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Sacred Road: my journey through abuse, leaving the Mormons & embracing spirituality [Kindle Edition]

Todd Maxwell Preston
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (194 customer reviews)

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Book Description

“The author eloquently shows the audience that there can be a life after suffering, and that the road to happiness is different for everyone.” - Reviews

Sacred Road is a deeply personal journey. The tale expressed is often tense, and yet the story is still surrounded in heartwarming and uplifting moments. Todd Preston is a master of crafting his all too real tale into something entertaining, suspenseful, and incredibly moving. The notion of spirituality versus religion is touched upon as one of the main themes, and opens doors for readers to take new things into perspective and really delve into their own thoughts of their personal senses of spirituality. Sacred Road can be heavy in this way, and so is best suited for adults or young adults who may be interested in this type of material.

Todd Preston's Sacred Road shows the audience the darker side of a Mormon life, coupled with an honest perspective not often seen in such literature. Even beyond that, Sacred Road is a story about moving on and finding who we really are, and what we believe in. It is a story about survival and what it takes in order to break free and learn from a terrible situation. The author eloquently shows the audience that there can be a life after suffering, and that the road to happiness is different for everyone. Sacred Road is gripping non-fiction at its finest as the reader learns all about Todd Preston, his father, and so many more people who affected his life in both negative and positive ways. Intense in its honesty, this story is meant to be read and given time to process on an emotional level with the audience. Because Sacred Road is an autobiography, there is the opportunity to feel as though Todd Preston is speaking directly and frankly with the reader. It is not in a diary format, and almost reads like a conversation. Preston does not ramble though. He sticks to matter-of-fact moments and hopeful anecdotes all within the truth of his complicated and incredibly interesting tale. This is what makes Sacred Road so very worth the purchase in order to add this book to any reader's library. - Reviews

Product Details

  • File Size: 540 KB
  • Print Length: 152 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Awakened Healing Ltd.; 1 edition (November 17, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00GR8R4BW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #353,663 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
43 of 50 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Found to be ponderous at times May 9, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
For those unfamiliar with the Mormon faith & practices this could create an unbalanced bias. Some of what was presented was just flat child abuse by an unbalanced man, not a religious practice or even encouraged by the religion. I often felt while reading that this author was putting a lot of blame on the religion while presenting actions of his parents. There was fact in much of what was written..there was personal bias, of course, and his own views on how the LDS "works".
I read the book..I would not read it again...professionally I have dealt with child abuse & this is a book that recounts many episodes of child abuse that continued into adult manipulation by his parent. It is not a book that was meant to entertain so much as to inform. Or perhaps it was just the authors way of cleansing some of his pain & grief related to his family & the LDS community.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Courageous, but not good April 6, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
I won Sacred Road: my journey through abuse, leaving the Mormons & embracing spirituality in exchange for a review.

I admire Mr. Preston for having the courage to write this painful story of his life growing up in a strict Mormon culture and living with a very abusive father. He is to be commended for his courage in telling this story and for finding his way out of a life where he was controlled in everything he did to a life that was under his own control.

That said, I was not terribly moved by or interested in this book, because I have read a lot of memoirs and novels about escaping restrictive religious traditions and recovering from abuse that are a lot better than this one. The sentence structure, style, and flow of this book are pedestrian. It was very hard for me to sustain my interest, and I actually just skimmed the last third of the book because I had read enough. Writing this book was clearly cathartic for Mr. Preston. Reading it was not terribly interesting for me.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sacred Road November 19, 2013
By Chevy
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A well written thought provoking insight into the life of a man fighting to follow his own path in life rather than a path chosen for him.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition
I received a copy of the book for this review.

Sacred Road is an intensely personal look-back on a period of life where the author struggled to deal with abuse and its personal effects and the effects on loved ones around him. It is hard not to see as a primary emphasis a struggle with the father and the author throughout this book. The author finally, if in a sense tragically, overcomes the abusive environment that is traced to his father’s family of origin and was augmented by the family’s experience with the Mormon Church. I write tragically, because in overcoming the abuse (taking responsibility), there were and are consequences for Todd and others (“innocent bystanders”).

Someone from the Mormon Church may take issue with Todd’s view of the church. The book does not cast the Mormon Church favorably. Throughout the book, seemingly in almost in every chapter the church is critiqued (lies, controlling, hiding, racist, ego, greedy). That Todd became a part of the Mormon Church is surprisingly, or maybe not so surprisingly, the result of Todd’s mother pressing her husband to join or face divorce. It was her way of dealing with the abuse. Todd towards the end of this book details his admiration/love for his mother in dealing with a difficult marriage. In this book, while the father is pictured as having some good qualities/intentions, the overall thrust is Todd’s father did not and would (could?) not deal with his own abusive past and the effects it was having on his current life and family - his choice for a fear-based controlling environment.

This is a sacred, spiritual journey.
Read more ›
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars well done February 3, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a great start Todd. Good on you for being bold enough to take the journey into the unknown and trust the outcome would be worth it. I enjoyed reading your story and hope you continue to write with such honesty.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Surprised April 25, 2014
By Justme
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Started out very interesting. He lost me when he left his four little girls. Not a fan. Apparently he has new family in a different country.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Gripping Story December 4, 2013
By Chrissy
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A gripping story of facing the truth in our lives, I couldn't put this book down. The writer takes you on the journey with him in his beautiful descriptive writing, a true story of personal growth I could relate to in many ways. A must read for anyone wanting to feel there is hope through adversity.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read December 7, 2013
By bob
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Interesting read about some ones struggles and triumphs. Well written and well lived. Recommend anyone to read this book. Thank you Todd for sharing your journey. Live well
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 20 hours ago by P.A. Yoakley
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Did not read so am not able to give this one a positive or negative review
Published 2 days ago by Dora M. Gourley
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Good read
Published 4 days ago by Amazon Customer
1.0 out of 5 stars Self-indulgent and not well-written
I am always stubborn about finishing a book once I've started it, and there have been times when I was happy I did, as the end redeemed what was at times ponderous to read. Read more
Published 5 days ago by cboyd
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
interesting read. an emotional ride.
Published 10 days ago by millie davis
5.0 out of 5 stars wow!
Great book, lots of food for thought. What a journey out of a religious stranglehold, everyone should hope and strive for such freedom within their own journey.
Published 11 days ago by Rebecca
4.0 out of 5 stars An essay of personal freedom
Although the writing is simple and uncomplicated, it conveys a message of triumph of freedom and life's beauty over dogmatic rules and constraints. Read more
Published 12 days ago by Happy Traveler
5.0 out of 5 stars fabulous
I learned a lot about the Mormon religion. It was good to learn that he understood their reaction to him turning away from the church. Read more
Published 13 days ago by Tency
2.0 out of 5 stars More an introspective than a retrospective
I thought the book was interesting but a bit too much navel-gazing for my comfort level.
Published 17 days ago by bcb
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful story
I was glued to the book from start to finish. I somehow identified with his religious experience. As a youth being brought up by harsh, judgemental, religious folks, left me with... Read more
Published 28 days ago by Muriel A. Culver
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More About the Author

Todd Preston was born March 7th 1973 in Hamilton New Zealand; at the age of six his family moved to Northern Utah. In 2009 Todd wrote a memoir titled Sacred Road - stylizing the beginning chapters through the eyes of a child.

"I felt the best way to capture the emotional turmoil was to see through the eyes of that eight year old boy."

Sacred Road will not be for everyone; it is uniquely different from your standard memoir. The journey is swift and the writing style direct. It is intended to create awareness surrounding abuse and its generational effects. In addition expose the potentiality of hidden abuse within organized religion. The dizzying affects of abuse in all its ugliness stains many if not all cultures. It is not only about Mormonism - Todd's father - or Todd Preston for that matter - the message is meant to bring transparency to such a weighty subject. I have painfully given heavy emphasis toward a favourite quote of mine from Author Natalie Kusz.

"As I am sure you know... writers are in the business of attempting to expose the human condition in such a way that our description resonates in the souls of other humans, and it is extremely gratifying to hear about the one or two times when something we publish succeeds in this endeavour."

Thank you Natalie for your eloquence.

Further more; publishing Sacred Road four years after writing it leaves quite a gap from my life situation then to my life now. I am currently revising and editing my second manuscript that will answer many questions as to how I landed back in New Zealand. The gross difficulty of leaving my four daughters in Utah and the massive task to be there for them. It will shed further light on becoming a Mormon apostate in the state of Utah. The crippling affects from active family members and the shunning of an active Mormon community toward those that dare to resign membership. Again everyone has a different journey I can only share the one that I have experienced.

Upon returning to Utah in May of 2010 - I was broke and almost homeless if not for a friend that feed me and put a roof over my head. The day I left New York I spoke with my father on the phone regarding my return to Utah. A direct quote from him that I will never forget.

"Why would you return to the lions den?"

I lasted six difficult months in Utah - I returned to New Zealand on a one way ticket in November of 2010. The ticket was a gift from a caring friend.

Love and Peace


PS - In a letter to his brother Theo - Vincent Van Gogh penned these words in regard to his freshly painted "The Potato Eaters" April-May 1885

'I've tried to make it expressive of a way of life quite different from that of cultivated people like ourselves. So I don't at all expect people to like it...

My interpretation of this statement - I care more about the truth than what an audience thirsts for; it is the honesty of humanity that we all crave - the dirt the blood of humanness; whether we know it or not.

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