Child of Satan, Child of God

by Susan Atkins

In 1977, author Susan  Atkins published her autobiography in which she recounted the time she spent with Manson and the family, her religious conversion, and her prison experiences.

CHILD OF SATAN, CHILD OF GOD is Susan Aktins autobiography. Millions met Susan Atkins in Helter Skelter. She was young and attractive, but desperate to find happiness. Alcohol, drugs, and promiscuity didn’t satisfy her… She was looking for more. When she met Charles Manson, she felt she had met the world’s savior. In this book is Susan’s personal account of life and death with the murderous Manson “family.” Condemned to die, rejected by society, she found life on death row – “a miraculous rebirth as real as a resurrection.” What this book represents is less of insight into the mind of a killer and more of an effort to demonstrate that Susan had, at the time she wrote this, separated herself from Manson’s lethal ideology and recognized that she had made an error “allowing” herself to be controlled by Manson.

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Convicted of murder and initially sentenced to death Susan Atkins tells her story of coming from a dysfunctional family and becoming involved in a cult-like organization that catered to insecure individuals looking for acceptance and a feeling of belonging. Sunk into the depths of depravity by becoming involved with drugs and selling her body only made her more miserable. Although she claims not to have done any actual killing she thankfully found happiness in God by accepting Jesus as her personal savior. The book is somewhat dated as Susan has since passed on from a brain tumor. Some individuals may question Susan’s sincerity for such horrific crimes but that would indicate people question Jesus’s ability to forgive even the worst sinners.

Bill Emblom

Several months ago I bought and read this book from Amazon, and I love this book. I was 14 in August 1969 when my mom and I were downstairs in our house watching the news when mom told me Sharon Tate was murdered and many years ago I found out Susan Atkins wrote a book called Child Of Satan, Child Of God in 1977. Fifty years later I saw on Amazon that the book is still available and I had thought it was no longer available and out of print. If you order and read this book, be sure to order updated version that has nine pages of Atkins photos that were not in original 1977 book.

I love this book however it is very sad and depressing. Susan was an attractive young woman yet had a horrible upbringing with both her parents alcoholics, her mom died of cancer when she was 15 or 16, and I lost my brother Jim at age 60 in 2017 from a rare cancer. She was also sexually abused by a relative and got involved in drugs, sex, and crime as a teen and met that maniac and psychopath Charles Manson that ruined her life. If she hadn’t gotten involved with Manson and his family, I don’t think she would have killed anybody. The book is great and talks about most of her life until 1977 and I’m glad she found God and became a Christian and God has watched over me my whole life. Hopefully she went to heaven when she died.

When I used to live in L.A. area 1987 to 2003 I saw the Tate house in 1991 before it was torn down in 1994 and also visited former Spahn Ranch location near Chatsworth, read several books and saw many movies about Manson family. Recently there is a Lifetime movie called Manson’s Lost Girls that is excellent and Eden Brolin plays Susan in this movie. Sadly Susan Atkins died in prison of brain cancer in 2009 and I saw tv coverage of this. If prison officials in 1967 would have let Manson stay in prison rather than be released, Manson did not want to leave prison, none of these horrible murders would have happened and Atkins life would have been much different and she probably would not have been in prison for 40 years. This book almost made me cry. I strongly recommend it.

Mark R England

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Reader Comments:

“I’ve read this. Amazing transformation of her life.”

Jennifer, from Facebook

“So many different stories from one person”

Kathy, from Facebook

“Bought the paperback when I was a like a teenager out of high school. Really believing in a God.. Leaving god a red rose. Rose disappeared. Only part I remember.. Found the hardback with the original dust cover a few weeks back at GOODWILL SAVAGE for .25 cents. Wanting to read it again, I read THE KILLING OF SHARON TATE AND HELTER SKELTER all during my youth. Just remember thinking she never believed in herself ..and I felt the same way. Think her illusion of God and finding him (MANSON) was her downfall. Mental Illness and religion run together. She has left this world.. Brain tumor.. Still unloved I believe.. So sad!!”

Jeddielynn, from Facebook

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