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Under The Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith Paperback – Unabridged, August 6, 2004
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Remarkable . . . for anyone interested in the wilder frontiers of spiritual conviction, this book is a must. * Independent * Excellent . . . a lucid, judicious, even sympathetic account not just of Mormon Fundamentalism but of the seductive power of fanaticism in general. * Daily Telegraph * A provocative look at the twisted roots of American fundamentalism. -- Will Self * Evening Standard Books of the Year *
About the Author
Jon Krakauer is a mountaineer and the author of Eiger Dreams, Into the Wild, (which was on the New York Times bestseller list for over a year and was made into a film starring Emile Hirsch and Kristen Stewart) Into Thin Air, Iceland, Under the Banner of Heaven and Where Men Win Glory. He is also the editor of the Modern Library Exploration series.
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Given the recent occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Preserve by the Bundys, this book gives great insight into their thinking - you can really see how their extreme view of Mormonism has shaped their actions today.
He examines not only the events leading up to the murders of Brenda Lafferty and her daughter, but he also looks at the core beliefs the Lafferty brothers had which led to the slaughter of their own family members: personal revelation, blood atonement, and faith in religious fundamentalism.
This book has some disturbing things in it, so I wouldn't recommend it to the faint of heart. Nor would I recommend it to those who fear questioning the underpinnings of Mormonism. But for anyone who truly wants to hold history and doctrine under a microscope in order to determine what it's made of, this is a fascinating read. It really made me think.