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Wed Nov 11, 2020, 07:58 PM

Boy Whose Near-Death Experience Helped Launch Heaven Tourism Genre Says It Was All Made Up

EDIT

Until things came crashing back to earth. The cover of The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven calls the book “a true story.” But the boy himself now says it was not true at all. In 2015, Alex sent a letter to a conservative Christian blog dramatically renouncing the book. “I did not die. I did not go to Heaven,” he wrote. “I said I went to heaven because I thought it would get me attention. … People have profited from lies, and continue to.” Alex’s retraction also became a sensation, with reporters unable to resist the sudden, hilarious perfection of his last name: Malarkey.

Although The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven has been off shelves for years now, yanked by the publisher after Alex’s disavowal, the drama around it has quietly continued to roil. In 2018, Alex filed a lawsuit against Tyndale House, a major Christian publisher based in suburban Chicago, accusing the company of defamation and exploitation, among other charges. He’s seeking a payout at least equal to the book’s profits. Alex, who turned 21 in 2019, now lives with his mother. He was valedictorian of his high school, but he has been a quadriplegic since the accident and requires full-time care. Kevin and Beth divorced in 2018, and Beth says she has no idea what happened to the money Kevin earned from the book. The suit alleges that she and Alex are “on the verge of being homeless.” Alex was a minor when the book was published, and claims he was not a party to the contract. (Tyndale says in court filings that Kevin entered into an agreement on his own and Alex’s behalf, and that while Beth was not party to the contract, she “consented as a matter of fact” to the book’s production by helping to arrange interviews and supplying family photos.) A judge has dismissed most of the lawsuit’s counts. The next court date is scheduled for August 2019.

According to Alex and his mother, it was Kevin Malarkey who turned an injured boy’s murmurings about angels into a complex story of a journey to heaven and back. As Alex’s lawsuit describes it, Kevin “concocted” the story that Alex had gone to heaven. Though Alex was billed as the book’s co-author, he told me he has never even read the full contents of The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven, let alone knowingly contributed to it. He said that some of the passages under his name were drawn from conversations with his father, but he didn’t realize they were intended for a book. “I didn’t write it,” Alex told me. “I have no idea what’s in it. I don’t know what I said.” He knows enough about the book, however, to feel sure that it doesn’t represent what really happened.

No one spoke up to defend the book after Alex recanted his version of events. Tyndale caved quickly, not only taking the book out of print but also announcing it was “saddened to learn” that Alex now claimed to have made up the story. In the years since, the book has come to seem to most people like a straightforward case of fakery and exploitation. Kevin Malarkey, who had been the book’s chief promoter, stopped giving interviews the day of his son’s disavowal. He has not spoken to the press in more than four years. He disappeared so completely that the Washington Post reported in 2018 that he was dead. Until 2019, one afternoon, he finally decided to tell his version of the events that rocked the Christian publishing industry and tore his own family apart.

EDIT

https://slate.com/human-interest/2019/07/the-boy-who-came-back-from-heaven-christian-book-scandal.html

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Reply Boy Whose Near-Death Experience Helped Launch Heaven Tourism Genre Says It Was All Made Up (Original post)
hatrack Nov 2020 OP
Beakybird Nov 2020 #1
A HERETIC I AM Nov 2020 #2
Karadeniz Nov 2020 #3
Mariana Nov 2020 #5
Karadeniz Nov 2020 #6
RussBLib Nov 2020 #4

Response to hatrack (Original post)

Wed Nov 11, 2020, 08:04 PM

1. I knew this book was bullshit! My dead grandma told me so.

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Response to hatrack (Original post)

Wed Nov 11, 2020, 09:20 PM

2. There was a time way back when on DU....

where we (the folks who pay attention to and post in this group and it's predecessor) were admonished by the administrators to not call believers "deluded".

OK...fine.


Pick your poison, then. Because if this bullshit isn't delusion, it's criminal.

“With or without religion, good people can behave well and bad people can do evil; but for good people to do evil - that takes religion.”
― Steven Weinberg

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Response to hatrack (Original post)

Wed Nov 11, 2020, 11:09 PM

3. One attention seeker doesn't invalidate the authentic experiences. Two accounts, both by

Doctors, are compelling.

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Response to Karadeniz (Reply #3)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 05:27 PM

5. What are the authors' names, please? TIA. nt.

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Response to Mariana (Reply #5)

Wed Nov 18, 2020, 07:23 PM

6. The two I thought people might give some weight to were each written by medical doctors.

My #2 choice is To Heaven and Back by Dr. Mary Neal. It doesn't have all the medical info, but she has a medical background.

My #1 choice is giving me trouble! I read it ages ago, but I gave that Kindle away so I can't be sure I'm finding the right book. The book I read was by a brain surgeon and he went into all the medical reasons why his brain couldn't have been hallucinating or reacting to drugs or dying or anything explainable. Looking on the net, I found Proof of Heaven by Dr. Eben Alexander. I can't be sure this is the book I read, but you can tell if it goes into lots of medical info.

One of my favorite authors is Brian Weiss. I think his first book was Many Lives, Many Masters. He's a psychiatrist, headed up the U. Fla
Hospital psych unit, so his background is impeccable.

If you want more, I have a ton I've read!

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Response to hatrack (Original post)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 11:02 AM

4. I'm shocked! Just shocked!

People trying to profit from religion!? The hell you say!!

hahahahahahahahahaha

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