Submitter: I am submitting this from a mid-sized public library. It was last checked out in 2012. Besides being out of date in its references to organizations or publications that can help, the case study example that opens the book spans the 1970’s, concluding in the early 1980’s. The “recent cult activity” summary covers the 1960’s and 1970’s (can you say Jonestown?). The single color cover with an illustration the pied-piper leading a group of people whose identities have been taken off like the masks dangling from their hands is especially evocative of institutional publications of the 1980’s. The American Family Foundation mentioned as the publisher is not actually the current foundation of that name (which, as a religious organization, would be far more disturbing), but one that has since changed its name to ICSA – International Cultic Studies Association, and maintains a website with several extensive free online guides that cover the scope of this book and more. Toss the book, keep the site. (I especially appreciated their guide for people leaving cults, called “Starting Out in Mainstream America,” http://startingout.icsa.name/, which has a section on the uses of libraries). I was just glad to realize that the actual text was quite good (non-judgmental with helpful scenarios that weren’t terribly dated), so at least I hadn’t been leaving a BAD book on the shelves since I took the religion collection over.
Holly:That is a creeptastic cover, for sure. Effective for this topic, though. Plus the book is all dirty (see image below). This is an important topic for public libraries, and should be kept up to date!