BOOK REVIEW: Aleister Crowley in America

Written by Tobias Churton

Published by Inner Tradition

Inner Traditions published a marvellously eclectic selection of books that make the reader think about the world in a different way. Aleister Crowley was one of the 20th century’s great thinkers. He saw the world in a very new fashion. Often misunderstood, Crowley’s life and work deserves to be known by a far wider audience. He truly lived a life less ordinary.

Tobias Churton has written extremely well-written books on Crowley, most recently Aleister Crowley: The Beast In Berlin. Churton is a world authority on Hermeticism, Gnosticism, Western Esotericism, Freemasonry and Rosicrucianism. He is, in short, the ideal author to carry Crowley’s work and life into the 21st century. Tobias not only understands Crowley, but has the skills as a writer to tell his story in an engaging and entertaining fashion to his readers.

Crowley spent much time in America, first in 1900, then under more dramatic circumstances in 1914 when he arrived for what would be a five-year stay. It would be fair to say he packed five lifetimes into those five years. He worked for British and U.S. Intelligence to undermine Germany’s attempts to keep America out of World War One.

We meet such characters as Irish master painter John Butler Yeats (the father of poet W.B. Yeats) and rocket fuel genius Jack Parsons.

As much a history of the 20th century occult movement in America as a history of Crowley’s time there, this book is a masterful work. |

Steve Earles is author and co-author of numerous projects, including To End All Wars: The WWI Graphic Anthology, available summer 2014 (