Whether or not you’ll admit it publicly, most people have an unexplainable fascination with cults. Although not many people dream of joining one themselves, it’s always interesting to read stories of others who have given up their lives to a cause that is less than wholesome. If you love chilling and touching stories about cults – some real, some fiction – you’ll die for these books (no pun intended).

The Sisters by Rosalind Noonan

Over a decade ago, Glory was left with no choice but to abandon her two daughters – Ruby and Aurora – before leaving town with a man who promised her the world. But now Glory has given birth to a third child while living in a cult-like compound controlled by someone who keeps track of their every move, offering them no way out… until Ruby comes to find her biological mother. This heartbreaking story about a mother, her daughters and a past full of secrets is a moving portrait of the bond between a mother and her children.

The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai

The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai

A novel set in both 1985 and 2015, The Great Believers tells the story of two people whose lives were heavily impacted by the AIDS epidemic of the ’80s and the consequences that followed. When Fiona’s brother dies of AIDS she is not sure what life will be like moving forward, and then, her estranged daughter runs away to join a cult. Years later, Fiona goes in search for her daughter and the two timelines will converge as Fiona grapples with the effect AIDS had on her life.

Once You Go In: A Memoir of Radical Faith by Carly Gelsinger

This shocking memoir tells the true story of Carly Gelsinger, a woman who joined a cult as a young teenager. Once Carly began emulating the practices and routines of her sadistic pastor, she realized the cult was making her life worse. Recounting her struggle to make a new life for herself and escape the cult, Once You Go In spares no details about growing up in a cult.

The Marriage Pact by Michelle Richmond

Alice and Jake are thrilled to start their married life together when they join an exclusive group called The Pact, which promised to keep a marriage exciting and thriving. But soon Alice and Jake will realize that the group is much more sinister than they could have ever imagined and they’re now in it for life.

Pure: Inside the Evangelical Movement that Shamed a Generation of Young Women and How I Broke Free by Linda Kay Klein

In the ’90s, many young Christian girls were misled about matters of sex and the ways it can corrupt even the strongest of men. In this true story, Klein relives a difficult time in her life, describing the ways in which her abusive pastor took advantage of young girls and an entire community.

(This article is sponsored by Kensington Books)
(Feature image courtesy of @simplykelina)