Becoming Sister Wives is the story of the Brown family and how the adults came together to build their polygamous marriage. The Brown family originally came into the public eye with the premier of the TLC television show Sister Wives that introduced the world to Kody Brown and his (then) three wives. The initial season followed the courtship, and marriage, of Kody to his fourth wife Robyn Brown. The book covers the marriages, and early relationships, of Kody and all four of his wives (Meri, Janelle, Christine, and Robyn).
The Story They Share
As someone who watches Sister Wives on TLC I was very interested in reading this book to find out more about the Brown family. Like more reality shows what the viewers see is carefully edited to focus on the episodes particular storyline. There are many aspects of the marriage that have only been briefly mentioned in passing over the last few seasons. Becoming Sister Wives introduces each of the Brown wives and gives them an opportunity to tell the story about how the family came together. Fans of the show are able to learn exactly how Kody met each of his four wives, more about their own immediate families, and details about their marriage that are often glossed over. I personally believe people who watch the show will be interested in learning more about the past conflicts between Meri and Janelle that have been referenced several times on the television show.
Alternating Points of View
Becoming Sister Wives: The Story of an Unconventional Marriage is told from the point of view of Kody and each of his four wives. The format is, in my opinion, perfect for this particular book. Each of the wives is able to share details about her own life, meeting Kody, her marriage, and having children more or less independently. Kody’s point of view chapters/paragraphs often add to what his wives have said by sharing his own memories of that time in their lives. Also, the sister wives often share alternating view points of situations that affected the family giving the reader a unique opportunity to see how each adult often has an entirely different perception of one incident.
What I Enjoyed
As I’ve mentioned before, I really enjoyed getting an opportunity to read about how a particular situation was perceived by each adult family member. Just seeing how they sometimes have wildly different opinions/perceptions of one situation explained (to me) a lot of past conflicts that previously were confusing. The book also answered a lot of questions about the families past financial issues, moves, and difficulties living polygamy. Since reading the book I do see the family in a different light.
Becoming Sister Wives was not the perfect book and there were things that I think could have been changed or omitted entirely. Primarily, the chapters that were written from Robyn’s point of view did not have the depth and that other chapters contained. Robyn’s first marriage, past life, and personal challenges were not really explored at all. Also, there was a LOT of overlap with the television show. Several parts of the book simply repeated incidents that occurred on the television show without expanding upon what happened in a significant way.
Overall I believe that any true fan of Sister Wives would enjoy Becoming Sister Wives: The Story of an Unconventional Marriage. However, I hope that the Brown family writes another book in the future that contains more behind the scenes situation. I would like to read more about the events that took place between seasons, how the family is managing households with so many children in college, and how Meri divorcing Kody truly affected the entire family.