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Inside Scientology: The Story of America's Most Secretive Religion Paperback – 6 Aug 2013


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Product details

  • Paperback: 444 pages
  • Publisher: Mariner Books; Reprint edition (6 Aug 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0547750358
  • ISBN-13: 978-0547750354
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 14 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 154,574 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Inside Scientology 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 fai Full description

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Jens Tingleff on 28 July 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
When I finished reading "Inside scientology" it took a bit of
reflection before I arrived at my view so far: that this book is
either borderline apologetic (in the guise of not being biased) or at
the very cutting edge of distinguishing between the actions of one
group of followers (the members in good standing of the scientology
organisation) and all the others ("independent scientologists"). The
harmfulness of scientology the subject is obviously controversial. In
Germany, all scientology followers, organised or independents, are
restricted by law from taking government jobs. In California,
"ministerial exception" causes lawsuits against the organisation to
stop in the courts.

First, what I did not like. The word "cult." It is not used much in
this book, indeed it does not appear in the index. The Jim Jones
peoples temple is described as a cult, but there is no reflection on
what made the peoples temple different from the scientology sea
org. One big difference is, of course, that Jim Jones cannot sue
anyone. One book from only a few years ago about a multinational
organisation was never published in the UK - it is rumoured to be the
target of a "super injunction."

Also, while the description of the death of Lisa McPherson is
certainly admirably free of "bias" I wondered why this is the only
harrowing case that was described in such detail. This is - sadly -
far from the only court case from which one can quote devastating
details.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By fluffy on 15 Dec 2012
Format: Hardcover
If you're interested in Scientology, this provides an in-depth and fascinating insight. The author originally wrote a piece on Scientology for Rolling Stone magazine and developed it into this book. It covers the early days of its founder, L. Ron Hubbard, through to the current `Chairman of the Board', David Miscavige and everything in-between from tax evasion, criminality and its disturbing methods of keeping followers under control, through to its dubious reliance on Tom Cruise.

The book benefits from being more impartial than others that are written by ex-insiders with an axe to grind. She has clearly taken a lot of trouble over five years of research to give an objective view of Scientology, which must have been quite a challenge, given how secretive the organisation is and their dubious record for silencing those who publish negative coverage. I imagine one of the challenges of writing this book is not so much what to put in but what to leave out, as there's so much that is controversial, nuts and just plain wrong about Scientology. But I think she gets the balance right and I admire the clear-eyed take on what is a very slippery subject, along with the way she plays it straight, even though it's easy to ridicule the teachings of L. Ron Hubbard. I don't usually read non-fiction but found this very engrossing, mainly because (let's face it) Scientology is crazy bats**t.
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By Jimmy Jimmy on 7 Nov 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Fascinating, informative and juicy.

Old Ron Howard was actually onto something originally with Dianetics, or am I getting mixed up with that bloke out of Happy Days? Anyway, whatever... because I enjoyed the book so much I went and joined... however I still haven't met Tom Cruise, Ralph Malph or Pottsey
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