- Paperback: 262 pages
- Publisher: Feral House (September 1, 1992)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780922915125
- ISBN-13: 978-0922915125
- ASIN: 0922915121
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 40 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,291,575 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Secret Life of a Satanist: The Authorized Biography of Anton LaVey Paperback – September 1, 1992
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For the life described in these pages, this is a very short read. The picture that is painted of LaVey's life seems almost to just skim the surface at times - a necessary move in biographies, I grant - but the reader is never left without the hint that there was something more going on. For those of us who go in with a more-than-superficial understanding of Satanism, the picture is vivid, and the hints suggest certain directions much more than others. If this is the reader's first glimpse into the world of Anton LaVey, misinterpretation probably isn't very difficult.
Magic plays a significant role in LaVey's life, especially as life progresses. My guess is that the ordinary reader will take from this that LaVey had deluded himself, despite espousing that his philosophy was rational, into thinking he had tapped into some occult brand of fairy-tale wizardry, as has been done by many of his detractors. Readers who have a grasp on the Satanic philosophical religion will have a much easier time reading between the lines, and see the writing for what it is: author Blanche Barton's way of giving a wink and a nod to LaVey's principle that a certain amount of evocative fantasy (willingly and knowingly entered into) can bend situations or events in just the right direction. What can I say? I was riveted, so it worked.
LaVey's life, as reported here, was large, looming, and in the shadows. Because I am a Satanist myself, I often hear that he tapped into a "dark force" in nature. I agree: he unleashed the right kinds of ideas at the right time to further all of his goals, and I will always be grateful to him for his having done so. This is nothing, if not a clarion call for the reader to do more with his/her life.