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The Fastest Growing Religion on Earth: How Genealogy Captured the Brains and Imaginations of Americans [Kindle Edition]

Doug Bremner
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Book Description

For millions of Americans, the quest to find one’s ancestors has become an obsession, and for some even a religion. After writing a book about the history of his family, the author realized that half of it was missing, literally. This is the story about how he found the other half, and what he learned along the way about the history and practice of genealogy, his fellow genealogy fanatics, and himself.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Physician, professor, researcher, writer and filmmaker from Atlanta, Georgia.

Product Details

  • File Size: 547 KB
  • Print Length: 184 pages
  • Publisher: Laughing Cow Books; 1 edition (April 11, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,116,019 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Love it May 3, 2013
I received a copy courtesy of Doug Bremner.

The title itself has depth in it. People may associate the term "religion" with god; Doug associates it with genealogy. It has become America's number one hobby these past few years. For some people, the hobby has grown into an obsession or even a religion.

For a book that talks about Bremner's research and family history, I learned a lot. There are brief history lessons on places like the Salt Lake City's granite mountain. There are many other ways to research your family besides Ancestry Tree website- there's of course other websites, communication through letters, contacting offices for documents, etc.

I made some text-to-self connect many times. Bremner didn't know anything about his mother's side because she was adopted. I can relate to this because my mother came to America from Vietnamese and boyyyyy they rarely have any type of documents there.It blows my mind how far Bremner goes out of his way to get information of his ancestors. People may think that he has some serious issue spending all his time and effort for something little.

This is why people are so interested in Geneology. A small fact or myth on where the ancestor worked or how they came to America means so much. You can learn about that person's life and the historical events that occurred in their lifetime.

Lovely book
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Curiously Riveting - hard to put down! May 9, 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Another fascinating adventure by this author with great attention to detail, a unique sense of humor and a compelling way of writing about both himself and his topic. I am not a student of genealogy and haven't yet wandered to "" or similar sites but I know many people involved in this hobby/addiction. If I was such a student, I would have been even more intrigued by this book (and I was still intrigued anyway), especially by the many passages containing the author's email exchanges & telephone conversations with strangers, some turning out to be distance cousins. There are also family trees going back in history for 100s of years and plenty of genealogy reference materials provided with their internet addresses. I finished this book in a couple days and thoroughly enjoyed it. There are a few very minor typos but I'll pass those on via email. This book is unbelievably impressive and shines a light on a mostly hidden past time. I especially appreciated the keen insight into the desire and need to keep looking for answers in the past about missing chunks of family, how and why a person becomes an adoptive child, how others are impacted and, separate from whether two people have actual "family" connections, how their stories still matter.

Read this book. If you are interested in or, even better, already involved in genealogy, read this book NOW! If you have any connections to Washington State, Spokane, Olympia, Reardon, Four Lakes or points in between you are also bound to like the local flavor the author's journey includes. This is a story of the search for meaning in public records of all kinds: birth, death, adoption, census, obituaries, cemetery markers, etc. leading to connections with real people and, ultimately, real family members.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition
First off I would like to thank Momma Says Read for providing the giveaway in which I won this. Second, Thanks to the author for offering his book as a prize.

When I first got this book I was actually excited, hoping to learn more about genealogy. What I got was mostly a personal account of the authors personal history. While there were some interesting bits even in that, it was not what I was hoping for.

Overall, the book is as vague as the summary. It touches a bit on how genealogy is so popular and obsessive by some, it compares to and seems cultish and religious. The book starts off about how Mormons collect records of birth, marriage, death, etc of every person they can. Then goes into mentioning his own experience a bit mentioning some sites he used. Then back to Mormons, then we jump into his personal conquest of his lineage. All in the same chapter! I would have felt much more at ease with it if the book was done differently. Maybe broken up the book, the first chapter or 2 about genealogy in general. The next several chapters can be his own experience then give websites, experts etc. It is so heavily mixed. One minute I feel like I am reading a memoir, the next a few paragraphs of an index. His experience isn't covered in order either. IT seems to work in flashbacks at times.

So ultimately, very badly organized. It would have been better to either write this as a memoir or break it up into sections. Too much crossing over for me.

If you want to read about the authors family history read this book. If you are looking to learn about genealogy and how to learn your own, this isn't very helpful.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you're addicted to Genealogy -- read this June 30, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book spells out the whole picture about Genealogy.
I frankly am bored with it and the author covers every aspect including the addiction.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Fastest Growing September 3, 2013
By tmtrvlr
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The title is a little misleading as this book is not about religion, but more about a growing obsession and passion for genealogy. I have spent about twelve years researching my genealogy, but I have always found that it is difficult to be interested in someone else's history. Fortunately, Douglas Bremner is an excellent writer, and he has the ability to draw the reader into his story.

I found it a little difficult to follow at times, but then I find it hard to follow my research when it gets a few generations back. This is not a recitation of names and places, but a real story of the history of this family and the struggle in finding information about a broken family. I enjoyed reading about his method of finding and connecting with people for whom he hoped would hold the key to his story.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Disorganized, odd memoir about the author's family history trail
I wish this had been better. It included so much tangential detail (told through lengthy email exchanges) about his process of discovery, I lost interest. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Snaildarter
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Treatise on the Rise of Genealogy
With the use of his own unusual family history Doug Bremer's anecdotes emaphasize the rsie of genealogy as, not only a hobby, but as a path of self-discovery and place in the... Read more
Published 19 months ago by CDM
1.0 out of 5 stars Poorly written Book VERY HARD TO FOLLOW
First off don't think this book has anything to do with religion. It doesn't. The author seems to think that he can appeal to religious zealots or something via the misleading... Read more
Published 21 months ago by Parsons 210
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful read!
I absolutely adored this book. I couldn't put it down until I'd finished reading the Bremner adventure! Read more
Published 21 months ago by Nicole Hernandez
3.0 out of 5 stars I was intrigued then lost interest
Bremner makes a good point early on then reiterates it over and over and over again - just like I did here. The premise is interesting but probably not deserving of a book.
Published 23 months ago by Larry J. Frieders
3.0 out of 5 stars Offers opportunity to learn how genealogical research is done
First of all, a thank-you is in order to the author for sending me a free copy of this book and to the Goodreads Making Connections group for serving as the link between authors... Read more
Published 23 months ago by Okiegirl
3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not what I expected....
I was given this book by Mr. Bremner in order to review it.

Based on the title of the book, I had thought it would be more about the history and/or process of genealogy... Read more
Published 23 months ago by tnestler
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
Dr. Bremner once again does a fantastic job. Incredibly in depth and yet easy to read. Can't wait until the next book!
Published on May 14, 2013 by Aram N. Sohigian
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More About the Author

J Douglas Bremner, M.D, is a Professor of Psychiatry and Radiology in Atlanta, GA. He is a researcher, physician, blogger, and writer. He has authored nonfiction books on a range of topics from drug safety to mental health and genealogy, as well memoir and satire. He also writes screenplays, and recently wrote, produced and directed the feature comedy film "Inheritance, Italian Style."

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