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
Yes, I found this book to be very interesting. The bizarreness that is Scientology can almost be read as a non fiction drama. Which you may assume it was if you had never heard of Scientology. Narration was great and the book kind of played out like a girls diary. The things she saw and her feelings towards those things. Some may think it is a way to poorly write a novel, but I found it to be the most effective way.
Jenna. She got her self into all the trouble that in turn showed us what a dysfunctional group this is.
The whole thing. From the Ranch to the Sea ORG. Fascinating read.
Yes. It was fascinating, if you have never read anything about Scientology this is a great book to start on. I'm always interested in things I don't either know about or do not understand. This exposes a lot of those questions.
This book is a childlike, innocent retelling of what happened to JMH as a child growing up within the confines of Scientology. The treatment of her was harsh, and simply wrong. I cannot conceive of how parents and adults in general could allow it. She has my utmost sympathy, and I'm happy for her that she now has a better life.
However, in the interests of giving an honest book review, I cannot rate this book highly. I understand that she was unable to gain much of an education, and one cannot blame her for that. But as a reader, I would've gained far more from the book if instead of merely recounting separate episodes and isolated events, there had been some analysis of these events, with hindsight, and insight into the basic tenets of Scientology. What was or is her view of these? How does she interpret the events of her life as a reflection of these beliefs?
Why, in her opinion, were things as they were? How do her parents feel now, about having subjected her to this?
I understand that she was brainwashed, but is that the only reason she did not
leave sooner when she had both the opportunity and her parents' support? Since her life to that point had been so bad, surely the painful reality of the past years would have overcome the brainwashing? I don't know.
I find the sequence of events, unsupported by any insightful discussion, too simplistic, childish and incohesive. After all, the book is entitled "Beyond Belief". What is the belief-structure of Scientology, and what caused these events to stretch the beliefs beyond their limits? A fuller account would have made a far better book, in my opinion. Or is the "Belief" being referred to as the reader's unwillingness or incapacity to understand?
I'm sorry, but for the above reasons I regret having wasted a credit on this book. I think that being "nice" needs to take a back seat when evaluating a book purely on its merits.
I, like many others, am fascinated, horrified, and angry about the Scientology cult created by a very mentally ill psychopath. It's a shame this powerful and extremely harmful "religion" is still around destroying so many lives.
Jenna Hill should be proud of playing her role in helping to expose this garbage organization.
great all the way through but i couldnt put it down during the second half. I read Ron Miscaviges book Ruthless too. Both were great. Though this one had me choked up at times seeing the abuse sociopaths such as Dave and LRH can have on people. Encouraged to see this and other such information being demonstration of what happens when you violate social contracts.
Interested in True Crime mostly, however, I have been known to vary with other true stories (i.e. Hellhound) & an occasional fiction piece
This was interesting and informative. It is not my usual choice but it definitely kept me interested. I hope to find more books written with this style.
I had no listened to any others but I will certainly consider more of her work.
I would recommend this book to anyone that would like more information into Scientology. I had no interest but now I feel more informed.
The story is a little over-drawn at times but it certainly leaves the reader with a detailed understanding of the inner workings of this organisation- its corruption and cruelty
Not knowing anything about scientology or of the story of Jenna Miscaviage, I had no idea the depth this book would have. I'm glad I gave this well rated book a chance and am no longer ignorant about the people who believe in this so called religion. I have such a respect now for the people who manage to pull themselves out of the churches grip!
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