Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Julie's Review: Educated

Author: Tara Westover
Series: None
Publication Date: February 20, 2018
Publisher: Random House
Pages: 352
Obtained: a friend
Genre:  Memoir
Rating: 5/5
Bottom Line: Brilliant; just like the author
Grab, Just get it at the library, or Remove from your TBR list? Grab
Summary: Born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, Tara Westover was seventeen the first time she set foot in a classroom. Her family was so isolated from mainstream society that there was no one to ensure the children received an education, and no one to intervene when one of Tara’s older brothers became violent. When another brother got himself into college, Tara decided to try a new kind of life. Her quest for knowledge transformed her, taking her over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge University. Only then would she wonder if she’d traveled too far, if there was still a way home.

Review: Holy Cow! This book was amazing! It deserves to be on all the lists. I don't really do memoirs but this was given to me by my boss/mentor/friend who absolutely loved it. To be fair it did sit on my shelf since this summer but it happens.

This novel will have you cringing, crying and sometimes laughing. Tara is a force to be reckoned with and you know early on that she's meant for more than mountain life. Tara is youngest girl in her family and has always had a curiosity about her. She's never questioned her family's lifestyle because she's never known anything different. She's never wondered about her father looming large over all their decisions. If he says they need to prepare for the End of the World, they prepare for the end of the world. Tara's education has been at the whim of her mother and father. When her brother Tyler leaves the mountain and goes to college, Tara begins to see that there could be a life outside the mountain.

In order to get out from under her father and away from the vicious circle in her family, she will have to uproot herself from the violence of her brother Shawn and learn to protect herself. Her family doesn't value the females in their family and no one in the immediate vicinity came to her defense.

Once she does leave, it doesn't get much easier for her. She will need to understand what is considered normal and try to adjust. This isn't easier for her and she struggles for years to gain the self-confidence she needs in herself.

This is a novel for all of us to read to know that we all can overcome those obstacles that everyone has. Some of us have more to overcome than others but learning to have faith in ourselves is something everyone can understand.



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