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Shattered Dreams: My Life as a…

Shattered Dreams: My Life as a Polygamist's Wife (original 2007; edition 2008)

by Irene Spencer

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4292524,588 (3.7)34
Title:Shattered Dreams: My Life as a Polygamist's Wife
Authors:Irene Spencer
Info:Center Street (2008), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 432 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:non-fiction, extaordinary lives, polygamy, lonliness

Work details

Shattered Dreams : My Life as a Polygamist's Wife by Irene Spencer (2007)

  1. 20
    Favorite Wife: Escape from Polygamy by Susan Ray Schmidt (lquilter)
    lquilter: Sister-wives Irene and Susan tell their stories in Shattered Dreams and His Favorite Wife, respectively.
  2. 00
    Prophet's Prey: My Seven-Year Investigation into Warren Jeffs and the Fundamentalist Church of Latter-Day Saints by Sam Brower (rxtheresa)
  3. 00
    The 4 O'Clock Murders by Scott Anderson (dara85)
    dara85: This book also encompasses the LeBaron family, the brothers of Verlyn LeBaron married to the author, Irene.

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Showing 1-5 of 25 (next | show all)
I read Irene's book after reading her sister-wives book. Irene's story is heart breaking in her own right, but because she was older than Susan and an earlier wife, poor Irene has to live through so much more.

I enjoyed Irene's writing style, which was down to earth and straight forward. The book does seem to drag a bit, only because so much is similar - "Hey, I want to marry another wife" "No, I don't want you to marry again" "Tough luck", oh look another wife. Over and over again.

OK let's move to another dirt poor area and live where there's no heat... "NO, I don't want to" "Tough luck" oh look, another move.

Poor Irene, Through it all you really do feel bad for her. Irene really struggles with jealously throughout the book, natural enough, and by then end you are really rooting for her. You do have to question why she stays with her husband so long. But how she manages to survive is why this book is worth reading.

( )
  anastaciaknits | Oct 29, 2016 |
Irene grew up in a polygamous home and was raised in the FLDS church (Fundamentalist Mormons). Her mother got out of her plural marriage and Irene came close to not entering into one, but her fears of going to hell if she didn't convinced her... along with other family and her future husband, Verlan. She became his second wife; her half-sister, Charlotte was his first. Irene hated it! And she felt worse and worse about it with every new wife brought into the family. This is the story of her life with Verlan and all the other wives and her 13 children that came.

Wow, Irene had a temper! She was feisty, but the entire situation just battered her mental state down. Verlan had no time for her with all the other wives and working in the U.S. (they mostly lived in Mexico and they were also in Nicaragua for a while). They were extremely poor, which apparently happens with a lot of plural wives – with all the extra wives and children to feed. Good read, though. ( )
  LibraryCin | Apr 15, 2014 |
Hard, heartbreaking, annoying and in some ways incomprehensible. On the whole Irene was a young woman torn between the religion of her upbringing, and what she knew to be its truths about hardship and lack of success.

Bookcrossing: http://www.bookcrossing.com/journal/6557073/ ( )
  wareagle78 | Jan 22, 2014 |
Finished reading last night.
I thought it was a good book but compared to for instance Escape by Caroline Jessop this woman had a great life! At least her husband tried and my Gosh she was a complainer especially compared to the other wives.
Complaining complaining but every time caving in.

Because it interests me the Mormons religion and especially those of the fundamentalists I've read a lot of books. These people the only thing they do is make kids and a lot of them live from the governments and the taxpayers while they despise these taxpayers cause they are lesser people.
They raise there children and brain wash them into thinking they will go to hell if they do not live according to there religion.

The problem with Mormons is that every man can say what he wants and pretends God told him that, and as with islam this is a great religion for men but not for women.
( )
  Marlene-NL | Apr 12, 2013 |
interesting a peek inside what it is really like to be one of many wives and the pressures as well as the joys ( )
  lilwolfmisty | Apr 11, 2013 |
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Humor enables one to live in the midst of tragic events without being a tragic figure. -- E. T. "Cy" Eberhart
To my precious children, who made all my sacrifices worthwhile: Donna, André, Steven, Brent, Kaylen, Barbara, Margaret, Connie, LaSalle, Verlana, Seth, Lothair, and my little angel Leah, and my special gift from God, Sandra, who are both now in Heaven but live also in my heart.

To my husband, Hector J. Spencer, for allowing me to pursue my dreams, for loving all my children, and for always displaying a servant's heart. Thank you for making me not only your favorite wife but your only wife.
First words
Prologue: I edged sideways down the aisle of the crowded Greyhound, careful not to bump anyone with the bulky brown suitcase, which held my every possession: two or three plain cotton dresses, my undergarments, and toiletries--the sparse but precious contents of my hope chest.
Book One: Called To Be a Goddess. Chapter One:

As we were growing up, polygamy was the ruling tenet of our lives.
Epilogue: After all my struggles to finally choose freedom, it was tragedy that actually ended my twenty-eight-year marriage to Verlan LeBaron.
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Book description
The memoirs of a woman in a fundamentalist Mormon sect that promotes polygamy; her brother-in-law was the infamous Ervil LeBaron, who ordered the murder of scores of his co-religionists during and after his take-over of their church.
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Irene Spencer did as she felt God commanded in marrying her brother-in-law Verlan LeBaron, becoming his second wife at age 16. When the government raided the fundamentalist, polygamous Mormon village of Short Creek, Arizona, Irene and her family fled to Verlan's brothers' Mexican ranch. They lived in squalor and desolate conditions in the Mexican desert with Verlan's four brothers, one mentally ill sister, and numerous wives and children--Irene herself bore thirteen. The dramatic story of her life, and her escape to an outside world for which she was little prepared, reveals how far religion can be stretched and abused and how one woman and her children found their way to truth and redemption.--From publisher description.… (more)

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