Cut me loose by Leah Vincent
Reviewed by Moirae the fates book reviews
Leah Vincent was born into the Yeshivish community, a fundamentalist sect of ultra-Orthodox Judaism. As the daughter of an influential rabbi, Leah and her ten siblings were raised to worship two things: God and the men who ruled their world. But the tradition-bound future Leah envisioned for herself was cut short when, at sixteen, she was caught exchanging letters with a male friend, a violation of religious law that forbids contact between members of the opposite sex. Leah's parents were unforgiving. Afraid, in part, that her behavior would affect the marriage prospects of their other children, they put her on a plane and cut off ties. Cast out in New York City, without a father or husband tethering her to the Orthodox community, Leah was unprepared to navigate the freedoms of secular life. She spent the next few years using her sexuality as a way of attracting the male approval she had been conditioned to seek out as a child, while becoming increasingly unfaithful to the religious dogma of her past. Fast-paced, mesmerizing, and brutally honest, Cut Me Loose tells the story of one woman's harrowing struggle to define herself as an individual. Through Leah's eyes, we confront not only the oppressive world of religious fundamentalism, but also the broader issues that face even the most secular young women as they grapple with sexuality and identity. (Synopsis provided by goodreads)
After reading Debroah Feldmans book, I wanted to read more stories of women in a different sect of Judaism then I am familiar with. Vincent's book was about the Yeshivish community, that is one I am not familiar with, so I promptly ordered the book and eagerly awaited it's arrival hoping to learn about this sect of Judaism.
I was left wanting more. I wish she would have told the readers more about her childhood and her background and why she was sent away. Honestly, this was more about her sexual experiences after leaving, which at times for me felt a little like over sharing, but that is just me and could be partly due to my upbringing and my own religious views. (It's just not spoken of that bluntly in my circles.)
Yes, I know it's said right in the description about the sexual aspect of the book, but I was not expecting it to be that blunt.
Aside from that, I did enjoy the book well enough, and I felt that she had a unique voice and I did learn a little about a new sect of Judaism.
If you are uncomfortable with blunt speak about sexuality, this book may not be for you, if that doesn't bother you and you want to learn about a lesser known sect of Judaism, then this may be the book for you. I would however pick up another book by Vincent.
So say we all!