Tuesday, August 5, 2014

My Story

My Story
By Elizabeth Smart with Chris Stewart
St. Martin's Press, 2013. 308 pgs. Biography

This is Elizabeth Smart's memoir of her abduction when she was fourteen years old in 2002.  She was taken from her home in the middle of the night by Brian David Mitchell and held by him and his wife Wanda Barzee.  She was sexually abused, threatened, and essentially held hostage for nine months.  It was very interesting to read Elizabeth's first-hand experience of this story, especially certain moments like being questioned by a police officer at the Salt Lake City Library, her experiences with her captors, as well as the faith and inspiration that helped her to carry on.

This was a compelling read, especially for those who haven't familiarized themselves with much of her story in the past.  I listened to the audio version of this, read by Smart herself, which lent an air of authenticity and reality to the dialogue and personal reflections. This book was very similar to Heaven is Here by Stephanie Nielsen, a Mormon who went through a traumatic experience and her faith helped her to find the strength to keep going.  I would recommend these two books alongside each other.


1 comment:

Liz said...

Elizabeth Smart was only a couple years older than me when she was abducted and so learning about what had happened from my dad, with warnings and urging for my safety, was a vivid memory of my teens years. I remember feeling personally relieved when she was returned home. Reading this as an adult was insightful, compelling and inspirational. It is very well written and instead of dwelling on the miserable abuse and horror of the whole kidnapping, there is an underlying drive of hope and love. The hope is what keeps you engrossed and reading quickly- because we want her returned home! Smart survived and is a happy, healthy and inspiring woman despite, and probably because of, this experience. Definitely worth the read!