Professional Reviews

“For any parent or family member searching for information about how to get a loved one out of a destructive cult, this book puts it all together — from the real nature of cults, to the right way to prepare for an intervention, to the actual experiences of a cult-buster who’s been at the head of his field for decades.”  — Tony Ortega, Journalist and former Village Voice editor

“Experts agree that thought reform is one of the greatest dangers to society and that the best defense is education. No person has done more to educate the public about its dangers then Rick Ross. When the media has needed explanations it has been Rick Ross providing the answers in simple easy to understand language. Now he has put it all into a book. Knowledge can be the best protection. And that’s the best reason to read this book.” — Paul Morantz, author of “Escape: My Life Long War Against Cults”

“In his masterful new book, Cults Inside Out, Rick Ross has delivered an exceptional and critically needed resource. He has gathered together in one comprehensive volume detailed, documented information about the diverse and growing number of controlling persons and groups preying on individuals, families and communities in the United States and worldwide. He brings to this impressive body of information his own expertise and first-hand experience spanning three decades helping victimized families. If you want to educate yourself, inoculate your family, and equip your loved ones with understanding and awareness about how predatory people and groups can steal their minds, their hearts, and their lives, read Cults Inside Out. Then make a gift of it to a friend.” — Flo Conway and Jim Siegelman, authors of Snapping: America’s Epidemic of Sudden Personality Change

“Rick Ross has provided us with a  wealth of information in Cults Inside Out, which bears the fruits of his extensive knowledge and decades of experience in working with those who have impacted by a destructive cult. His comprehensive review of the history from the 1970s to the present is much needed, give that many young people today are unaware of events that were headlines when they occurred, such as Jonestown and how they came about. There are many audiences for this book: people with loved ones in cults, former cult members, helping professionals looking to educate themselves, people working in the legal system, educators and others. This book also provides excellent guidelines for people who have decided to intervene with a cult-involved loved one and are seeking help. Ross presents his own approach in great detail, which is honest, educational non-forcible and non-coercive — the opposite of what destructive cults do. I highly recommend this book for anyone who is interested in learning more about cults and how to help others or themselves to become or remain free of undue influence.” — Monica Pignotti, PhD

“This book is unique among the books written about cults. My hope is that people will carefully read it. The author has firsthand knowledge of the subject and is qualified to explain cults based on his many years of experience. Over the years Rick Ross has established the single-largest website devoted to the topic of cults and their associated practices. This book is a type of capstone to his long-standing work. Ross is effectively in the information and education business. He has labored tenaciously toward providing educational tools for others to help them deal with the ongoing and often misunderstood world of cults. Contained within the book are illustrations and examples of cultic histories, interventions and statements about the problems associated with cults. This book will not disappoint, but rather it will provide insight and understanding.” — Cathleen Mann, PhD

“The Magnum Opus of the history of cults, help and resources, brilliant and superb writing that will remain a classic and of great importance to all those wanting deeper research and education on cults.” — Debra R. Van Neste, Cult Awareness Radio

Reader Reviews

“I have read nearly fifty books on cults and this is by far the best. It is excellent for ex-cult members and their families. It has an excellent list of resources and concise descriptions of them so follow up is easy. Rick Ross knows his subject and it shows. He covers the essentials so thoroughly this book and its referenced materials could form the basis for a comprehensive course on cults.”

“Ross guides readers on a careful and methodical exploration of his experiences with a wide variety of controlling belief systems, including spelling out exactly how he helped people to free themselves.”

“Although we may think of cults as something relegated to the 1970s, the phenomenon of individuals and groups—both large and small—that utilize dangerous techniques and manipulate the psyche and emotions to exercise undue influence over people while promising ‘enlightenment,’ true joy,’ ‘realize one’s true potential,’ ‘self-awareness,’ etc., is unfortunately still with us. Self-styled gurus, pop psychotherapists, facilitators, life coaches, and other merchants of snake oil are back in vogue and insidiously penetrating every segment of society. Enter cult expert Rick Ross, who has taken his three decades of experience in the fields of cult busting and exit counseling and distilled it into this compendium. The book serves as both a resource for anyone suffering the effects of a loved one who has been victimized and as a vaccine to prevent infection. Congratulations and thanks are due Ross for this important work.”

“I read this work of non-fiction as though I were reading a book of fiction, that is, from cover to cover and never once skipping ahead. I consider this book to be the encyclopedia of books about cults, for it addresses every aspect of the world of coercive groups, large and small, both in the national and international arenas. As a Psychotherapist, I will utilize the tenets of Ross’s methods of intervention. I wish this book was around when I started out in my field. I may then have been successful in my attempts to alter the misguided thinking of several patients.”

“Brilliant. I am still recovering, a decade later, and just came across this book. Part of me still lives in that world. This book is a remarkable touchstone and a powerful key for healing. It will do untold good for newly exiting survivors and families and friends and people like me, years and years later. You have to exit all the way, not just bits and pieces. Here is a how-to from the best. Deep gratitude, Mr. Ross. And all who help.”

“Great book! I have a family member who is falling into the trap of a cult group. It has been causing much confusion and agony to the whole family, including aging parents, loving spouse as well as growing child because he is so obsessed with the group’s agenda that family became unimportant in his mind. Over a year, we have been discussing this matter with him but was puzzled by his lacking the ability of reasoning and critical thinking. After reading this book, we finally, understand his behavior and mental status are typical of a brain-washed cult member and the group he is involved is a very true destructive cult. This book taught us to better deal with the problem and keep a better relationship with him.”

“Unfortunately my adult daughter has recently joined an LGAT. This book provided my husband and me with a wealth of knowledge about cult definition, recognition, intervention, and more. Our initial attitude of shock, and dismay, must now be channeled into a proper way to retrieve her from the grasp of this group, while still retaining her trust and love. This book is an encyclopedia of information and could easily be made into a college course. A must read for anyone interested in the field of group peer pressure and how to deal with it.”

“This is such a good book and an important one on this topic. It should be required reading in some college degree plans.”


    The latest news and research about cults through the Cult Education Institute

    You’ve seen them in movies and on TV, but cults are more prevalent than you think—and they’re armed with strategies that can brainwash and persuade even the most unlikely of candidate.