Loved Big Love? Transfixed by the Elizabeth Smart saga? Distraught when the dueling NXIVM documentaries wrapped up? Then you might want to fill the void with Black Widows, a highly entertaining mystery that takes on polygamy and cults run by creepy, grandiose, controlling, sexually voracious men—prairie-dress, poufed-bangs division.
British journalist Cate Quinn’s novel is narrated by the three sister-wives of an alternately charming and depressive survivalist named Blake Nelson. Though she’s kept it secret, first wife Rachel grew up in a horrific cult headed by the Prophet, presumably inspired by real-life monster Warren Jeffs, who claimed up to 70 wives as the head of an extremist Mormon spin-off sect. Ironically, the rehabilitated Rachel has ended up in a less authoritarian but still illegal mini-cult.