INTRODUCTION. PART I - A WORLD OF SECRETS. What are secret societies?; The roots of secret societies; PART II - RELIGIOUS, MYSTICAL AND OCCULT SOCIETIES. The Knights Templar; Rosicrucians; Freemasons; The Golden Dawn and other esoteric societies; Opus dei; The Priory of Sion; PART III - POLITICAL AND CRIMINAL SOCIETIES. Assassins; Illuminati; Propaganda Due; Elites of the New World Order; Mafia; Triads; INDEX.
Godsfield Bibles are the world's bestselling mind, body and spirit series, having sold 3 million copies across the globe. Secret societies such as the Knights Templar, Opus Dei and the Cathars have captured the public's imagination via novels such as The Da Vinci Code and Kate Mosse's Labyrinth. Written by a leading expert in his field, this book is the subject's most comprehensive illustrated reference book on the market.
Joel Levy is a writer and researcher with a special interest in historical mysteries. He is the author of Secret History, Lost Histories, Fabulous Creatures, The Atlas of Atlantis and The Atlas of Lost Treasures. Location: North London, UK.
In this compact, colorful volume, Levy (Ninja: The Shadow Warrior) presents an essentially chronological overview of many secret societies, ranging from Greek mystery religions to more recent groups who believe that a new world order is coming. Along the way, he does not neglect the Knights Templar, Freemasons, Rosicrucians, and the Bavarian Illuminati-or the interconnections between some of these groups. Levy debunks claims by or about some societies, paying particular attention to societies of conspiracy theorists. Like many Firefly books, this is lavishly illustrated, but the subtitle is inaccurate. The book is not definitive: it is almost completely Eurocentric, devoting only six pages to the Triads and a few more to the Assassins. Readers will find no mention of African, Caribbean, or Native American religious secret societies or discussion of terrorist groups or criminal organizations apart from the Mafia and Triads. There are no notes to support the text, and some chapters end so abruptly it seems a page is missing. VERDICT Books on secret societies abound; this is an adequate addition to collections, but it should not be considered the only or final word on the subject.-Eric Norton, McMillan Memorial Lib., Wisconsin Rapids (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.