I am very glad I bought this, sure gives you an insight into Scientology which I think the general population has no idea of. It is very different for those that are "public" Scientologiests like the celebrities - although celebrities are treated VERY special, and then it is like a cult for those that live within in it.
12 step program please. I am addicted to Audible! I love trashy sexy books, award winning novels and everything between. Bring it!
I think this story is compelling either way but I did really appreciate Sandy Rustin's narration. She has a very young childlike voice and it was perfect for hearing Jenna's story.
This book was so captivating. Jenna takes you inside the cult that is Scientology and shares so much more than I knew about the church. I've always been curious and have read a few other books on the topic but have never heard it from a child's perspective. It was truly heart breaking. There are so many bizarro rules and downright unethical moments that she and others like her had (and have) to endure that I was left speechless. What Scientology puts children and families through is no less than traumatic and abusive. This is a must listen - it is really disturbing and absolutely engrossing.
Based on some of the other reviews I decided to take a chance on this book. Unfortunately, I am not on the same wavelength as many who raved about this book and found it very bland and uninteresting. Don't recommend.
This book showed how the instinctive human desire for love and fulfillment can eventually overcome and triumph over the most pernicious and psychotic brainwashing ever conceived by sociopathic morons.
The level of detail that Jenna remembered about her experiences. It made it all the more vivid and painful.
After listening to the painful chapters of systematic child abuse and exploitation at the hands of demented cult bullies it was so cathartic to hear Jenna in a perfect gesture of supreme definance take the phoney e-meter soup cans from her voyeuristic auditor and crush them under her foot.
When she was willing to sacrifice her life by jumping out the window unless the cult bullies produced her boyfriend, Dallas, whom they had imprisoned to brainwash and turn against her.
Listen to the dispassionate but no less shocking account of Scientology, Going Clear, by Lawrence Wright in addition to this book. This helps clarify some of the background shennanigans that were going on with David Miscaivage during and after LRH and the other cast of looneys that make up this sci-fi horror story. As Jenna points out you can't tell someone they are in a cult. They have to grasp it on their own.
Stories like this one ususally fascinate me and I was very excited to listen to Beyond Belief. Unfortuately, I just could not make it more than a third of the way through. While details are essential in a memoir like this, I found myself bored by extraneaous information and repetition that, to me, got in the way of the narrative moving forward. I was also distracted by the narraror. Perhaps intentionally cast as someone who captures qualities of a "little girl voice" I found her difficult to listen to. I usually don't give up on a book, but I just can't devote several more hours to this one.
Very informative. Everyone should read this book! We, as humans, tend to not question when something is labeled as a "religion". In reality we need to remember to ALWAYS question when something just doesn't feel right.
I can't possibly find the words to express how important I feel this book is for people to read. Not only is it a mind blowing expose of a very secretive, cult-like and powerful "church"...but it is a gripping personal story that kept me on the edge of my seat until the end. Just when I thought I'd heard everything, the author's story would get even more unbelievable. Jenna is to be commended for the strength and courage she has shown in writing this book. I am recommending it to all of my friends.
Jenna Miscavige Hill did a brilliant job of walking the uninitiated reader through the frightening and suppressive world of the Church of Scientology. Her detailed accounts and emotional memories brought the story vividly to life.
many, perhaps when she shredded the documents or when she tried to run away as a child
I really loved this book. The narrator helps it enormously with such a sweet and pleasant voice. There are many cults out there. Some of the things in this book did not seem extreme like one reads in prison camp memoirs, but to take a child and allow others to raise the child and to prevent the children from a normal life, this is wrong. If an adult wants to make the choice to join the Sea Org fine, but to put a child in there and teach them all this stuff, like the staring at each other, the meter, etc, maddening. I do bet Jenna was a little hell fire for them as the note from Scientology says, but it takes a little hell fire to stand up and go forward and tell of what happened to her. Sadly, she states that she no longer believes in any afterlife after all the mess she went through. I can understand why. But I do hope that she still seeks out the great mystery of being alive, the first cause so to speak. I did not know much about Scientology before reading this book. My eyes are open now and I do think so many actors like it because it is almost perfect for them, the training is really about controlling temperament and pain etc, sort of the thing they do for a living, while on camera. Last night I watched the movie The Master to get more of an insight into the founder, L Ron Hubbard. I don't think the movie really did that well, but it was a pretty good film. I do want to learn more about this man though. His ideas in fact do seem that they could convince people and are to some extent attractive, it makes us feel so important to know we have been around for a many years, and all we have to do is remember our past, and to know we will be around for a billion more. But it is amazing to me the love and adoration we all have for such people like Tom Cruise, with such ideas, when any traditional faith, a God and a Heaven etc or so derided. I am a believer in Christianity and see it as a full world view and this Scientology as the sort of latest schism of the separation of mind and body, it has always been a problem since the very beginning. St Augustine grappled with this for example. A great read after this one would be St Augustine's Confessions.
Lost in a good book
Some substance. I appreciated the descriptions of they ways of thinking and ways of doing things in the Scientology world but that's where the interest stopped. Throughout the entire book, Jenna began what sounded like it was going to be a huge story or atrocity of some sort just to fall lag into nothing. "I needed linens and I broke down in tears but then Donna got me some. Things weren't looking good and I didn't know where to go and then so so and showed me." Seriously, I was bored to death and felt like the majority of the book was full of useless and meaningless minute by minute accounts of her entire life.
No, most likely not.
She was so monotone. She had something very borning to perform and her delivery was borning.
The beginning, middle and the end.
Don't waste your money on this book. Can I get a refund?