Audie Award Finalist, Non-Fiction, 2014
Jenna Miscavige Hill, niece of Church of Scientology leader David Miscavige, was raised as a Scientologist but left the controversial religion in 2005. In Beyond Belief, she shares her true story of life inside the upper ranks of the sect, details her experiences as a member Sea Org - the church's highest ministry - speaks of her "disconnection" from family outside of the organization, and tells the story of her ultimate escape.
In this tell-all memoir, Jenna Miscavige Hill, a prominent critic of Scientology who now helps others leave the organization, offers an insider's profile of the beliefs, rituals, and secrets of the religion that has captured the fascination of millions, including some of Hollywood's brightest stars such as Tom Cruise and John Travolta.
©2013 Jenna Miscavige Hill (P)2013 HarperCollinsPublishers
The story was very interesting and I think it imparted a lot of information about the day-do-day life of those who are wrapped up in this thing. However, I agree with other reviewers in that we never really get the basic premise of the religion explained....so there are some questions. This was still an interesting listen.
No. but she had a slight lisp which was kind of distracting.
The author really personalizes her journey. I can feel the sadness, but never wavering promise of hope in her words. It's not a book that will help you understand Scientology as much as others like "Going Clear" will. However it will make the walls (both physical & mental) that surround the mysterious religion seem so overbearing and intimidating that by the end of the book you are literally cheering her on as she breaks free.
I see this book as more of a love story than anything else. I don't want to spoil it.
Sandy's read is filled with such passion, I originally thought the book was read by the author.
Jenna's ultimate escape is truly captivating. You will literally not be able to stop listening during the last third of the book.
It's so lame to say this... but this would make a great movie.
The truth about her experience is an odd story.
When she realized she had outgrown Scientology.
Great Biography !
An eye-opening and amazing book. Jenna is obviously a very intelligent woman, and a great writer. I'm glad she was able to escape Scientology with enough time to live and appreciate the one life we all have.
I am an Australian woman who enjoys reading many different styles of books, from history to sci fi and mystery to poetry.
An interesting story. A sad life no doubt. Scientology really is a creepy organisation. No surprises here though.
I don't re-read or re-listen to books, but if I had to...it would be this one.
Not a moment, but overall the story is written so fluidly and believable.
Jenna - I like her spunk.
I was moved to anger many times just learning how people are treated.
Beautifully written and narrated.
The picture of children, in California carrying rail road sidings and breaking rocks and adults watching on, telling them to run not walk--- an upsidown world.
Sadness, shock, anger-- why has it taken so long for someone to do something about this? Jenna you are a heroine.
I hope the Government agencies in the USA have to read this as compusary text. A real problem , happening today that they can solve. Shut them down now before they have another Jonestown on their hands. Also-- this would make a great movie.
Fine as is as far as I can understand the experiences detailed
Sandy was ok but wasn't into the content
unbelief that people can be so controlled mentally.
This book is geared to a certain audience. People that have been under the influence of mind control organizations need to read this.
...occasionally broadens her horizons, but generally just wants to be entertained...
I heard this book while reading "Escape from Camp 14" by a North Korean Labour Camp escapee. I was shocked again and again at the number of comparisons - the forced labour, the requirement to tattle, the regimented daily procedures.
The level of brainwashing is horrifying - according to Ms. Miscavige Hill there is constant fear of being unworthy and even more constant fear to be better and to be successful and to rise in an organization where this seems impossible. She was actually in a relatively "high" position/organization within Scientology, but even for her there were so many secrets that it seems impossible that anyone could ever rise all the way or even want to.
The narration was okay, the text was occasionally very simple. The story itself was more interesting for the shock effect than for the literary quality and I listened out of fascination that something so abhorrent could be so captivating to the brainwashed.
The first person narrative of someone growing up in the church was captivating. I wanted to see how and why she decided to leave what she was raised to believe in.
This completely answers the question about whether it's a cult. All the signs are there. Of course, that also makes it difficult to distinguish from any other religion! Enlightening description of her experiences and what makes someone begin to question the things they've been told all their lives.
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