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Killer Cults

This isn't a book. It's a "topic magazine," published by Time Life Books in early 2018, and drawn from both publications' years of historic editions.

Now a confession: a few years ago I became intrigued by Charles Manson, Laurel Canyon, the burgeoning of the youth culture, and ultimately, the Tate/LaBianca murders. So I read just about everything I could find on the subject. When I saw this title staring at me from the grocery store magazine racks, I couldn't resist.

The thick glossy actually recounts the stories, in chronological order, of 5 cults that rose, from the 60s through the 90s, though one is reputedly still operating. Each one promised the coming Apocalypse, relied on a charismatic central figure, and ended up delivering a horrific story of the promised land gone awry.

Included in the book are The Manson Family, Jonestown, The Branch Davidians, Heavens Gate, and Aum Shinrikyo.

The book starts with probably the most notorious, and clearly the one th…

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