Tara Westover: Educated

Tara Westover’s gut-wrenching memoir recounts the story of a resilient daughter who grew up in a destructive, dangerous environment. Her father who had bipolar distrusted the government, its healthcare, and its educational system. Her mother suffered brain injury from a family’s tragic car crashed—no one was treated. One of her brothers was violent and abusive toward her, their siblings, and his girlfriends. Westover’s only way out of the family was education. After working in her dad’s junkyard for many years without schooling, Westover took the ACT test and enrolled in college. At seventeen, she stepped in to a classroom for the first time without knowing the cause of the Holocaust and the meaning behind the word “nigger”—even though her brother had called her that all the time at home. Through study hard and determination, she graduated from Brigham Young University and awarded a PhD in history from Trinity College. The vivid detail of her transformation from suffering to success is frightening yet empowering. If you are in doubt about the true value of education, get Educated.