Memoirs Non-Fiction True Crime

Captive by Catherine Oxenberg

This is a book by actress Catherine Oxenberg and her attempt to save her daughter India from the NXIVM cult – you know, the one actress Allison Mack was involved in.
She had help writing it, as you can see on the cover, and it is very chatty and conversational, but still very riveting.  I remember watching Catherine’s reality show I Married a Princess, which she did with her ex-husband Casper Van Dien.  India was just a tween on that show, and I was saddened to hear that she got caught up in this horrible cult.  Catherine does reveal quite a bit of details too.
She also goes into her own life, including an instance of abuse in her own childhood, her eating disorder and her own #MeToo moments as an actress.  She even reveals some political leanings, such has her stance on abortion.  She’s had one (I think more than one) and while she acknowledges that it’s a horrible decision to make, she wouldn’t “take” that “choice” away from anyone.  Well, I, obviously, disagree with her stance on abortion.  It is the taking of innocent life, and while she seems to know and understand that, she still thinks that the choice is more important.  I don’t understand that at all.
Through her persistence and connections, the New York Times did a story on the cult, and this actually spurred the police and politicians – including the governor of New York and that slimy sack of shit, Sen. Schumer, to do something about this cult already.  She made a swipe at how only extremists use the term “fake news” – an obvious swipe at Trump without actually naming him.  After all, the cult did brand the NYT article as “fake news”.
Comparing Keith Raniere, the cult’s founder and leader, to President Trump is shitty.  But I wouldn’t necessarily dissuade anyone from reading this book, because aside from that, it’s still pretty good.  The exposure and dismantling of any cult is a good thing.
At the risk of spoiling it, her daughter still seemed caught up in the cult, even after Keith and Allison got arrested for the things they did.  I hope that they all heal from this awful experience.
If you want to know more about cults beyond Scientology and Peoples Temple, this is a good choice.  I do admire Catherine for going above and beyond for her daughter, as any decent mother would.
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