I've read the book twice, cover to cover, and I really believe this book belongs on every library bookshelf in the civilized world, along with the Franz, Harrison, Gruss, Reed, and fifty other books too numerous to name, and the fifty more books coming out that will join them.
Yes, there is a difference in tone between the Franz and the Schnell books, but I make these observations:
1)Schnell was a 'service' man, never a writer like Ray Franz was for forty years or something like that. I don't think it's fair to compare them them like that, or to fault Schnell for a lack of writing skills he never had a chance to develop.
2) There was no XJW community for Schnell like there was for Franz. There might not even have been a Crises of Conscience if not for the William Schnells of the world. Our community was built, 'brick on top of brick' by people beginning with that first group of loyal Bible Students who left the Watchtower in disgust when Rutherford seized it all those years ago. Except for those religious beliefs that he was able to retain after his exit from the Watchtower, you can tell from his writing tone that he was feeling much alone a lot of the time.
3)William Schnell wrote his book much more closely in time to the events therein than Ray Franz did, by at least a year or two. That doesn't seem like much, but I think William Schnell was more 'raw' from his experiences still than Ray Franz was when he wrote his first book.
4) In order to do the things he did for the Watchtower (travel to other countries and start and oversee operations there,colporter work) William Schnell had a much different personality and outlook on life then Ray Franz did. Their unique personalities and perspective on life is revealed very deeply in their respective writings.
When I put together all the experiences of not just the various Watchtower independant chroniclers, but experiences on Simon's, Randy's, AWJRB's, Kent's, Silentlamb's and everyone else's sites too numerous to name,it is an incredible picture of what happens when religious intolerance is allowed to flourish in a community or group of communities. I look over now at my collection of Watchtower literature on my shelves, and it stand in silent witness to religious bigotry and what can happen---ruined lives and destroyed families and communities still trying to deal with the social fallout--for many years to come, no doubt.
William Schnell, you will not be forgotten!!!!
In 1975 a crack team of publishers was sentenced to death by a judicial commiteee. They promptly escaped from the cult and now live life on the run. If you have a problem ... and if you can find them ... maybe you can contact the A--postate Team"