Tara Westover was born in rural Idaho, the youngest of seven children. Her family was Mormon, but radically different from most practicing Mormons. Her father was strict to the point of being dictatorial. He did not believe in any government institutions, nor any schools, hospitals or doctors. Her mother was a self-taught midwife who concocted oils and salves that she believed cured all diseases. Tara, like all of her siblings, was taught by her mother to read, but that was the end of her schooling. She knew only simple math, no history, science or literature, yet through much perseverance as well as innate intelligence, she was admitted to Brigham Young University when she was seventeen and went on to earn a Masters and PhD from Cambridge University in England. How she went from being an isolated youngster who spent her days collecting, sorting and cutting scrap metal to a very accomplished young woman and how this affected her relationship with her family. is the plot of this remarkable memoir.