Sally Denton, The Colony: Faith and Blood in a Promised Land

Author Sally Denton will read from and discuss her new book The Colony: Faith and Blood in a Promised Land. Denton will be joined in conversation by Frankie Sue Del Papa.

An investigation into the November, 2019 killings of nine women and children in Northern Mexico—an event that drew international attention—The Colony examines the strange, little-understood world of a polygamist Mormon outpost.

On the morning of November 4, 2019, an unassuming caravan of women and children was ambushed by masked gunmen on a desolate stretch of road in northern Mexico controlled by the Sinaloa drug cartel. Firing semi-automatic weapons, the attackers killed nine people and gravely injured five more. The victims were members of the LeBaron and La Mora communities—fundamentalist Mormons whose forebears broke from the LDS Church and settled in Mexico when their religion outlawed polygamy in the late nineteenth century. The massacre produced international headlines for weeks, and prompted President Donald Trump to threaten to send in the US Army.

In The Colony, bestselling investigative journalist Sally Denton picks up where the initial, incomplete reporting on the attacks ended, and delves into the complex story of the LeBaron clan. Their homestead—Colonia LeBaron—is a portal into the past, a place that offers a glimpse of life within a polygamous community on an arid and dangerous frontier in the mid-1800s, though with smartphones and machine guns. Rooting her narrative in written sources as well as interviews with anonymous women from LeBaron itself, Denton unfolds an epic, disturbing tale that spans the first polygamist emigrations to Mexico through the LeBarons’ internal blood feud in the 1970s—started by Ervil LeBaron, known as the “Mormon Manson”—and up to the family’s recent alliance with the NXIVM sex cult, whose now-imprisoned leader, Keith Raniere, may have based his practices on the society he witnessed in Colonia LeBaron.

A mesmerizing feat of investigative journalism, The Colony doubles as an unforgettable account of sisterhood that can flourish in polygamist communities, against the odds.

Sally Denton is the author of eight books, including bestseller The Bluegrass Conspiracy, and the coauthor of a classic account of Las Vegas, The Money and the Power. She lives in Nevada.

Event date: 
Saturday, July 9, 2022 - 2:00pm
Event address: 
121 California Avenue
Reno, NV 89509
The Colony: Faith and Blood in a Promised Land Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9781631498077
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Liveright - June 28th, 2022