THE LOVE BOMBERS by Gloria D. Miklowitz


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An accurate but plodding report, minimally fictionalized, on the methods and menace of religious cults. ""Middle-class ordinary"" Jeremy Gordon from Pasadena, pressured by his parents to achieve, drops out of Berkeley; he'll stay awhile in San Francisco with ""this group of kids who are into Eastern-Western philosophy study,"" he says on the phone. But mysterious charges have been appearing on his parents' Mastercharge, and he asks them to send his bank book, too. Sensing trouble, his slightly younger sister Jenna and his friend Rick go to find him. The ""group of kids"" turn out to be Adamites, followers of self-proclaimed Messiah Ibram ben Adam, ""a millionaire, with mansions and businesses and properties all over the country, all acquired with money brought in by his converts, his slaves . . . enticed into his church, then brainwashed."" The Adamites spirit Jeremy away to secluded Camp Hope, holding him out as bait to snag Jenna and Rick; and Jenna nearly succumbs to their seeming warmth and ""loving togetherness."" Miklowitz rehashes familiar details about how the cult works its converts like robots, shunts them from place to place, takes their money, allows no sex or privacy. She is blunt about the rock-bottom evil goals: "" 'I am a thinker. I am your brain,' the Master says."" When Jenna and Rick do finally get to see Jeremy, they beseech him to leave, but he's not ready; the faint hope is that someday he may be. Meantime Jenna and Rick have each other, and the reader has had a pretty dull, didactic time.

Pub Date: Oct. 30th, 1981
Publisher: Delacorte