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Take Me For A Ride: Coming Of Age In A Destructive Cult

by Mark Laxer

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From Library Journal
The thousand American followers of Fred Lenz (a.k.a Rama) accept his claim to be the simultaneous incarnation of Hindu deities Vishnu and Shiva; accordingly, they finance his empyrean lifestyle, complete with Long Island mansion. Joining Rama's group in 1979, 17-year-old Mark Laxer and his brother David quickly became members of the inner circle. This work chronicles Mark's faithful service to his guru until 1985, when, he alleges, Rama's descent into exploitation and deception finally became intolerable. While his portrait of a charismatic leader's slide into madness is gripping, perhaps more important here is Laxer's disclosure of some of the motives impelling young people to immerse themselves in cults. Except for the author's distracting tendency to toggle timeframes without clearly identifying them, the work is well written. Recommended for libraries with a strong interest in cults and "alternative" spiritual quests.
- Bill Piekarski, Southwestern Coll. Lib., Chula Vista, Cal.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.



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