The Book of Mormon Girl: A Memoir of an American Faith
By Joanna Brooks
Free Press, 2012. 209 pgs. Biography
Joanna Brooks grew up a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Her home life was filled with support and spirituality established by parents firmly anchored to their religious beliefs. She thought she knew exactly what she wanted from life and where she would end up; eternally married to a return missionary, and establishing a loving Mormon home. But, as she stepped out on her own, attending Brigham Young University, she started to question some of the decisions and policies of ranking church officials. Her journey to come to terms with the truths she was raised embracing and the conflicting beliefs she felt compelled to fight for, paints a fascinating scene of heartache, forgiveness, and faith.
I had expected Brooks’ autobiography to include more of a portrait of the Mormon faith. Instead I found a depiction of the Mormon culture, an important distinction I felt was completely overlooked. Her conflicted feelings concerning the church are eloquently shared, though I did feel she inappropriately described the experiences of her youth as the experiences of all LDS children. Definitely an interesting memoir describing a unique perspective of the LDS culture.