Hrdlitschka, Shelley. Sister wife.

Author:Rosser, Claire
Position:Book review

HRDLITSCHKA, Shelley. Sister wife. Orca. 269p. c2008. 978-1-55143-927-3. $12.95. JSA This novel is a version of a dystopian story in science fiction, except that the society it tells of could be one that exists today. (The story of the Texas community recently in the news because of polygamy and marriage between older men and young teenage girls comes to mind.) Avoiding the inflammatory elements in such a story, Hrdlitschka uses three narrators, three young women, who have their experience with the community called Unity to relate. One of the teenage girls, Taviana, was adopted into the community just 18 months previously, escaping a life on the streets where she supported herself through prostitution. For her, Unity means family life and love and security--but she is never quite accepted because of her past. Celeste, at 15, is a beloved daughter. She has been dutiful all her life. But now her father is talking about her marriage, and the thought of an arranged marriage with an older man has become difficult for her to accept, especially since she is flirting with a young man her age and is eager to discover what she would like for her own life. Her own mother, only 32 years old, is very ill with a difficult pregnancy with her 8th child; the community doesn't want to seek the help of doctors, and Celeste doesn't want such a life for herself. Celeste's...

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