Review: Keep Sweet by Michele Dominguez Greene

Genre: YA, Realistic Fiction, Religion, Cults
Publication: 03/09/10 by Simon Pulse
Pages: 215 Pages
Source: Library Hardback
Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars
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Goodreads Summary
Alva Jane has never questioned her parents, never questioned her faith, never questioned her future. She is content with the strict rules that define her life in Pineridge, the walled community where she lives with her father, his seven wives, and her twenty-eight siblings. This is the only world Alva has ever known, and she has never thought to challenge it. 
But everything changes when Alva is caught giving her long-time crush an innocent first kiss. Beaten, scorned, and now facing a forced marriage to a violent, fifty-year old man, Alva suddenly realizes how much she has to lose--and how impossible it will be to escape. 
 My Thoughts
This book follows a girl named Alva Jane who is apart of the FLDS which is a Fundamentalist Branch of the Mormon Church. This community practices polygamy. I have been interested in this topic for awhile but it was still tough to read from the voice of someone in the community. This is a fictional story but as far as I can tell it's realistic to events that really happen in the community. 
This story itself was pretty good, but it wasn't exceptional. I learned a lot about the FLDS community and the situations that a lot of the girls are put in. The plot is realistic, as far as I can tell. The sequence of events that Alva is forced to go through really would drive the decisions she made if this happened in real life. Alva is a strong character, she shows a great deal of character development. In the beginning, she was blindly following the faith but after a series of events she starts to think more critically about the religion and community she is trapped in. 

This is a very short book, only just over 200 pages but I think that it was a perfect length to tell the story that was needed to be told. The story was fast paced and didn't drag. I had a few issues with this book, first the book was written in Alva's point of view so in the beginning she was still very brain washed. This was good to show character development but I found I was kind of being preached at. I also found it hard to read from the view of a girl who thought she was a possession for a man. I was prepared for that when I started reading but the feminist in me just couldn't take it. 

In Conclusion: Keep Sweet was a decent book. I enjoyed it but I wasn't blow away by any means. If you are interested in the FLDS or cults then I would check out this book. It does tell what could be a realistic story from someone in the community. Very quick and interesting read.

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