Author Deb Simpson recalls life of brother and member of Heaven’s Gate cult in new book

Murfreesboro author and Tennessee Writer’s Alliance president Deb Simpson has dealt with her fair share of tragedy and has decided to deal with it on the printed page. She has written “Closing the Gate: Inside Heaven’s Gate”, a first person account of life with her brother, Jimmy, who was a member of the Heaven’s Gate cult. It is due out this March which coincides with the fifteenth anniversary of the event. While he was not actually in Rancho Santa Fe, CA on March 26, 1997, he did take his own life just five weeks later on May 13.

Writer Simpson has also penned “One Moment, One Memory, One Motion, “a memoir in poetic form about a young girl who endured physical and sexual abuse, and how the presence of one person in her life enabled her to reach beyond the shame, to a place of spiritual healing and joy.”

Advance Review for Closing the Gate:

” Deb Simpson’s familial voices ring with authenticity, call out
to us from the pages of Closing the Gate, and pull the reader
into the midst of a deeply troubled family where Simpson’s
conversational tone insists that we pay attention. She writes
with great courage and honesty in examining Jimmy’s plight:
his dream of a place to call home, his tumble into the world of
a cult, and the inevitable downward spiral that his lonely life
takes. She causes us to examine and reflect on the crucial
developmental years and every child’s yearning to belong.


Susan Ashley Michael, author of

  • Crossing The Bridge of Sighs
  • Toys in the Sand: Recovering Childhood Memories in
    Lakeville, Massachusetts

See the You Tube promo Here: “>Closing the Gate trailer

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