I Am Not Esther by Fleur Beale

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Synopsis

A classic bestseller that's been in print for over 20 years, this gripping YA thriller follows a teenage girl caught in a religious cult. Imagine that your mother tells you she's going away. She is going to leave you with relatives you've never heard of - and they are members of a strict religious cult. Your name is changed, and you are forced to follow the severe set of social standards set by the cult. There is no television, no radio, no newspaper. No mirrors. You must wear long, modest clothes. You don't know where your mother is, and you are beginning to question your own identity. I am not Esther is a gripping psychological thriller written by New Zealand Post Children's Book Awards-winning children's writer Fleur Beale. In Esther she creates an enthralling and utterly compelling portrait of a teenager going through her worst nightmare.
 

About Fleur Beale

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Beale is a former teacher who was inspired to write this novel when a student was beaten up and expelled from his family for going against their religious beliefs.
 
Published March 2, 2012 by Random House New Zealand. 147 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction, Horror, Action & Adventure, Religion & Spirituality. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for I Am Not Esther

Publishers Weekly

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As do the men," explains soberly clad Aunt Naomi), Kirby chafes at the restrictions forced on her by her newfound kin: they dictate her style of dress and hair, forbid slang and even contractions, and resolutely discourage any ambitions aside from an early marriage and plenty of children.

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Publishers Weekly

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In what PW called "sort of a Handmaid's Tale for the junior-high set, Beal's engrossing novel peers into a rigidly traditional (and fictional) Christian sect."

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All About Romance

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When Kirby rebels against the restrictions, the entire family is punished: Caleb, Naomi and their children spend hours on their knees praying and waiting for Kirby to repent.

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Reader Rating for I Am Not Esther
72%

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