Amy's Reviews > I Am Not Esther

I Am Not Esther by Fleur Beale
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Jan 30, 10

liked it

I was perusing the YA shelves while my son was and grabbed this one. The language was simple, and it was rather predictable, but it managed to keep me entirely ticked off through the whole thing!

It reaffirmed my opinion that there is no reason that you should ever forsake your children...and most certainly not in the name of your religion! It also reaffirmed my theory that most- if not all- members of these ridiculous cult-like backward communities that do not allow any outside influence, schooling, music, or even written words, are nothing more than insecure, prejudice, controlling nutjobs. (I know- don't get me started,) but faith is a deeply personal venture. It is impossible to insist a human being give up every ounce of themselves to honor a faith that YOU have chosen for them. If this is a personal choice that you have made as an adult, then fine. I'm socially liberal...to each their own! It is not fine to inflict corporal punishment, banish your child to the street, or literally beat them up for "sins" as ghastly as wanting to go to college, or even (gasp) draw some beautiful pictures that do not include a bible verse.

Seriously, I wanted to jump into this book and spit on several of the characters. Thankfully this had a satisfying ending, but I was appalled to read that the author is "a former teacher who was inspired to write this novel when a student was beaten up and expelled from his family for going against their religious beliefs". That literally made me sick to my stomach. Can you tell that I am a tad passionate about this issue?

So in a nutshell, the protagonist- at the age of 15- is dropped into a family of said culture after her mother disappears. I would have given it more stars, but I think the reason I couldn't put it down was because I couldn't wait to see the nutjobs put in their place. Worth the read if you have a day or less- it's super quick.
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