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Inside Scientology: The Story of America's Most Secretive Religion Hardcover – July 5, 2011
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"The most complete picture of Scientology so far." –Garry Wills, New York Times Book Review"Reitman's book delivers all it promises, and it promises a lot… [Reitman] has put together the most masterfully written, narratively rewarding, and thorough yarn about L. Ron Hubbard, David Miscavige, and Scientology and its strange past, present, and possible future….In Inside Scientology, we have a thorough, brave journalist backed by a major publisher, and soon what no doubt will be a major publicity push: Reitman's book should soon become Scientology's biggest headache in years." - Village Voice"This book is fearless" - Wall Street Journal"[A] meaty, engaging new book" -Slate.com"[A] meticulously researched history and revealing exposé, a frightening portrait of a religion that many find not just controversial, but dangerous…Throughout the book, the author displays consummate journalistic skills. Her accumulation of evidence is particularly impressive and gives rise to one of the more memorable works of investigative nonfiction in recent years."- Boston Globe
"A well-researched and compelling read" - Los Angeles Times"[A] richly narrative history of the organization… The book is convincing and compelling. It will be interesting to see how the Scientology leadership responds." - St Louis Post Dispatch"So most journalistic accounts of Scientology fall into two categories: ax-grinding expose or fawning apologism. Fortunately Janet Reitman finds a third way in her authoritative, absorbing "Inside Scientology": nuanced reporting that lets the facts speak for themselves..."Inside Scientology" will remain a thoughtful, fair-minded record of its tumultuous first generation." - San Francisco Chronicle"Inside Scientology is a masterful piece of reporting....a compelling introduction to "America’s most secretive religion," as the subtitle has it. Even for those who have no interest in parsing when cults become religions or why faith upends fact, Reitman tells a spellbinding story of a larger-than-life personality whose quirks, ticks and charisma shaped America’s newest homegrown religious movement." - Washington Post"INSIDE SCIENTOLOGY is notable for its depth and sweep. Reitman's research pays off not only in rich portrayals of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard and current leader David Miscavige, but in intimate portraits of people who have been swept up along the way….Reitman's analysis of Scientology's ability to survive scandal and mockery is compelling and persuasive." - Seattle Times"The inside scoop on Scientology, the steeped-in-secrecy religion of L. Ron Hubbard." - Minneapolis Star Tribune"Inside Scientology leaves no scandal unturned in the life of L. Ron Hubbard, underlings, celebrities and cult "slaves" in this story of America's most secretive religion....It is a riveting read not only for its thorough research, and winning style, but because [Reitman] has left no greed undescribed in the 396 page-turner." - Seattle Post Intelligencer"Inside Scientology" by Janet Reitman is an amazing book...a masterful telling of the church’s history and the division among its members" - Asbury Park Press"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, too -- 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 courage, empathy, and clarity -- if that word can be reclaimed from L. Ron Hubbard -- Janet Reitman has with this definitive investigation laid bare the genesis and possibly the endgame of America's strangest religion".--Jeff Sharlet, bestselling author of The Family and C Street
"Thoroughly engrossing page-turner on the shape-shifting Church of Scientology...A bizarre and complicated history told with masterful control." -Kirkus Reviews starred
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Top Customer Reviews
I heartedly whipped through this informative book and I highly recommend for general readers,as well as current and former members.
The most important thing I came away with after reading it was that this well researched and written book is an must read for anyone wanting to know why Scientology is so controversial.
The subject and history of Scientology and it's leaders current and past, is such that it would fill volumes. So, I think Janet Reitman accomplished, in good part, what she set out to do with this book:
"It has been my goal to write the first objective modern history of the Church of Scientology," Reitman proclaims in her introduction. "It is the goal of Inside Scientology to translate [L. Ron Hubbard's arcane] language and separate myth from fact."
What to include must have been a real dilemma. As a former member, I just wish there had been more. But for the outsider wanting to know the inside story of the secretive religion called Scientology, they will come away very informed and quite surprised. It does not provide all that there is to know but she provides the essential information and gives the reader enough so that they will have an historical understanding. She compliments earlier works and provides such that one will want to read up on previous works if they have not read them already.
She really did her homework. Hence the large Notes Section and 'Selected Bibliography at the end of the book.Read more ›
The story of Lisa will tear your heart out. But it will also show you an example, if an extreme one, of an organization based on lies, taking advantage of others and itself being highly dangerous.
Lisa died receiving what organized scientology called "The Introspection Rundown".
In the book Janet Reitman tells of scientology's founder L Ron Hubbard announcing this rundown as a cure for the last unsolvable mental condition "the psychotic break". As quoted from Hubbard in Janet's book: "'I have made a technical breakthrough which possibly ranks with the major discoveries of the Twentieth Century,' he proclaimed in a bulletin dated November 24, 1973. 'THIS MEANS THE LAST REASON TO HAVE PSYCHIATRY AROUND IS GONE'."
Who is Hubbard to make such a "breakthrough"? The point is not whether the introspection rundown should have been two days or seventeen days as is argued by true believers in Hubbard's "technology". The point is this "tech" was written by a man with zero credentials in the field of mental health, who was an academic fraud, who abused people on a wholesale basis and who ripped off many millions from the proceeds of scientology while countless staff were cash starved and countless public were financially ruined.
In every way organized scientology destroyed a beautiful, young woman and took advantage of her for her money. It was completely incompetent without a technology to truly help others. And then it covers up what in my opinion is serious crime knowingly and willingly so that justice even to this day will never be done.Read more ›
Janet Reitman has accomplished this exhausting and trying feat not reading like a dry history book, but a drama/scifi/mystery. I could not put it down until finished. There were many details I didn't know. More important to me personally was even after all this time I was able to piece together various plans and schemes that never made sense until Janet laid it all out.
I hope your steadfast labor, Ms Reitman, finds the tremendous success and widespread distribution it deserves. I firmly believe this will be The Book on the Real Scientology that will be referenced more than any other. I just finished it and am a bit awestruck. I certainly hope politicians, lobbyists, social groups, humanitarian groups and others will read this book and educate themselves fully, as well as parents, and teens, young adults.
The one group that needs to read it the most are Scientologists. In reality, they will be the last. Sincere thanks. Oh, there are juicy details in each chapter that make it a Must Read for almost anyone. When it comes to Scientology bizarre elements, you just can't make this stuff up. Hope to see you interviwed by Steven Colbert in the very near future!
More thoughts after a second read:
It is impossible for any one book to cover All of sci history from All angles. It would take a series, a long one.
There's a very important factor that sometimes gets missed so I'll repeat it. Janet Reitman discusses her sources and research in great depth.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a fabulous book....amazing information. I knew nothing about Scientology and this book really tells ALL. Well written, a page turner, kept my interest.Published 1 month ago by Happy in Maryland
The thing I liked the most was how many sources she had from all levels in the organization. Sometimes it goes into a little more detail that I would like but overall it was very... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Seanreviews
Many love to write long reviews. I don't want to spoil too much about this fine research book. I wanted to read this objective book to learn about Scientology. Read morePublished 3 months ago by PaulD
I've read a number of books on Scientology, and this one so far is the best. Not too judgemental, and just the right amount of "gotchas" so you stay interested in the... Read morePublished 3 months ago by average consumer
"Inside Scientology" is very well researched and gives views from both sides of the electric fence (although it is very difficult to make it balanced since this religion is... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Janaka Stagnaro
OK - admittedly it's not fair to critique a non-fiction history for being too long or detailed.
I think my appetite for the topic would be for a briefer version. Read more
Purchased back in 2012 and just purchased for a Christmas gift. Good read !Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
Wow - this was a real eye opener for me. It really was a good book that explained a lot about what Scientology is! The shipping was fast and the seller was great!Published 5 months ago by Steeler Sue