Bad Moon Rising: The Free Online Edition

Book about the Unification Church

My 2008 nonfiction book Bad Moon Rising: The Strange Untold Story of a Cult Leader, his Newspaper and the Right, with a new preface is now available in convenient PDF form. It’s about the embarassing and unlikely ongoing romance between conservative politicians and the Unification Church, the forgotten 1970s “Moonies” mass wedding cult.

If you are still trapped in a high-control church, this edition is easy to share with friends and family without lugging around a bulky, easily-spotted hardback with a garish purple cover.

For the uninitiated, bestselling historian Rick Perlstein (Nixonland) calls the book “tragically neglected” and “one of the most useful books to understand the cynical wickedness of the party that produced Trumpism.” This thread is about my experience.

Here you can read the new preface.

Free to students and free to distribute. If you like, buy me a coffee!

If there is enough interest, I will get around to putting out a Kindle e-book edition with more new material.

If you are at a Unification Church facility and are concerned about surveillance of your downloads, consider setting up a VPN.

Praise for Bad Moon Rising

an excellent new expose…If Don DeLillo had taken a lot of acid and grown a funny bone before he wrote Mao II, this is the book he might have written. What’s scary is that it’s true. Gorenfeld isn’t a sensationalizer; indeed, with material such as Moon provides, he can more than afford understatement.

Jeff Sharlet, executive producer of The Family (Netflix)

Bad Moon Rising is stunningly good. Stylish, exquisitely researched, and morally courageous, it reveals corruption to a depth and breadth unimagined by mere novelists.

Rick Perlstein, best-selling author of Nixonland

The kind of fierce, uncompromising journalism that always matters in a world of ruthless phonies.

Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist

A creepy kleptocratic tale of perverse messianic delusion and amoral Washington elitists that would be utterly unbelievable if not for the fact that it’s all horrifyingly, ridiculously true.

Ken Layne, publisher of The Desert Oracle


Also available at the Internet Archive.

King of America (the original book promo, with footage of Moon’s 2004 Senate “coronation.”)

Part I Part II

Bad Moon Rising ©2022 by John Gorenfeld is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 4.0