I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.Uncovered by Leah Lax
Published by She Writes Press on August 28, 2015
Genres: Biography & Autobiography, Women, Personal Memoirs, LGBT, Religion, Judaism, Conservative
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In Uncovered, Leah Lax tells her story--beginning as a young teen who left her liberal, secular home for life as a Hasidic Jew, and ending as a forty-something woman who has to abandon the only world she's known for thirty years in order to achieve personal freedom. In understated, crystalline prose, Lax details her experiences with arranged marriage, cult-like faith, and motherhood during her years with the Hasidim, and explores how her creative, sexual, and spiritual longings simmer beneath the surface throughout her time there. The first book to tell the story of a gay woman who spent thirty adult years in the Hasidic fold, Uncovered is the moving story of Lax's long journey toward finding a home where she truly belongs.
Leah Lax is the perfect Hasidic woman. Teaching young believers and speaking at conferences while raising her seven children, some would say her life was ideal. But as Leah ages she feels less sure of her place in both her life and her religion. Taking control of her future is scary, heart wrenching and freeing. Learning to become true to herself is the heart of this journey.
I was initially unsure of a memoir written by an ex-Hasidic Jew, as that is a religion that does not seem oppressive to me, so I feared it would drag. However, I am glad I read it. Leah’s life as it unfolds from a young college student in an arranged marriage to a strong women who follows her heart is a great journey. Diving into the intricacies of daily life shaped by religion and the men who interpret it, Uncovered offers a unique view of an old religion melded into the modern era. Leah’s triumph, merging her life as a woman of faith and a mother, with her coming to terms with herself and eventually coming out made for a powerful story. At times the story was slow but the telling was crisp and the emotions true. I highly recommend Uncovered for a different kind of summer read.