While some of the books I review on my site are furnished by the publishers, authors, or publicists for the purpose of review all of my reviews are truthful, honest, and my sincere opinion.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Review: The Kingdom Hall No More by Daniel Chamberlayne

I'd heard about this book while doing some research on religions. I purchased this from Amazon.

About the Book:

Freshman author Daniel Chamberlayne discuss his 16 years experiences growing up as a Jehovah Witness and attending the Kingdom Hall in Hollis, Queens, New York Daniel discusses all his activities in the kingdom hall and what led up to getting baptized with no choice of his own and what led up to getting "disfellowshipped' and "shunned" from the organization and how is Daniel living now since his departure of the Jehovah Witnesses in 1990.

You can purchase a copy of The Kingdom Hall no More from my Amazon store.

My Review:

Having Jehovah Witness family members and having attended meetings with them as a child I tend to connect with books about Witnesses as I know the subject matter. However I am not a Jehovah Witness but I feel to have a better understanding of religion you have to understand them all, whether you agree with their philosophy or not.

I did connect with Daniel in this story. I remember going to the meetings as a child and knew exactly what he was talking about. Which made it much easier for me to connect. Although, not having much experience attending other religious events as a child I would expect them to be similar from a child's perspective. But this story isn't so much about his attending meetings as a child as it is about his journey through life and the actions that led to his disfellowship.

His story is not unlike many others that I have read or heard about. Although his is filled with more famous people than the rest. It's amazing how many people who were influential in rap and hip-hop Chamberlayne has connected with in his life. I know they weren't the stars they are now when he met them, but I would have been so star-struck and he kept his cool. I know I wouldn't have been so cool about it.

My heart hurt for Chamberlayne as he talks about the dark times when he was shunned by his mother and most of his family and friends. As a child you tend to befriend the friends of your parents, and because his mother's friends were almost all witnesses most of his friends were witnesses. That would have been hard to deal with. And some of the tactics his mother takes to make him accept his life as a Jehovah Witness were just crazy to me. My parents and I disagreed many times about many things but I would never have been subjected to what his mother subjected him to. I was so sad.

The writing wasn't great, but the story and the things Chamberlayne went through (the good and the bad) were so compelling. I just wanted to keep reading to see what kind of craziness was going to happen next! I'd say it was well worth the read. 

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