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Publisher's Summary

Written with humor and personality, this debut memoir recounts a woman's spiritual quest of experiencing thirty religions before her thirtieth birthday. Post-Traumatic Church Syndrome is for questioners, doubters, misfits, and seekers of all faiths, and tackles the universal struggle to heal what life has broken.

On her twenty-ninth birthday, while guests were arriving downstairs, Reba Riley was supposedly upstairs getting dressed. In actuality, she was slumped on the floor sobbing about everything from the meaning of life to the pile of dirty laundry on the floor.

Life without God was crashing in on her. And she was sick and tired of feeling sick and tired. She uttered a desperate prayer, and then the idea came to her—thirty by thirty. And thus she embarked on a year-long quest to experience thirty religions by her thirtieth birthday. During her spiritual sojourn, Riley:

  • Was interrogated about her sex life by Amish grandmothers
  • Disco danced in a Buddhist temple
  • Fasted for thirty days without food—or wine
  • Washed her lady parts in a mosque bathroom
  • Was audited by Scientologists
  • Learned to meditate with an urban monk
  • Snuck into a Yom Kippur service with a fake grandpa in tow
  • And finally discovered she didn't have to choose a religion to choose God

In a debut memoir that is funny and earnest, Riley invites questioners, doubters, misfits, and curious believers to participate in the universal search to heal what life has broken. Post-Traumatic Church Syndrome takes you by the hand and reminds you that sometimes you first have to be lost in order to be found.

©2015 Reba Riley. All rights reserved. (P)2015 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.

What listeners say about Post-Traumatic Church Syndrome

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Nope

I couldn’t get past the valley girl speech pattern. As someone who recently severed a lifelong relationship with her religion, I was hoping to find some solace and humor from this book. Sadly, the author/narrator ruined it with her silly word choices and inflection. This book is probably better in written form.

4 people found this helpful

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Love Love Love this Book!

one of the few books that was enhanced by the reading of the author. As a Christian, I needed to hear this book and will think of it often. It is amazing.

3 people found this helpful

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Voice like nails on chalkboard

A self-indulgent, immature, disrespectful memoir. Another young person that needs to know what hard Times really are like. You can choose another religion or route without disrespecting the beliefs of others. I really thought this would be a remembrance of funny things and situations that helped you grow up in the church. She remembers it as if it were torture. Ridiculous. Wish I had not interested in this piece of junk. And yes, her voice will drive you crazy

2 people found this helpful

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Couldn't get past the first chapter.

Most authors shouldn't narrate their own books and this is a perfect example. Reba Riley tries too hard. Material that might have been funny if performed by a professional comes across as cloying and self-conscious. Five minutes in I gave up and switched to the radio.

8 people found this helpful

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Made me laugh - and cry - and laugh again

For those of us that struggle with our raisin', this book is a literal godsend. The author's fascinating journey was as touching as it was sweetly hilarious. It was wonderfully narrated and so very heartfelt. I couldn't stop listening until I finished it.

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Pondering

although i appreciate the stuggle Reba went through I stuggled with some of her ideas.

1 person found this helpful

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Wonderful story and well read

This is a beautiful true story about someone's spiritual and physical journey. It is beautifully written and beautifully told. It is well worth the credit. It provides powerful insight about spiritual injury and spiritual healing. And in the in it is a blessing of hope.

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Compelling, authentic, hopeful

I didn't think I would ever meet someone who shared such a similar experience as me! (I felt like I met Reba). I can't express how affirmed and comforted yet challenged this book made me feel. Trusting my own spiritual process, which doesn't fit into the tidy theology that I grew up in, has been difficult. I have taken risks and expanded my experience of God outside of what many I have grown up with have done. This book helps me to know that it is worth the risk in order for my faith to be restored and authentically mine.

1 person found this helpful

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Life. Changing.

Oh Reba ...

My adolescence was the complete opposite of yours. My amazing father, who is also my best friend, is an Aethiest. The rest of my family is Christian, but nobody has a strong pull to any particular style. I had been to church MAYBE five times by the time I was 18.

Yet, I felt you wrote your book for me. I have been struggling recently. I tried Christian churches on and off through my twenties, became Catholic at 30 to marry my husband, and found myself crying at the alter of mega churches amidst my “almost” divorce in 2012.

I’ve always been looking for something and I could never figure out what it was. I like church, a lot; however I always felt like I was betraying my true self by going to a church knowing that I believed very, very little of the Bible. It made me feel like a fraud.

Your book made me laugh and cry and realize that I can embrace a life with God without selling my soul to a religion I cannot embrace. I am not there yet, but you made me see that it is indeed possible.

Thank you for this. Thank you thank you thank you. I will be going on my own quest thanks to you, so lookout religious institutions of Metro Detroit! I’m coming to hear what you have to say. ❤️

3 people found this helpful

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A must read for victims of PTCS!

I’ve been on my own journey for truth which is what led me to read the reviews for this book. Being from Louisiana and often hearing “... that accent!”, I wasn’t bothered by those reviewers who had problems with the “valley girl” reader; however, it was a bit distracting.
But!! This is s great book and I encourage anyone who is searching for their own truth to listen/read this one. I plan to buy one for each of my 3 daughters and we’re going to form our own book club starting with this one!

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  • David
  • 04-09-19

Excellent humorous treatment

Enjoyed this book. Took a while to get used to the author / reader but warned to her. Feelings of hurt and betrayal from church fundamentalism genuine but her response to it by exploring and facing head on disdain for religion unusual yet admirable. Recommended