet rescinded polygamy, the FLDS splintered from the main church and continued to believe that polygamy was necessary to reach the highest levels of heaven.

This book is the biography of a man who grew up within a...more
Eva Leger
Crap. I forgot to write the review when I was finished this. Those who know me well know my memory. All I can say is this is worth reading. It's a good book, tells a lot about the community where Brent W. Jeffs grew up. I'd recommend reading it in addition to some other memoirs, authors like Carolyn Jessop, Elissa Wall, etc.
What Warren Jeffs did to Brent is atrocious and the fact that this man lived through all of it, and what came afterward as a direct effect of Jeffs' actions towards Brent's...more
Mazola1
Raised in a polygamous FLDS household, one of the dozens of grandchildren of the FLDS prophet, son of a man who didn't always see eye to eye with his powerful father, sexually abused as a child by one of the sons of the prophet, Brent Jeffs came to understand that it wasn't going to be his destiny to be one of the few FLDS men who married multiple wives and wielded great power in the sect. Instead, he became a "lost boy," one of the expendable young males the sect didn't care about, and threw aw...more
Colleen
I have read many of books focusing on polygamy and the FLDS. Ridiculous situations I can barely fathom interest me, and this is no exception! I thought when I began this book that it was going to be another well written story about the FLDS cult, and it was, but it was so much more! I truly felt that I received a first person account of what it was like to live in the compound under Warren Jeffs and be subjected to, basically, mind control. Brent Jeffs also happens to be the nephew of Warren Jef...more
Tony
Brent W. Jeffs- Lost Boy (Broadway Books 2009) 5 Stars

Normally I would do my own summary of the book, but in this case I think that the author is the best person to summarize this portion of his life. Jeffs is the nephew of Warren Jeffs, the imprisoned leader of the FLDS. The son of a prominent family in the church, Brent could have grown up to have multiple wives of his own and significant power in the 10,000-strong community. But he knew that behind the group’s pious public image—women in chas...more
Nancy
I have to admit I have a bit of a morbid fascination about FLDS. I've mostly thought about it from a woman's point of view (see Escape by Carolyn Jessop for some insight). When I saw this book on the Goodreads Giveaway list, I entered the contest right away. I was eager for a opportunity to read about the group from a male perspective.

Most of Lost boy is a fast-paced engaging read. The author Brent Jeffs surely owes a lot to his collaborator, Maia Szalavitz in describing life with his family in...more
Deborah Ideiosepius
A fascinating book about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. This group is a splinter off of the American Christian group the Mormons. While I was vaguely aware of the existence of both groups I didn’t know too much about either and in order to set the story and provide a back-history this book gives a very concise and easy to follow background of both.

This book is the autobiography of a young man who grew up as a boy in the system of the ‘FLDS’ as it is acronymed throughout the boo...more
Katie
The topic of the book instantly drew me in as I was cataloging it; a boy who had grown up FDLS divulges secrets about life on the compound, polygamy, and the sexual abuse he experienced at the hands of the prophet. The writers/creators of the television show Big Love based some of the traits of Juniper Creek on FDLS and, in general, I find these closed communities to be very interesting. I expected that this book would be right up my alley.

The writing is fairly poor - choppy and often disorienti...more
Lain
I sincerely regret the pain and suffering that Brent Jeffs went through as a child in the FLDS polygamist group. I read this book in hopes of understanding more about what it was like to be raised in such an environment. I got a clear picture of the brainwashing that can occur, and how absolute power can and probably will corrupt absolutely.

The story is a harrowing one, and the life he lived is something no child should ever have to endure.

The book itself was not that interesting, I hate to say...more
Kristen
Wow! This novel is an all-consuming experience. Brent Jeffs has such courage and strength for attending therapy to deal with his traumatic past, sharing his story, prosecuting the man of his nightmares, Warren Jeffs and for surviving life in the FLDS and now thriving in the 'outside world'.
A fascinating, fast-paced, disturbing read. I highly reccomend it to everyone. It is particularly interesting to hear the perspective of one of the young men from the FLDS as I find myself well-informed on th...more
Paula
I am becoming fascinated with this topic so I enjoyed reading this book. However, the way it was written was just a little too factual for me and not a kind of "kept me on the seat of pants" type read.

I do recommend it though if you are interested in learning more about the lives of the people affected by the the FLDS. Such a sad cycle of abuse and lack of freedom that these people have. It is so very sad to me that they simply don't know any different or realize that they do have the choice in...more
Kimberly
This book is a memoir of Brent Jeffs, nephew of Warren Jeffs, and his story of growing up in a polygamist family.

If you want a true taste of life in the FLDS, this book isn't the place to find it. Brent's family didn't grow up in Hilldale and the family seemed a bit more progressive; the family was also excommunicated early in Brent's life. If you want to more of an idea of FLDS life, the books by Elissa Wall or Carolyn Jessop are a better place to start.

However, the author of this book does giv...more
Jonah
This is part history and part memoir. The writing is easy to follow and kept my attention, although at times the relationships of the characters became hard to follow.
I can pretty easily imagine this book as if it were somebody just talking to me, having an animated conversation. The person speaking, however, is not especially learned, does not have particularly impressive insight, and just isn't very far along in his life- it's hard for a young adult to write a good memoir. He comes across as a...more
Libby Gordon
This is the third book I've read about this particular polygamist group that splintered off from the Mormon church and although it contained more history of the foundations of this group and more about the "lost boys" than I've ever read ( I've read Stolen Innocence: My Story of Growing Up in a Polygamous Sect, Becoming a Teenage Bride, and Breaking Free of Warren Jeffs by Elissa Wall and The Witness Wore Red: The 19th Wife Who Brought Polygamous Cult Leaders to Justice by Rebecca Musser); this...more
Dorian Drage
I am somewhat bias , because I am friends with Brent Jeffs. I met Brent in 2010, and for a few months, knew nothing of his past. After having gotten to know him I became more and more interested in his story. I read his book in a few days and could hardly put it down. I was amazed to learn what his life had been, simply because the man I know and have come to respect doesn't seem to be a reflection of his past. It is a very interesting and easy read. It peaked my interest and prompted my very ne...more
Amanda Morgan
Reading this book, it’s difficult to remember the man writing this is only twenty-seven years old and has been excommunicated from his fundamentalist church for roughly ten years. The maturity level and forthrightness comes from a voice much older and wiser than one would think Brent W. Jeffs should be.
“Lost Boy: The True Story of One Man’s Exile from a Polygamist Cult and His Brave Journey to Reclaim His Life” is written by the nephew of Warren Jeffs, the currently-imprisoned former leader of...more
Michael Foley
Revealing. Yet as always, when dealing with this subject, it is difficult to know what is hearsay and what is fact. Surely the author was abused, and his personal experiences are true. Much of the book though deals with rumors, and when he misquotes Mormonism's history, it throws a shadow of doubt upon other facts.

My dream is to one day find a book written by someone who was in the FLDS, was kicked out by no fault of his own, then in normal life came to realize the life he was living in the FLDS...more
Awallens
In the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (FLDS), girls can become valuable property as plural wives, but boys are expendable,
even a liability. In this powerful and heartbreaking account, former FLDS member Brent Jeffs reveals both the terror and the love he experienced growing
up on his prophet’s compound—and the harsh exile existence that so many boys face once they have been expelled by the sect.

Brent Jeffs is the nephew of Warren Jeffs, the imprisoned leader...more
Anne Hawn Smith
This is the forth book on this subject which I have read recently. It covers a different perspective than the others. It concerns the boys who were raised in the Fundamentalist Church of the Latter Day Saints (FLDS)and were either forced out by the prophet, Warren Jeffs, or who ran away. Boys were undervalued in this society because the church leaders often had 40, 60 or more wives and they married girls as young as 12. There was always a need for more young girls, but that left scores of boys f...more
Gwen
Brent W. Jeffs is a so-called "Lost Boy" from the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He grew up within the religious community, struggling to believe what he was taught versus what he felt in his heart. Warren Jeffs is the most recent prophet of the religion and Brent's uncle. He is also the person arrested and convicted for marrying underage girls and marrying too many woman.

Brent presents an eye-opening view of this quiet, isolationist religion, from his perspective....more
Adrianna Usticke
I definitely enjoyed this book overall, because I got to learn a lot about the polygamist lifestyle. The book was very good, and I enjoyed it even though it had some sad parts, such as Clayne’s suicide. I learned that Brent W. Jeffs did not enjoy being in a polygamist family because he always felt alone because he had so many siblings and with that many not every child got attention that they needed. Also Brent did not want to live the polygamist lifestyle and have multiple wives.
I learned that...more
Michelle
I want to get this out first. This was one of the most horribly written books I have ever had to read. The content was good, however I'm not sure this book ever saw an editor or was proof read. Talk about being all over the place. On once sentence he is talking about something that happened when he was 5 and then in the next he's 14. All throughout the book it went like this. Sometimes it would get confusing as to what age he was in or exactly what situation was going on. At times it was confusi...more
Tina Smith
This was a fascinating book that I felt I learned a lot from. The abuse of the children in the FLDS is difficult to read but I found the culture of this polygamous sect fascinating. After reading this book, I had to immediately jump into another book by another former FLDS member, Elissa Walks (Stolen Innocence). Another fascinating read, but from a girl's perspective.

One troubling thing, however...and I Googled to find any mention of this and so far have found none. So I wonder if I'm the only...more
Liz
Well, I was interested in this book because it is the story of a nephew of Warren Jeffs who has left the FLDS. However, the cover makes it look like the book is about boys who are shoved out of the city to allow the women to marry the older husbands who already have multiple wives. But this author left the church on his own because he was disillusioned and very rebellious. He later has memories return and realizes he was abused by Warren when he was very young. The book is sad, and on some point...more
Louise
Brent Jeffs is the nephew of Warren Steed Jeffs the now imprisoned former leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, also known as the FLDS. The FLDS is a polygamous Mormon sect which was run by Rulon Jeffs, Warren’s father and Brent’s grandfather. Warren is now serving two consecutive terms of five years to life and is facing additional charges of sexual misconduct with minors.

The story is based on Brent’s own memories and recollections of people who were close to...more
Wrighty
In the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS), girls can become valuable property as plural wives but boys are expendable, even a liability. In this powerful and heartbreaking account, former FLDS member Brett Jeffs reveals both the terror and the love he experienced growing up on his prophet's compound - and the harsh exile existence that so many boys face once they're expelled from the sect.

The most memorable FLDS member in current time is past leader Warr...more
Tlingit
This was an interesting read. I think the author is more damaged than he thinks. He believes that the "lost boys" are worse off because they typically have no connection with their families after they leave or are kicked out by this church. While reading though I felt worse for the women and girls raised to believe they were "second class citizens" in this society. Used for their bodies and trapped in a church that treated them as chattle their decisions to leave became more and more directed by...more
Curtis
This is an important story told by a victim of horrible acts. I will not fault the author for level of writing exhibited here as Brent Jeffs is not a writer. I did come into this story thinking it was coming from one who was kicked out of his religion, community and family - a true Lost Boy. Brent was never kicked out but chose to leave. His family never rejected him nor his brothers (a fact which got them excommunicated). Having stated that, Brent was definitely a victimized by Warren Jeffs as...more
Kristen
The nephew of a Mormon sect leader chronicles life in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and what came after. Among a 10,000-member Mormon community, Jeffs grew up with three mothers, more than a dozen siblings, and a deep fear of the world outside of the church. Within the secretive community, Jeffs was taught that purity came from special attention to dress, hard work, generosity and, most importantly, obedience to one's elders (especially his uncle, the prophet Wa...more
Christine
Another book written by a child growing up in the Fundamentalist Mormon church under the rule of the "Jeff's" Family.
Some of the abuse was rather vivid and made me uncomfortable to read so I passed over it. Again, as I did when reading Elissa's story, I felt the author needed to beg the reader to believe his story. Not that it is unbelieveable, considering how many people have come foreward, but because so many of the people who stay in the faith are denying any negative stories.
I felt his p...more
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