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1 Burnside Religion World- Controversial Literature

Inside Scientology: The Story of America's Most Secretive Religion

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Inside Scientology: The Story of America's Most Secretive Religion Cover

ISBN13: 9780618883028
ISBN10: 0618883029
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Review-A-Day

"You've got to hand it to L. Ron Hubbard. He might have been relegated to the minor ranks of science fiction writers except that he figured out that spiritual seekers in post-nuclear America craved a personal understanding of the self and the universe — and they would gladly pay for that knowledge again and again and again and again ...

Which is the delightful foundation of Janet Reitman's compelling, rich and courageous explanation of Hubbard's contribution to the 20th century, the religion called Scientology, now in its sixth decade. Yes, there are third-generation Scientologists." Anne Saker, The Oregonian (Read the entire Oregonian review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Scientology is known for its celebrity believers and its team of “volunteer ministers” at disaster sites such as the World Trade Center; its notably aggressive response to criticism or its attacks on psychiatry; its requirement that believers pay as much as hundreds of thousands of dollars to reach the highest levels of salvation. But for all its notoriety, Scientology has remained America’s least understood new religion, even as it has been one of its most successful.

      Now Janet Reitman tells its riveting full story in the first objective modern history of Scientology, at last revealing the astonishing truth about life within the controversial religion for its members and ex-members. We watch the singular L. Ron Hubbard transform a self-help group into a worldwide spiritual corporation, at one point running the church from his personal fleet on the high seas before establishing its base in sleepy Clearwater, Florida. As he became increasingly paranoid and reclusive a young acolyte named David Miscavige assumed control; after Hubbard’s death in 1986 he quickly purged the ranks and began to transform the church once again. Miscavige has overseen some of the church’s greatest triumphs—among them a controversial billion-dollar IRS tax exemption and Tom Cruise’s emergence as a vocal advocate—but he also has created a climate of fear and intimidation, according to ex-members whose stories of abuse Reitman shares. Reitman is the first to examine his twenty-five year reign and what it might mean for the future of the church.

      Based on five years of research, confidential documents, and extensive interviews with current and former Scientologists, this is an utterly compelling work of nonfiction and the defining work on an elusive faith.

Review:

"Anyone who missed the recent investigative accounts of the Church of Scientology will benefit from this exhaustive history of the controversial sect. A contributing editor at Rolling Stone, Reitman has expanded on her 13,000-word story on Scientology, which ran in 2006, to produce a detailed and readable examination of the life of L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of the church, and his successor, David Miscavige. The book is rife with astonishing accounts of the abuses of power, the purges, and the climate of fear and intimidation commonplace in the top ranks of the organization. What's lacking is a thoughtful analysis of what Scientology represents within the broader 21st-century culture, and why people fall prey to its ideas. Reitman plows through her abundant material without an organizing narrative arc; consequently, many of the chapters pile on without providing satisfying conclusions. The only hopeful conclusion Reitman offers — and most readers will agree — is that Scientology is shrinking, with less than 250,000 members worldwide. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

The first book to tell the full story of the most secretive religion in America

Synopsis:

How is it that America's most popular new religion is still its least understood? Janet Reitman sheds some long-awaited light on the ever-elusive faith organization, the Church of Scientology. Based on five years of research, access to confidential documents, and extensive interviews with current and former Scientologists, this is the first objective modern history of the notoriously secretive faith.

Synopsis:

“A masterful piece of reporting . . . Reitman tells a spellbinding story of a larger-than-life personality whose quirks, ticks and charisma shaped Americas newest homegrown religious movement.” — Washington Post

Scientology is known for its celebrity believers and its team of “volunteer ministers” at disaster sites such as the World Trade Center; its notably aggressive response to criticism or its attacks on psychiatry; its requirement that believers pay as much as hundreds of thousands of dollars to reach the highest levels of salvation. But for all its notoriety, Scientology has remained Americas least understood new religion, even as it has been one of its most successful.

Now Janet Reitman tells its riveting full story in the first objective modern history of Scientology, at last revealing the astonishing truth about life within the controversial religion for its members and ex-members. Based on five years of research, confidential documents, and extensive interviews with current and former Scientologists, this is an utterly compelling work of nonfiction and the defining work on an elusive faith.

“A meticulously researched history and revealing exposé, a frightening portrait of a religion that many find not just controversial, but dangerous.” — Boston Globe

“This book is fearless.” — Wall Street Journal

A New York Times Notable Book

Amazon.com Best Books of 2011, Nonfiction

San Francisco Chronicle Top Ten of 2011

Synopsis:

A revelatory, page-turning investigation that pulls back the curtain on life inside Scientology

Inside Scientology is an engrossing, groundbreaking work that brings a welcome sense of fair-mindedness to a subject that is, for many journalists and scholars, too hot to touch. Reitman has accomplished the miracle of adding light without heat.”—Lawrence Wright, author of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11

Inside Scientology goes beyond the celebrities and the scandals—though they’re here in all their absurdity and horror—to find in Scientology a more profound story about ‘technology’ as an article of faith and faith as a vessel for science, or, at least, science fiction. With precision and empathy, Janet Reitman has in this definitive investigation laid bare the genesis and possibly the endgame of America’s strangest religion.”—Jeff Sharlet, author of The Family and C Street

Video

About the Author

JANET REITMAN is a contributing editor at Rolling Stone. Her work has appeared in GQ, Men's Journal, the Los Angeles Times Sunday Magazine, and the Washington Post, among other publications. She holds a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University, and was a finalist for a National Magazine Award in 2007 for the story "Inside Scientology."

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 5 comments:

Cedate Shultz, August 3, 2012 (view all comments by Cedate Shultz)
A fascinating look into a much debated and highly controversial religion, Inside Scientology is both engrossing and eye-opening. Beginning with the early history of founder L. Ron Hubbard and following the organization/church through present day, we are given insight into this religion of the stars. Perhaps you could call it an audit of the church itself. Both well-written and painstakingly researched, this book is a must read!
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
Holly Scudero, July 4, 2012 (view all comments by Holly Scudero)
Everybody who knows anything about Scientology is bound to have an opinion about it. To some, it's a religion dedicated to self-betterment, and the golden path to recognizing one's true potential. To others, it's a wacky pseudo-scientific brainwashing cult created by a hack science-fiction writer looking to get rich. The truth, explains journalist Janet Reitman, is that Scientology is different things to different people. In her extensive new work, "Inside Scientology," Reitman explores different aspects of the controversial practice, delving into the lives of both its founder, L. Ron Hubbard, and it's current leader, David Miscavige; its evolution from the self-help program Dianetics to a government-recognized and tax-exempt religion; its reputation as a mecca for big-name celebrities; and numerous personal interviews with former and current Scientologists, both disillusioned and devout. One of the best parts of this book is how everything is presented completely dispassionately and unbiased. The interviews provide a surprisingly balanced insider's view, and important events are chronicled with intense precision. Here readers will find only painstakingly researched facts. Reitman's writing is clear and logically-packaged; the resulting book is a breath of fresh air on the normally polarizing topic of Scientology.

Originally published for San Francisco/Sacramento Book Reviews.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
eureka, January 19, 2012 (view all comments by eureka)
Fascinating look into the "house" that L. Ron Hubbard created. A compelling page turner!
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
View all 5 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780618883028
Subtitle:
s Most Secretive Religion
Author:
Reitman, Janet
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Subject:
Cults, Demonism, the Occult
Subject:
Cults
Subject:
History
Subject:
Religious
Subject:
Metaphysics-General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20110705
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
464
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 9.99 lb

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Related Subjects


Biography » Religious
Featured Titles » General
Featured Titles » Spirituality and Wellness
Metaphysics » General
Religion » Christianity » General
Religion » Comparative Religion » General
Religion » World Religions » Controversial Literature

Inside Scientology: The Story of America's Most Secretive Religion Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$16.50 In Stock
Product details 464 pages Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) - English 9780618883028 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Anyone who missed the recent investigative accounts of the Church of Scientology will benefit from this exhaustive history of the controversial sect. A contributing editor at Rolling Stone, Reitman has expanded on her 13,000-word story on Scientology, which ran in 2006, to produce a detailed and readable examination of the life of L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of the church, and his successor, David Miscavige. The book is rife with astonishing accounts of the abuses of power, the purges, and the climate of fear and intimidation commonplace in the top ranks of the organization. What's lacking is a thoughtful analysis of what Scientology represents within the broader 21st-century culture, and why people fall prey to its ideas. Reitman plows through her abundant material without an organizing narrative arc; consequently, many of the chapters pile on without providing satisfying conclusions. The only hopeful conclusion Reitman offers — and most readers will agree — is that Scientology is shrinking, with less than 250,000 members worldwide. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Review A Day" by , "You've got to hand it to L. Ron Hubbard. He might have been relegated to the minor ranks of science fiction writers except that he figured out that spiritual seekers in post-nuclear America craved a personal understanding of the self and the universe — and they would gladly pay for that knowledge again and again and again and again ...

Which is the delightful foundation of Janet Reitman's compelling, rich and courageous explanation of Hubbard's contribution to the 20th century, the religion called Scientology, now in its sixth decade. Yes, there are third-generation Scientologists." (Read the entire Oregonian review)
"Synopsis" by , The first book to tell the full story of the most secretive religion in America
"Synopsis" by , How is it that America's most popular new religion is still its least understood? Janet Reitman sheds some long-awaited light on the ever-elusive faith organization, the Church of Scientology. Based on five years of research, access to confidential documents, and extensive interviews with current and former Scientologists, this is the first objective modern history of the notoriously secretive faith.
"Synopsis" by ,
“A masterful piece of reporting . . . Reitman tells a spellbinding story of a larger-than-life personality whose quirks, ticks and charisma shaped Americas newest homegrown religious movement.” — Washington Post

Scientology is known for its celebrity believers and its team of “volunteer ministers” at disaster sites such as the World Trade Center; its notably aggressive response to criticism or its attacks on psychiatry; its requirement that believers pay as much as hundreds of thousands of dollars to reach the highest levels of salvation. But for all its notoriety, Scientology has remained Americas least understood new religion, even as it has been one of its most successful.

Now Janet Reitman tells its riveting full story in the first objective modern history of Scientology, at last revealing the astonishing truth about life within the controversial religion for its members and ex-members. Based on five years of research, confidential documents, and extensive interviews with current and former Scientologists, this is an utterly compelling work of nonfiction and the defining work on an elusive faith.

“A meticulously researched history and revealing exposé, a frightening portrait of a religion that many find not just controversial, but dangerous.” — Boston Globe

“This book is fearless.” — Wall Street Journal

A New York Times Notable Book

Amazon.com Best Books of 2011, Nonfiction

San Francisco Chronicle Top Ten of 2011

"Synopsis" by ,
A revelatory, page-turning investigation that pulls back the curtain on life inside Scientology

Inside Scientology is an engrossing, groundbreaking work that brings a welcome sense of fair-mindedness to a subject that is, for many journalists and scholars, too hot to touch. Reitman has accomplished the miracle of adding light without heat.”—Lawrence Wright, author of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11

Inside Scientology goes beyond the celebrities and the scandals—though they’re here in all their absurdity and horror—to find in Scientology a more profound story about ‘technology’ as an article of faith and faith as a vessel for science, or, at least, science fiction. With precision and empathy, Janet Reitman has in this definitive investigation laid bare the genesis and possibly the endgame of America’s strangest religion.”—Jeff Sharlet, author of The Family and C Street

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