Wife Number Seven by Melissa Brown
“I deserve a man who will love me, protect me, and cherish me. A man who would climb through my window to give me a way to communicate with him. A man who will put me first.”
This book was absolutely captivating. I’ve read other books by Melisa Brown, and they were good, sweet romances. Nothing wrong with them, but Wife Number Seven is on a completely different level.
Brinley is the seventh wife of Elder Lehi, a respectable man within her community. Brinley is a part of an extreme group of the Church of LDS who believe that everyone who lives outside of their community is doomed for the fires of hell. Brinley believes in this as well, but harbors secrets about herself that would destroy her family. One day when Brinley is out shopping for the household, she is robbed by a former member of her community. A man not much older than her named Porter. And he didn’t just steal her money, he stole her secrets and she must get them back….
I don’t know terribly much about the Mormon faith, but I know enough that this depiction is an example of an extreme interpretation of the religion and is (hopefully) not a typical community. Brinley feels out of place among her sister wives but is too naive and afraid to venture out on her own, despite offers of help if she chooses to do so.
The relationship between Brinley and Porter was a little bit too much instalove for my taste, but it’s understandable from a plot efficiency stand point for the characters to grow the way they did. I was surprised that Brinley was fine with pursuing a relationship with Porter, not because she was married, but because he was a drug addict. When you come from an unstable home, most people seek stability, and even Brinley knew she could not always rely on Porter even though they both loved each other. Despite these issues, the love the two characters had was beautiful and I was rooting for them to make it work the entire time I was reading the book.
I loved the subplots among the sister wives and other women in the community, seeing how they all viewed their situation differently and their motivations behind their actions. Aspen was the biggest surprise and my heart swelled with emotion for her towards the end of the book. The eighth wife Rebecca is the most sad example of how harsh this life can be on a person, and how the Elders screwed her up mentally into making bad decisions.
This is one of those books where I almost read it all in one sitting. I had to put it down once, for work of course, and when I got home I fired up my Kindle and finished off the rest of this book. I’d seen this book floating around Goodreads with some of my most trusted book friends and reviewers, and I just have to note the power of this website and its ability to introduce us to new books we never would have heard of before without it. This is the reason we all use this website, to discover new books and further our love of reading.
Anyways, I loved this book, and if any of you see this review and decide to give this book a chance, I hope you love it too.