Crew, Linda. Brides of Eden; a true story imagined.

Author:Lewis, Courtney
Position:Brief Article - Young Adult Review - Book Review

HarperCollins, Tempest. 243p. illus. c2001. 0-06-447217-5. $6.99. JS

Written with a first-person perspective, Brides of Eden dramatizes a true story from Corvallis, Oregon, in 1903. An attractive young preacher known as Joshua wakes up the sleepy hamlet. His fiery preaching electrifies the women of the town, particularly 15-year-old Eva Mae Hurt and her sister and mother. They abandon their comfortable middle-class lifestyle to live simply with Joshua's other followers and find themselves subject to intense ridicule and hostility from Corvallis' other inhabitants who are appalled at the women abandoning their traditional roles. Over time Joshua's preaching becomes more apocalyptic and self-centered as he styles himself a messiah, and it isn't long before he begins seducing his female followers, naive Eva Mae included. The movement comes to a head with the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, which is seen as the fulfillment of Joshua's...

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