Saturday, March 31, 2012
Review: "Prophet's Prey" by Sam Brower
From Goodreads: From the private investigator who cracked open the case that led to the arrest of Warren Jeffs, the maniacal prophet of the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Latter Day Saints (FLDS), comes the page-turning, horrifying story of how a rogue sect used sex, money, and power disguised under a favßade of religion to further criminal activities and a madman's vision.
Despite considerable press coverage and a lengthy trial, the full story has remained largely untold. Only one man can reveal the whole, astounding truth: Sam Brower, the private investigator who devoted years of his life to breaking open the secret practices of the FLDS and bringing Warren Jeffs and his inner circle to justice. In Prophet's Prey, Brower implicates Jeffs in his own words, bringing to light the contents of Jeffs's personal priesthood journal, discovered in a hidden underground vault, and revealing to readers the shocking inside world of FLDS members, whose trust he earned and who showed him the staggering truth of their lives.
My Thoughts: "Who's that?" was the question I received from my coworkers when I told them I was reading a book about Warren Jeffs. To me, it was quite shocking that they didn't know who this person was. Jeffs has made national news off and on for the past several years and was even on the FBI's most wanted list so I assumed that most people have heard of him. So for those of you who don't know, Warren Jeffs is the now jailed prophet of the FLDS sect that predominantly lives in Southern Utah/Northern Arizona. Sam Brower, the author of this book, is a private investigator who was brought in to help in a variety of cases against Jeffs and wrote Prophet's Prey about his experiences with Warren Jeffs and the members of his church.
To start, I knew Warren Jeffs was a pig before I read this book but Brower exposes a lot of evidence that showed just how disgusting Jeffs really was. Brower includes parts of Jeffs' journals and information from audiotapes made by Jeffs discussing his marriages to young girls and one tape is even a recording of him having sex with a 12 year old! Brower's book basically allows the reader to see into who Warren Jeffs is, how he became the prophet of that sect of the FLDS church and how he cemented his authoritarian rule over the members of his church. It was pretty eye opening and I was surprised to see the extent to Jeffs' power over his flock. They even sat by quietly while he essentially used his father as a puppet when his father was too ill to lead the church on his own. I have been interested in this topic for a while but it never ceases to amaze me when I see how truly brainwashed many of the members of the FLDS are. The book did seem to end rather abruptly and I would have liked to see what had to people Brower helped after Jeffs was put in prison. There were several girls who escaped and brought charges against Jeffs and I would have liked to see how they are adjusting now that he is no longer a huge threat to them. In short, this was nonfiction written for the everyday reader about a pretty fascinating topic. 3 stars.