We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access .
Under the Banner of Heaven Audiobook

Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith

Regular Price:$27.93
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Publisher's Summary

At the core of this book is an appalling double murder committed by two Mormon fundamentalist brothers, Ron and Dan Lafferty, who insist they received a revelation from God commanding them to kill their blameless victims. Beginning with a meticulously researched account of this "divinely inspired" crime, Krakauer constructs a multilayered, bone-chilling narrative of messianic delusion, savage violence, polygamy, and unyielding faith. Along the way, he uncovers a shadowy offshoot of America's fastest-growing religion, and raises provocative questions about the nature of religious belief.

Krakauer takes readers inside isolated communities in the American West, Canada, and Mexico, where some forty-thousand Mormon fundamentalists believe the mainstream Mormon Church went unforgivably astray when it renounced polygamy. Defying both civil authorities and the Mormon establishment in Salt Lake City, the leaders of these outlaw sects are zealots who answer only to God. Marrying prodigiously and with virtual impunity (the leader of the largest fundamentalist church took seventy-five "plural wives," several of whom were wed to him when they were fourteen or fifteen and he was in his eighties), fundamentalist prophets exercise absolute control over the lives of their followers, and preach that any day now the world will be swept clean in a hurricane of fire, sparing only their most obedient adherents.

Weaving the story of the Lafferty brothers and their fanatical brethren with a clear-eyed look at Mormonism's violent past, Krakauer examines the underbelly of the most successful homegrown faith in the United States, and finds a distinctly American brand of religious extremism. The result is vintage Krakauer, an utterly compelling work of nonfiction that illuminates an otherwise confounding realm of human behavior.

©2003 Jon Krakauer; (P)2003 Books on Tape, Inc., Published by arrangement with Random House Audio Publishing Group, a division of Random House, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Krakauer lays the portent on beautifully, building his tales carefully from the ground up until they irresistibly, spookily combust." (Kirkus Reviews)
"Krakauer presents details that indeed sound stranger than fiction." (The New York Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (3103 )
5 star
 (1507)
4 star
 (1031)
3 star
 (393)
2 star
 (91)
1 star
 (81)
Overall
4.3 (1936 )
5 star
 (1045)
4 star
 (570)
3 star
 (230)
2 star
 (59)
1 star
 (32)
Story
4.3 (1927 )
5 star
 (1019)
4 star
 (647)
3 star
 (189)
2 star
 (43)
1 star
 (29)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    maleeech Indio, CA, United States 08-24-12
    maleeech Indio, CA, United States 08-24-12 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    0
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "this book put me to sleep"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    some action


    What was most disappointing about Jon Krakauer’s story?

    all it talked about was religion and wives


    Would you be willing to try another one of Scott Brick’s performances?

    maybe


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    sleepiness


    Any additional comments?

    this should not be under "true crime"

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shoshana United States 08-14-12
    Shoshana United States 08-14-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Is religion a force for good or evil?"

    Intertwines the history of Mormonism with the story of a gruesome double murder of a young mother and her baby, with side trips to explore related crimes from the recent and more distant past. The author raises questions about whether such crimes are the result of madness, religion gone awry, or simply an extension of normal religious mentality. Reader Scott Brick does a great job holding the listener's attention with an intense and somewhat creepy reading style. The complexity of the interwoven stories makes the audio version a little difficult to follow at times.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tony Grant New Zealand 08-13-12
    Tony Grant New Zealand 08-13-12 Member Since 2012

    I love reading, but never get the time to sit and read. Audible has allowed me to read on the move, while I am driving, running and more.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    91
    15
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A fascinating walk thru the history of LDS church"
    What did you like best about Under the Banner of Heaven? What did you like least?

    It was a story that needs to be told, one the world barely knows.
    There was so much to take in that it was a struggle to keep track at times.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marion 07-23-12
    Marion 07-23-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    87
    34
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A must read for anyone"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Under the Banner of Heaven to be better than the print version?

    Not necessarily


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    The reader captured the emotions of the characters and intent of the author.


    What does Scott Brick bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    A strong sense of the author's voice.


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    That mixing religious dogma with government policy is very dangerous to say the least. That all religious fanaticism regardless of the particular faith is the antithesis of religious freedom. That any group of people in the United States that calls itself a "religion" seems to be able to operate tax free and avoid many of the laws of the land despite blatant disregard for individual and human rights. There are so many documented facts that are "interesting tidbits" that it is impossible to select just one.


    Any additional comments?

    I had no idea how much the information in this book would shock and impress me. I think it should be required reading in college and university basic courses in Western Civilization or related subject.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joseph 07-09-12
    Joseph 07-09-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    185
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    83
    56
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    18
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Challenging and Enlightening"

    Jon Krakauer took me on a roller-coaster ride with this compelling story of Mormons, Mormonism, religion-at-large and the US legal system. I found myself, at different points in this book, defending, hating and simply questioning the Mormons in the center of this true story. As the author points out, this is a modern religion, having been born in recent times with modern record keeping and the printing press. Jon leverages that to go into great detail regarding the birth of the religion, its tumultuous history and the abhorrent events of 1984.

    I saw many parallells between this modern religion and those that, perhaps only because of time, are considered orthodox.

    Scott Brick's narration proved mildly troublesome. The book is filled with interviews and direct quotes. I found that distinguishing between the voice of the narrator and the voices(s) of the main characters difficult at times.

    I grew up listening to the radio broadcast of The Mormon Tabernacle Choir on Sunday mornings and thought The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints was shrouded in mystery. Under the Banner of Heaven has lifted that shroud and challenged my own philosophies and beliefs.

    Wonderful.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brian Austin, TX, United States 07-05-12
    Brian Austin, TX, United States 07-05-12 Listener Since 2005
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Flat out excellent and engrossing"

    Well researched, with quotations taken from all kinds of source material. However, it reads like a novel. The book isn't just about the murders, nor Mormonism, but religion as a whole. If you're not thinking by the end, you just don't think.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ronda 04-30-12
    Ronda 04-30-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    43
    13
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fascinating look into history of polygamy"
    Would you listen to Under the Banner of Heaven again? Why?

    Absolutely.


    What did you like best about this story?

    That it was a true story, well written, and very detailed information about how these brothers became to be murderers.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steve INDIO, CA, United States 04-26-12
    Steve INDIO, CA, United States 04-26-12 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    19
    13
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Interesting but overall oddly organized"

    I understand that including this much information in a book must be incredibly difficult, but this book just jumped around so much with the information presented. It also probably had too much information which wasn't entirely relevant to the main case that Krakauer was presenting.

    That being said, it's still a good read and I enjoyed it. I just thought I'd enjoy it more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    stephan Fairport, NY, United States 03-19-12
    stephan Fairport, NY, United States 03-19-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    0
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Eye Opening"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Under the Banner of Heaven to be better than the print version?

    I didn't read the printed edition. This audio edition was excellent


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The scene at The Mountain Meadows Massacre when the men of the wagon train have thrown down their guns, are being lead off and on a signal they are all shot in cold blood. All in the name of God. All the perpetrators are sworn to secrecy or they will be be murdered.


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    The inherent violence, the duplicity, and the willingness to do harm to anyone who is not of the faith (Mormon). What a history! They like to bleed the beast!


    Any additional comments?

    Great book well researched, By a person who tries not to inflame but inform oursides about Mormon History.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    steve 03-06-12
    steve 03-06-12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    39
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I was totally enthralled by this book!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Under the Banner of Heaven to be better than the print version?

    Sure...you got to love Scott Brick. He could read a phone book and make it sound exciting.


    Any additional comments?

    I'm not a religious person and I must admit I knew next to nothing about the Mormons going into this book. But I like Jon Krakauer's style and have enjoyed some of his other books immensely so I decided to give this one a chance. I'm glad I did. Some very interesting stuff going on here and Scott Brick keeps it entertaining.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.