It's a great story! You'll love Peri, a 19th century "she-ro," fearless and determined, haunted by a dark past forced upon her family. Only by discovering the "Treasure of Cedar Creek" can she find peace. The reader's emotions plunge and soar, intertwined in the lives of three young women who survive unthinkable horrors that rip a family apart - but bind them together in a quest to escape. Tracie Potts- NBC News
Published: April 2018
In 1896, the isolated and vast state of Idaho is a haven for the polygamous splinter group called The Kingdom of Glory, which is hiding more than their outlawed practice of plural marriage.
At the compound called Cedar Creek, the prophet is hoping to increase his congregation, even if that means marrying off girls to men decades older. When Peri, who escaped the compound years earlier, returns to help rescue Grace, a girl betrothed to the prophet himself, she ends up also saving her own sister Emma. As the three women make a frantic and deadly escape from the compound, they take with them both the newborn heir to the church, and their dead mother’s cryptic journal to the prophet’s hidden treasure. Along their journey, the women realize to truly be free they must face what holds them captive, even if those answers are more horrifying than they ever imagined.
It was done. I was now the wife of the prophet and had secured my place on the compound and in heaven. I would be with my mother again and secure that my children would be cared for, even if I wasn’t around. These women would accept them as their own and I would never have to be alone, hungry, or without a place to call home. My marriage to Uncle Deon made everything in my world secure and stable. It was right and it was good. That is what I kept repeating in my head like a mantra.
The humble, gracious demeanor Uncle Deon had always shown changed with our vows. His eyes were on me every time I looked over at my new husband. I didn’t know how to respond, so I looked away and tried to push the vision of his lewd stare from my mind. I was his now and I knew what that meant, but I hadn’t processed the reality until that moment.
As the rest of the members of the Kingdom of Glory filed into the chapel to share in our joy, I tried to smile and accept their kind words and blessings, but I knew as the time grew closer to the hour we would leave the gathering and I would have to face him alone and naked in so many ways. I was aware of my role to bear children and grow our family, but along with my fears of what that meant in our bedroom, I also feared that my secret would be exposed and he would come to realize that I was already with child.
About the author:
Brenda Stanley is a former television news anchor and investigative reporter for the NBC affiliate in Eastern Idaho. She has been recognized for her writing by the Scripps Howard Foundation, the Hearst Journalism Awards, The Idaho Press Club and the Society for Professional Journalists. She is a graduate of Dixie College in St. George, Utah and the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. She is the mother of 5 children, including two sets of twins. Brenda and her husband Dave, a veterinarian, live on a small ranch near the Snake River with their horses and dogs.