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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 5:01 pm 
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Yes, Inside Scentology was great. I thought it was pretty batshit until I started reading Lawrence Wright's Going Clear. Reitman was not nearly as hard on Hubbard. Overall, I think the Reitmam book might be the better basic, A-Z introduction. She makes it all make sense, as much as Scientology can. Wright has some more current information. I find it difficult to recommend one over the other. Both are comprehensive, well-written, balanced, and well organized. Reitman and Wright are both professional, respected journalists more interested in telling a true story than sensationalizing (if anything, they both downplayed the incredible).

After reading one of those, I really recommend reading Jenna Miscavige Hill's book. She is the niece of the current leader and was raised in the church, in horrid conditions, separated from her parents, basically in a work camp. She really comes across as a marvelous person. Despite being raised in that environment, she has a keen sense of justice and compassion and was able to get herself out. The biggest problem with her book is that I think it would lose a lot in translation if the reader isn't familiar with a lot of Scoentology already. Scientology is such an alphabet soup and has so many redefined words. Hubbard was big on what he called "word clearing" where he basically says everything bad in the world is because a person read past a word they didn't understand. Scientology courses seem really big on spending hours looking words up in dictionaries. And then making clay models.

Not a book (yet), but tonyortega.org is one of the best sources online formScientology information. Ortega was the editor of the village Voice and wrote extensively about Scientology for years. He recently quit to focus on his blog and upcoming book.

I've been reading a lot about Scientology lately, and yet I'm still reading most of this stuff with my mouth hanging one. It's sad and scary, and hopefully they have a big collapse coming with a lot of legal issues coming to a head.

I have Blown For Good by Marc Headley to read.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:05 pm 
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I reading Jenna Miscavige Hill's book right now. After that is Going Clear. My library doesn't have Inside Scientology in ebook format so I'll have to postpone that.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:56 pm 
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Check out the blog I posted if you are stumbling over any weird acronyms or other church stuff she doesn't fully explain. Or you can ask here.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 9:44 pm 
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One of my favorite non-fiction books from 2013 was Far From the Tree:Parents, Children and the Search for Identity by Andrew Solomon. It's about parents of children who are very different from they are for a variety of reasons and how they have come to accept them. The author's website is here. The stories are really amazing. But be warned, it's a huge book but you can skip around. Each chapter is devoted to a different topic: deafness, dwarfism, transgender, prodigies, and so forth.

The book got the most press because the author was able to interview Dylan Klebold's parent in depth.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 9:57 pm 
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Andrew Solomon had a nice TED talk about this. I was interested in all the aspects of differentness.

LINK: http://www.ted.com/talks/andrew_solomon ... _what.html


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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 10:03 pm 
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I just noted some that I want to read this year from this list:
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/08/books ... .html?_r=0

Five Days at Memorial (Katrina)
Wave (tsunami)
Going Clear (Scientology)
The Smartest Kids in the World (education policy)

There are others I want to add to my reading list, but I'm trying to make more time for fiction. My grad classes force me to read so much NF that I need to branch out.


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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2014 1:38 am 
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I'm reading Buddhism and Psychotherapy by Manly P. Hall, and yeah. That shiitake makes a lot of sense.


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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2014 2:12 am 
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I just read a really well-written and engaging book about the current cultural shifts in India, called "India Calling." I loved it.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2014 11:31 pm 
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Vantine wrote:
One of my favorite non-fiction books from 2013 was Far From the Tree:Parents, Children and the Search for Identity by Andrew Solomon. It's about parents of children who are very different from they are for a variety of reasons and how they have come to accept them. The author's website is here. The stories are really amazing. But be warned, it's a huge book but you can skip around. Each chapter is devoted to a different topic: deafness, dwarfism, transgender, prodigies, and so forth.

The book got the most press because the author was able to interview Dylan Klebold's parent in depth.

I got this from the library and am into the third section now. It's quite good. A bit heavy on wealthier parents so far so that must skew it a bit. But the stories are interesting. And the first couple of pages were really insightful.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:46 am 
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One of the best non-fiction books I know is "Congo: The Epic History of a People" by David van Reybrouck. Actually, it seems like it's not released in the US yet, but will be in 2014? Weird... It's originally a Belgian book. It's just amazing, I've never read a history book like this. It's more of an unraveling of people, places, slavery. I've never read a history book that was so focused on individuals and yet still manages to get the bigger picture across so well.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:56 am 
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That sounds up my alley. Is there much discussion of diamond/mineral exploitation?

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:00 am 
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I can't remember how much of it. I read it about a year ago. The book is about 800 pages long and tries to cover the whole history of Congo, with an maybe a tiny emphasis on the colonisation period and recent history. I found the book very depressing, I must add. It kind of made me want to strangle every "why should we help other countries, what did they ever do for me" person I've met.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 5:01 am 
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When others had a big hand in forking things up, they ought to help repair the damage.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 1:22 pm 
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Just got Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood and the Prison of Belief from the library based on recommendations from the PPK.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 1:34 pm 
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I just started reading "Radical Acceptance" by Tara Brach and I really like it so far.

For Christmas my partner bought me the whole set of Voice of Witness books. I plan on taking my time reading them, probably one passage at a time and mixing them up. I figure this will last me years to come! I love the idea of reading personal narratives rather than a journalists take on situations, which of course has its value as well.


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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 1:45 pm 
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apparently Wild was made into a movie starring Reese Witherspoon.
interesting casting

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:58 pm 
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LW, does Inside Scientology have a lot of information not covered in Going Clear?

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:01 pm 
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I just started reading Jennifer Saunders autobiography

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 5:46 am 
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LisaPunk wrote:
apparently Wild was made into a movie starring Reese Witherspoon.
interesting casting

Oh, I think I might watch that!

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 6:23 am 
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blondiefk wrote:
LW, does Inside Scientology have a lot of information not covered in Going Clear?


There is a lot of overlap. The difference is mainly in perspectives. IS is more of a general overview and GC focuses a bit more on celebrities and specific incidents. You definitely don't need to read both unless you are really into the topic. IS might be my preference, by a very slim margin. You can't go wrong with either one.

Check out tonyortega.org for ongoing coverage of a pretty important lawsuit against Scientology. They are scrambling to cover their asparagi and keep David Miscavige from being deposed. You can not make this shiitake up. They have a team of umpteen lawyers and filed a motion complaining that they were being bullied and harassed by the lawsuit filed against them for stalking and harassing. A bunch of jaw dropping text messages were just released in another deposition. Miscaviages own lawyer even tried to argue that even if DM has a "black heart" this is all still a religious issue.

Batshit is the only word I can think of that even begins to cover the scope of all this.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2014 3:18 pm 
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I just finished reading Scott Jurek's new book Eat and Run. It was a great insight to running and also how to get meaning out of life. There are a bunch of recipes in the book, too. It would be a great read for an athlete who might want to improve his performance by diet.


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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2014 7:17 am 
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quagga wrote:
I just finished reading Scott Jurek's new book Eat and Run. It was a great insight to running and also how to get meaning out of life. There are a bunch of recipes in the book, too. It would be a great read for an athlete who might want to improve his performance by diet.


I'm on the waiting list for this at the library, but they only have 1 copy and I'm number nine on the list! You would think that with such a popular book they might consider getting a second copy!

Anyway, I finished Going Clear and Underground; Going Clear really picked up after the first section, and Underground was fascinating, although I admit I skipped some of the interviews as they got a little repetitive after a while. I'm going away for a week today and I'm taking with me Ben Goldacre's Bad Pharma and Paleofantasy by Marlene Zuk.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2014 7:20 am 
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Gossip From the Forest - Sara Maitland

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2012/o ... est-review

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2014 7:49 am 
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pandacookie wrote:
Vantine wrote:
One of my favorite non-fiction books from 2013 was Far From the Tree:Parents, Children and the Search for Identity by Andrew Solomon. It's about parents of children who are very different from they are for a variety of reasons and how they have come to accept them. The author's website is here. The stories are really amazing. But be warned, it's a huge book but you can skip around. Each chapter is devoted to a different topic: deafness, dwarfism, transgender, prodigies, and so forth.

The book got the most press because the author was able to interview Dylan Klebold's parent in depth.

I got this from the library and am into the third section now. It's quite good. A bit heavy on wealthier parents so far so that must skew it a bit. But the stories are interesting. And the first couple of pages were really insightful.

I'm glad you are enjoying it. Some of it is heartbreaking...

If you liked Going Clear you should look at the author's other books. I've read: The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11, Remembering Satan (about a case of "recovered memory"), and Saints and Sinners.


The author of Klansville USA was on Fresh Air recently. I think I am going to read that next. It's about the rise of the Klan in Civil-Rights-Era North Carolina. I think the Goodreads' reviews are skewed by the fact it's an academic book.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you reading? (Non-Fiction Edition)
PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2014 10:26 am 
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Funny, I started reading Going Clear recently too, although without even realizing there had been discussion of it on here. I ran across it at work and thought it looked interesting. I'm about halfway through and finding it fascinating.

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