• by Lauren Drain
  • Narrated by Lauren Drain
  • 8 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

You've likely heard of the Westboro Baptist Church. Perhaps you've seen their pickets on the news, the members holding signs with messages that are too offensive to copy here, protesting at events such as the funerals of soldiers, the 9-year-old victim of the recent Tucson shooting, and Elizabeth Edwards, all in front of their grieving families. The WBC is fervently anti-gay, anti-Semitic, and anti- practically everything and everyone. And they aren't going anywhere: In March, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of the WBC's right to picket funerals.
Since no organized religion will claim affiliation with the WBC, it's perhaps more accurate to think of them as a cult. Lauren Drain was thrust into that cult at the age of 15, and then spat back out again seven years later. Banished is the first look inside the organization, as well as a fascinating story of adaptation and perseverance.
Lauren spent her early years enjoying a normal life with her family in Florida. But when her formerly liberal and secular father set out to produce a documentary about the WBC, his detached interest gradually evolved into fascination, and he moved the entire family to Kansas to join the church and live on their compound. Over the next seven years, Lauren fully assimilated their extreme beliefs, and became a member of the church and an active and vocal picketer. But as she matured and began to challenge some of the church's tenets, she was unceremoniously cast out from the church and permanently cut off from her family and from everyone else she knew and loved.
Banished is the story of Lauren's fight to find herself amidst dramatic changes in a world of extremists and a life in exile.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Intersting glimpse inside this hideous cult

The Westboro Church (I choose to exclude Baptist from the title because their beliefs are far from any Baptist church I have ever known) is a place one would picture the real Anti-Christ being born into. I can't understand how so many well educated, seemingly worldly people would fall into the spell of this hate organization. How they keep the people they have still escapes me. Even Lauren, as she tells the story seems to be sending a message back letting her family know she never wanted banishment. Her activism now regarding human rights may be her way to her own salvation or may be a punishment to those that turned her their back on her. This books leaves that question open. Regardless, it was well written and I could not stop listening to her story.
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- Michelle

Good but...

The story was good but there were parts where I felt like she still held some of those old beliefs. It seemed that at parts she was spending from the mindset of her old self but she was telling it clearly as something that happened in the past. The story was good and the ending was very positive. There is a lot of offensive material when she talks about her time in the wb, but that is to be expected.

Overall great read!
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- Jennifer

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-05-2013
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio