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Educated

Written by: Tara Westover
Narrated by: Julia Whelan
Length: 12 hrs and 10 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (92 ratings)
Regular price: ₹820.00
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Publisher's Summary

Winner of best autobiography/memoir and best female narrator at the Audies.

Selected as a book of the year in The Times, Sunday Times, Guardian, New York Times, Economist, New Statesman, Vogue, Irish Times, Irish Examiner and Red Magazine

Tara Westover and her family grew up preparing for the End of Days but, according to the government, she didn’t exist. She hadn’t been registered for a birth certificate. She had no school records because she’d never set foot in a classroom, and no medical records because her father didn’t believe in hospitals.    

As she grew older, her father became more radical and her brother more violent. At 16, Tara knew she had to leave home. In doing so she discovered both the transformative power of education, and the price she had to pay for it. 

Shortlisted for the 2018 BAMB Readers' Awards · Recommended as a summer read by Barack Obama, Antony Beevor, India Knight, Blake Morrison and Nina Stibbe. 

©2018 Tara Westover (P)2018 Random House Audiobooks

Critic Reviews

"One of my favourite parts of summer is deciding what to read when things slow down just a bit, whether it’s on a vacation with family or just a quiet afternoon...Tara Westover’s Educated is a remarkable memoir of a young woman raised in a survivalist family in Idaho who strives for education while still showing great understanding and love for the world she leaves behind." (Barack Obama) 

"Marvellous. There is no feeling like discovering a young writer who is springing up fully armed with so much talent." (Stephen Fry)
"A striking story, beautifully told. Tara is an incredible new talent...I was holding my breath through parts, willing her to be okay." (Cathy Retzinbrink, author of The Last Act of Love)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Phenomenal book

it's a superb book and you are hooked from the beginning itself. Highly recommended. Narrator has also done full justice to the story.

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Beautiful

It was pure joy to read this book. Don't miss it. It will make you cry. It will make you laugh. It will make you non judgemental.

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Dramatic & gripping narrative. But biased.

Gripping narrative. And extraordinary writing style. Julia Whelan narrative is grasping.

However, Taras memoir is, I felt, biased. Strangely she hasn't done single thing wrong her in her entire life as she kept on blaming every one else around her whilst giving little credit to her professors Nad friends.

Everyone around her pathetic where as she is a person on a pth to become perfect. Completely artificial memoir.
I have wen her couple of her interviews and it made my opinion even stronger. Her talk is artificial and no emotion in it. The emotion you see in the book is purely dramatic but doesn't sound real. Good writing style though.

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Enjoyed listening to this book.

It's a remarkable story of achieving one's freedom through education against familial constrictions.
Really good.

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Education transforms!!

A beautiful book which shows how education can break shackles in the mind and free one in a true sense. The trauma Tara endures in her childhood and how she comes to term with it in later life was just touching. Life was not a fairy tale for her but she emerged out of the chaos, that was her life, bit by bit and education held her up through the journey.

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A must read! (listen, in this case)

I heard about this book from none other than Mr. Bill Gates. And my god I am thankful to him for his recommendation about this book because it is a gem. I, a fan of fiction particularly fantasy and having less experience of memoirs, wanted to experience something in non-fiction and its safe to say that luckily I stumbled upon one of the best I could have read.
Educated is a memoir written by Tara Westover about her upbringing in a very conservative family in the USA and about her journey from working in the junkyard of Clifton, a small town in Idaho to getting her Ph.D. from Cambridge. She never went to a public school and was home-schooled by her mother, worked whole day with her father and siblings in barns and collecting scraps from junkyards. This book is about her relationship with her parents and her siblings. It is about her desire to learn and study but also about her struggles to question her father's very conservative views.
This book was able to make me realize that positive liberty is the most important liberty, to be free from the constraints of your own mind and opinions about yourself. It also gave insight into how a particular mindset from the parents can affect the life of a child. It makes you feel respect for Tara who went through such experience and came out strong on the other side.
It's safe to say that this book is a must-read for every single person who is a slave to his/her own opinion about himself/herself. I would like to quote Mr. Bill Gates, "It's even better than you've heard."

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Unstoppable and Fierce!

The narrator was charismatic and the book was amazing. I could not put it down. I would spend hours thinking about it when I wasn't listening to it. I would naturally go for headphones after finishing college. There were moments where I would tear up, pause the book, stare at the dark roof and continue again. This is a must read for every single person who either takes their education for granted or those oblivious to their privilege.

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guy wrenching and honest

rarely does a book move you and bring tears to your eyes.. this one does...and does it so thoroughly that I couldn't decide if I was happy that there was a positive ending or sad that the book had ended. the narration is simply outstanding, perfect inflections, nicely voiced characters... I'll be returning to this one time and time again...

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decent memoir

decent memoir..
good listen..
Tara Westover is a victor for overcoming all odds to get a PhD.

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Riveting!

a fascinating and searingly truthful account. wonderfully written.. EDUCATED by it.. feel blessed that I had got mine

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  • Charmaine P
  • 09-10-18

You can’t be off the grid forever....it ain’t ‘right’!

There’s another side to life that I don’t even know about.... What was this father even thinking in keeping his family off the grid. And, the ‘vasbyt’ and determination of one child to get a degree without ever having been to school ..... I loved this book and it’s really well written.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Nick
  • 08-04-19

An inspirational and thought provoking memoir!

Wow! It is amazing how adversity finds its way, uninvited, into people's lives and how they find a way, despite the most unbelievable conflict (often within themselves), to overcome such adversity and achieve such amazing human endeavour. Tara's story is amazing and her achievement despite set-backs is inspiring - thank you for sharing this very personal account of your life! I couldnt put it down, and have found this to be such a thought provoking read, and something which has made me grateful for some of the freedoms I often take for granted. Inspirational!

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  • Dilip Bhagwat
  • 05-04-19

Excellent story, narration and gripping!

It is difficult to believe that people with such conviction of God`s hand in all things done still exist in today's world

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  • smaller
  • 01-04-19

childhood thru violence, abuse, zeolous parents,

made me angry,afraid, hopeful, proud, Tara's search of her own voice, she must be admired

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  • jennifer smith
  • 10-03-19

Beautifully written by a brilliant young woman!

How terrifying to think how many more Tara's...brilliant young women... have been lost to the world through indictrination and the crazy zealots who oppress them.

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  • Ryan Fernandez
  • 06-03-19

Fascinating story

Kept me captivated, funny and deep and sad and inspiring. Explored life's wonderful complexity
. Highly recommended

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  • Tracey Henderson
  • 09-02-19

Brilliant book, about a tough life

I couldn't recommend this book more - while the challenges seemed insurmountable, Tara surmounted them. I admire her determination in spite of the emotional toll to be genuinely inspiring. Also, Julia Whelan did a fabulous reading.

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  • Richard Smith
  • 22-01-19

Magnificent read, incredible lives.

As a family this lot, got more than there fare share of drive. Admittedly most of the time they seemed to be running each other over.

What was incredible, was how so many of them made so much progress. Not a dull life between them.

it seems it doesn't matter what you believe as long as you believe it strongly. Change what you believe even but then do that with conviction also.

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  • Janel
  • 09-01-19

Speechless

I couldn't put it down. I'm very touched and deeply hurt (for her) by her story. I'm just speechless.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 26-12-18

Religion: good or bad

It never ceases to surprise me how many wrongful things are being accepted in the name of religion. Does religion come before humanity? I would love a follow up on Tara's life in about 10 years.

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  • David Bowden
  • 03-03-18

Wonderful, inspiring book on the value of education

While this book has plenty of grim stories of life growing up in a Mormon survivalist home, this is much more than a book about survival.

Westover makes this a book about education in its clearest, most uncynical form. This is a hymn to the benefits of stepping outside of your comfort zone and learning not to be frightened of making mistakes on your path to knowledge.

It is similar to JD Vance’s Hillbilly Elegy. Yet whereas Vance’s journey from hillbilly to literary star could only make you admire his determination & discipline, Westover’s is a more humane vision. She fails, doubts and self-sabotages yet never loses faith that acquiring knowledge about the world and her fellow humans is a liberation (even when it unsettles).

Most importantly she provides hope for us all: that hopeless ignorance is only ever a book or good teacher away from being transformed, if you have the desire.

Like Lorna Sage’s Bad Blood it can be a challenging read at times: but what sings out is not the badness she experiences, but the goodness & generosity she frequently encounters (whilst remaining astounding generous to her family’s flaws)

A beautiful, inspiring read

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 22-03-18

Extraordinary

This had me gripped from the beginning. Beautifully written. It's devastating and uplifting. Heart stopping and heart warming. One of the best books I've ready in a long time. Inspiring all the way.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Rachel
  • Birmingham uk
  • 14-03-18

Wow

I found this very shocking & sad at times.
I throughly enjoyed listening to the story of Tara’s life unfold.
I found it hard to understand how her father had such a hold over his children even after Tara had started a PHD her father still managed to cause problems in Tara’s mind.
A very brave lady, who managed to get herself an education of the highest level despite never attending a school.
I could not under stand why towards the end she felt she might have been guilt of wrong doing.
Sad thing us there are children today being raised in similar homes.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Timea
  • 25-02-19

Unique and great... but unfinished and incomplete

Julie Whelan is a fantasic narrator in this audiobook. Tara's story is fascinating and unique, but there is a slight irritation after finishing her book. After a way too detailed first third of the book about her childhood, we fast forward through life experiences and pass others in tangent, that would be crucial to understand the author's change in perspective. It feels like the author, despite her best intentions, still hasn't come to terms with herself and the family. The story has not yet ended, and Tara needs to do some self-exploration over things that are glaringly obvious to the outsider. Or at least it seems so from her book.
I almost want to ask the author to get, or continue getting counselling - and I would really want to hear her next book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 26-09-18

a tinderbox life story

a breathless and humbling story of survival and phoenix like success. A clarion call for education and understanding of mental health.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • David J. Carpenter
  • Huddersfield, West Yorkshire United Kingdom
  • 22-09-18

Outstanding

Gripping, haunting, disturbing, frightening, inspiring, courageous, uplifting, honest, heart and soul - just some of the words that come to mind in this must read. The journey to realisation and self worth laid out in uncompromising honesty. A privilege to be allowed to share the journey of this remarkable person.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Elma
  • London
  • 28-03-18

Autobiography

A well written account of the life so far of Tara Westover. Although I was hoping to get more insight into the Mormon faith. The book is very moving and is very descriptive, it feels very real. This will always be about perception though and it will raise it's own questions.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jude Davis
  • 17-04-19

Wow

Awesome story of a beautiful strong minded survivor of toxic family and faith. Will always want to read what she has written. Highly highly recommended.

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  • liz
  • 11-04-19

Mesmerising and Thought Provoking

A fascinating story from an outstanding woman. I find it difficult to believe she had no formal education until she was 18. Constantly thought provoking about how we learn about history. It’s such a personal story but, at the same time, Tara encourages us to realise how important it is to verify our sources of history, to glean history from a wide range of such sources and to be open to forming our own conclusions.
Great to listen on Audible- perfectly read.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-04-19

On my top 10 list of books

Breathtaking and unbelievable story about Tara growing up in a religious Mormon family in Idaho. Excellent written. Superb read.

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  • Zoonda
  • 08-11-18

LOVE in this family = loyalty to a bipolar father

Tara shows what it is like to be caught in the cycle of abuse and overcome it... eventually. This powerful book made me understand the grip of a family cult and the cycle of abuse.

Thank you Tara for having the courage to write it.

Unconditional loyalty to a bipolar delusional man is what this family defines as love and acceptance.

I found this interesting because many families have a similar premise and that is; in order to be a part of the family you have to pretend to believe the family lies.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Paul Taylor
  • 21-12-18

Best memoir I’ve ever read - and extraordinary work

A touching autobiography, both devastating and uplifting at the same time. It is a privilege to be let into Westover’s world; one of- heartbreaking family loyalty, but also the extraordinary power of education changing ones life.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-11-18

Memoir not to be missed

Fabulous book which invokes all the emotions. Hard to believe women could still be treated like this in the current day. Insightfully and emotionally written book about families, domestic violence, religious culture and of course the role of education in all of this. The narrator was excellent. One of my favourite Audiobooks so far

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Lisa
  • 09-03-19

A ‘jagged little patch of Idaho’ = a remarkable story of transformation

The multiple layers of this book are simultaneously bared and interwoven in a way which is very accessible despite most likely being beyond any frame of reference available to most readers.

There is a restrained steadiness in the telling of the story which is effective in keeping the reader engaged for the entire journey.

Westover’s personal journey and accomplishments are truly remarkable, particularly when set against the backdrop of her family life and circumstances, in that ‘jagged little patch of Idaho.’

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 20-12-18

Outstanding

Beautifully written and expertly narrated, this is a fascinating story that had me captivated from start to finish. Highly recommend.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Robyn
  • 21-04-19

Every young woman (or older) should read this

A beautifully read memoir, capturing every voice and every word of the author. Ruthless self reflection, intelligent insights, hope without once resorting to paliatives. Patriarchy and fear as they join hands with other economies no less powerful in their need to control. Thank goodness for the wider world and its broad hand in the raising of "our" children.

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  • Helen
  • 17-04-19

Extraordinary tale of family, loss & discovery.

Great performance, amazing story of education leading to loss and enlightenment. Tara Westover is a woman of enormous strength and this book documents her struggle to attain freedom along with the impact that has on her relationships with her family.

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  • Kim
  • 14-04-19

Fantastic

This is a great book. The narrator is easy to listen to and the story constantly had me on the edge of my seat.

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  • Ralph Mayhew
  • 12-04-19

Absolutely brilliant

So good! Can not recommend it more highly. It’s a wonderful window into a fascinating world. What a story of triumph!

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • LYNNEF
  • 10-04-19

A beautiful telling of a brutal story

So much joy, loss, heartache and self-doubt. It is so hard to escape the repetitious hard-wiring of a child's brain. The yearning for unconditional love from family is a recurring theme, but ultimately the redemption is gained by Tara's ability to believe in herself, speaking with her own voice.

She has made some terrifying choices to finally arrive in her own story. A brave and thoughtful telling of an immensely personal experience. I would love to be as self-aware as this impressive woman.

Loved this book.