Autobiographies, Blog Tour, Book Review, Nonfiction, Rachel's Random Resources

The Unlikely Occultist: A Biographical Novel of Alice A. Bailey by Isobel Blackthorn

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Librarian Heather Brown discovers the fascinating life of Alice Bailey – a long forgotten occultist.

Back in 1931, Alice is preparing to give a speech at a Swiss summer school. But how can she stave the tide of hatred and greed set to bring the world to its knees? 

Soon after, Alice is put on Hitler’s blacklist. What she doesn’t realize is the enormity of her influence to the world, and the real enemies who are much closer than she thinks.

A dynamic and complex figure, Alice Bailey’s reach was huge. She was influential among people and organizations of global power, especially the United Nations, and is widely regarded as the Mother of the New Age.

Yet today she is maligned by fundamentalist Christians, Theosophists, Jews, academics and above all, by conspiracy theorists. Are any of these groups justified in rejecting the unlikely occultist?

“Blackthorn’s exploration of Alice Bailey’s life and work provides a unique and intimate insight into Bailey’s life and the times in which she lived. For anyone seeking to explore the roots of Bailey’s influence on the New Age movement as well as her unsought role as the bête noire of the conspiracy scene, there’s no better place to begin.” – Aaron John Gulyas, associate professor and author of Conspiracy Theories


Alice A. Bailey is a woman who had dedicated her life to righting the wrongs of power, only to be shafted and duly shunted into the margins of history.

I seem to be among the many who have never heard of Alice Bailey and was intrigued by how she described herself “as a rabid orthodox Christian turned occult teacher.” She was born in England in 1880 to an aristocratic family and the book follows her difficult and significant life explaining why she was called “the mother of the New age in the 1920s and 1930s”. Her vision of a unified society included a global “spirit of religion” different from traditional religious forms and including the concept of the “Age of Aquarius”.

Ms. Blackthorn’s way of telling the story through an archivist’s discovery of Ms. Bailey’s biography through the papers of a deceased professor is creative and original.

An interesting and enjoyable read about a very charismatic woman who wrote more than twenty-four books on theosophical subjects.

Thank you to Ms. Blackthorn for giving me the opportunity to review this book with no expectation of a positive review.


Unlikely Occultist

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Isobel BlackthornIsobel Blackthorn is a prolific novelist of unique and engaging fiction. She writes across a range of genres, including psychological thrillers, gripping mysteries, captivating travel fiction and hilarious dark satire. 

Isobel holds a PhD in Western Esotericism for her ground-breaking study of the texts of Theosophist Alice A. Bailey. Her engagement with Alice Bailey’s life and works has culminated in the biographical novel, The Unlikely Occultist.

Follow her on her website, Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter, and Instagram.


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