Don’t Call It a Cult (2021) is the culmination of years of investigation into a secretive self help program that was first accused of branding, blackmailing and starving women in 2017. Its leader Keith Raniere was sentenced to 120 years in prison for sex trafficking, sexual exploitation of a child, wire fraud, racketeering and other crimes. This is the story of NXIVM, the rich and famous people who helped Raniere evade prosecution for decades, and the trial that revealed his darkest secrets to the world.
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PRAISE FOR DCIAC:
“Don’t Call It A Cult is the most detailed, well-reported, and nuanced look at NXIVM’s history, its supporters, and those left destroyed in its wake. If you want to understand NXIVM — and other groups like it — reading Sarah Berman’s account is essential.”
—Scaachi Koul, bestselling author of One Day We’ll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter
“Sarah Berman is absolutely fearless in Don’t Call It a Cult. Her determination to not only tell the difficult, often disturbing story of NXIVM, but tell it right, shines through in every aspect of this gripping book. I simply could not put it down.”
—Alicia Elliott, A Mind Spread Out on the Ground
“Don’t Call It a Cult explains Raniere’s dark charisma and why so many people were attracted to NXIVM and stayed on, even as the manipulation, exploitation, and abuse got extreme. A thoughtful, deeply reported take on a sensational story, one that I won’t soon forget.”
—Rachel Monroe, author of Savage Appetites