I've read this, and her other book probably 5 times over the years. Why?? Because of it's honesty. Some reviewer's call her a "Mormon" but she classified her self as an early FLDS which mainstream Mormons do not want to be labeled as.
It was hard for me to find parallels in how her religion was USED as a way to control everything about her life. My ex husband was NOT religious, but he used the bible to control me because I was. I felt him pull it out and hit me over the head with it for anytime he thought I didn't follow his rules. He was raised Baptist...I was Church of Christ...the old timey sort that didn't allow pants on women in church...or instruments in church, etc.
A lot of the manipulations that Verlan used on Irene, in this book, was eyeopening to me for it showed me that similar had been done to me for years when I was young and stupid. I've seen other men, not religious, use similar manipulations on their wives...but when they can use the bible...it carries more weight. Wish I had read this back when I was 20.