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            Stories to keep you up at night.........                                       

                                             

Hollywood Paranormal Films: Fact & FictionHollywood Paranormal Films: Fact & Fiction by Jim O'Rear

Hollywood Paranormal Films: Fact & Fiction  As most of you, I've seen all the movies included in this book and thought it was going to be a dry rehash of the backstories, be they based at all in fact or complete hoaxes.  Not at all! The author is a talented writer who made each entry interesting.  Even the chapter about The Amityville Horror, with which I am very familiar regarding its being a total fabrication was good. I had thought I'd be skimming or even skipping it, but read the whole entry.  There are 10 chapters/movies which include The Exorcism of Emily Rose, An American Haunting, Amityville Horror, The Entity, Dracula, The Changeling, The Exorcist, The Haunting in Conn., The Mothman Prophecies, and Audrey Rose.  I was very surprised to find that The Changeling was actually written based on events experienced by Russell Hunter, a playwright, when he rented a mansion in Colorado!  This is a very well done, entertaining book.  It has many photos of both scenes and posters of the movies it covers.  In paperback.

In Stone    by Kristel Smart


I rarely read the books about one person's experience living in a haunted house because the few I tried were poorly written and obviously largely exaggerated if not just made up.  I was surprised at how well written this one was, and the author seemed pretty sincere and genuine. If you want to read about someone's firsthand experience that doesn't read like a high school student wrote it, and is actually creepy, this is a good choice. In paperback and e-book.



The Ghost Next Door  by Mark Alan Morris

This is a refreshingly simple and entertaining book of true ghost stories collected by the author from people he knows.  Most of the narrative is in the words of the subject of each tale, so each story has its own "personality."   There are no photos, but I didn't feel a need for them.  The chapters are short, but are to the point and not filled with extraneous history or details just to add pages. The book is short, and I would have liked a few more stories (who doesn't always want more?!) but I would still recommend it.  It's 100 pages of text with several blank pages at the end. Maybe you could use them to record your own spooky encounters!



So, There I Was.... More Confessions of Ghost Hunters   by Troy Taylor & Len Adams

So, There I Was...I liked this book which gives the "behind the scenes" happenings for Troy Taylor and his colleagues who make up the American Ghost Society in Illinois. Taylor and Adams each write their own chapters with their personal anecdotes from their being guides for ghost tours and their investigations.  Written in a relaxed, comfortable manner, it's fun to hear what the "experts" experienced or thought as they pursued their fascination with the paranormal. At times Troy Taylor gets a little TOO into the history and background of sites (there was more information than I wanted/needed to know about the Lemp Mansion and the U.S penal system/Eastern State Penitentiary) but in general I enjoyed this book.  In paperback.

PSIence: How New Discoveries in Quantum Physics and New Science May Explain the Existence of Paranormal Phenomena      by Marie Jones

Don't let the subtitle of this book scare you - it is made very readable and easy to understand by the author.  This is truly the most fascinating book on the paranormal that I have read in ages.  I have long believed that many "unexplainable" phenomena have some scientific basis that we just don't know about yet.  This book opens so many possibilities and new ways to view paranormal phenomena.  I have no background in physics at all and found the basic tenets of quantum physics mind blowing and so intriguing.  One thing I liked about this book is that it does not offer pat explanations for everything, but offers plausible reasons for many events while raising more "hmmm...so then what if...?" questions for me to chew on at the same time.  I would categorize this book as a MUST for anyone seriously interested in the paranormal.  In paperback and e-book.

Green Mountain Ghosts, Ghouls & Unsolved...  by Joseph A. Citro

This book covers all kinds of oddities in Vermont, not just ghosts. It is organized by type of story, with major headings such as: Vermont's Ghostly Gallery, Here Monsters Dwell, Alien Skies, and Lingering Mysteries. I found this book well written, intriguing and fun to read. In 1996 Mr. Citro published another book, Passing Strange which covers all kinds of strangeness throughout New England and was also very entertaining.  In paperback and e-book.





Lighthouse Ghosts : 13 Bona Fide..   by Norma Elizabeth and Bruce Roberts

This book presents well done writeups of 13 haunted lighthouses, from Michigan to the Atlantic Coast down to Florida. Detailed directions and contact info are provided. Excellent photographs accompany each chapter. The authors' love of and respect for lighthouses is apparent and contagious. 144pp.  In paperback.





Haunted Highways: the Spirits of Route 66    by Ellen Robson and Dianne Halicki


If you're even thinking of traveling along Rte. 66, this book is for you. It has (not coincidentally?) 66  listings of spooky stops you can make as you travel. This guide has great maps, both general of the whole Route, and for each state so you have a very good idea of where these sites are. Each ghostly entry is 2-3 pages, with a good photo, description and directions. The book is paperback, 190pp including an index. In paperback.

 

 

Lone Star Spooks: Searching for Ghosts in Texas  by Nate Riddle

Lone Star Spooks: Searching for Ghosts in Texas  Not your typical haunted places entry style book, this is more a physical and intellectual exploration by the author regarding the nature and existence of ghosts.  He has a chapter at the beginning of the book where he interviews a professor of parapsychology, and then a later chapter where he interviews a skeptic.  Both are very interesting and raise questions for the author (and hopefully the reader as well).  While I could have done without the lengthy chapter on an urban legend style local haunting, I liked his account of his stay at the Menger Hotel with his wife and his brother.  It was not just about paranormal experiences, but he recounts much of his stay as if he were talking to you at a barbecue, telling you about the whole trip. One problem I did have with this book is the chapter where he consults a psychic.  He has given her some questions ahead of time, and though she gets no answers correct and gives him "cold reading" guesses that I could have come up with (eg name of a family cat, "I'm getting the word 'scat' in connection with it..."  and never came up with a name close to a real name) Mr. Riddle writes that she had been "unusually accurate."  Okay, I won't get started on this aspect...  Other than that chapter I liked this book for its different style and approach where the author "thinks out loud" about the issues involved in believing or disbelieving in ghosts. In paperback.


Ghost Hunting     by Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson

This book is by the co-founders of TAPS which is the paranormal investigation group featured on SciFi Channel's show "Ghost Hunters."  Jason does most of the writing while at the end of each chapter is a short "Grant's Take."  How TAPS came into existence is covered, as well as many of their earliest investigations before the TV show started.  Even the chapters that cover the investigations seen on the show are interesting to read and revisit. The book moves quickly and has an informal, easy going feel to it.  I do wish there had been more "behind the scenes" stuff but would still recommend this book.  It is in paperback, 273 pages with a photo insert in the center. In paperback and e-book.

         

Pacific Northwest Haunts  by Joe Teeples

If you're looking for a guide to haunted spots where you live or will be visiting, this book is the ideal style - tons of entries with pithy descriptions and lots of photos.  Definitely more of a guidebook than a book to read for creepy narratives it accomplishes its goal very well.  There's also an interesting section at the end that addresses graveyards and iconography of gravestones.  Alaska only gets 3 pages, and Portland OR gets 11 - the book really is for those interested in Seattle or Washington state.  224pp. including tour and web resources and an index. In paperback.


Haunted Travels of Michigan   by Kathleen Tedsen & Beverlee Rydel

 This book is different from the typical ghost books in that it has a web interactive component.  The authors accompanied paranormal investigative groups, wrote about the investigation and then put some photos, video and EVPs on their web site where they can be accessed with a password from the book.  The authors were quite diligent in their research on each site, and go into great detail on a property's history and each investigation as it proceeded.  There are ten sites/chapters, and photos (many of them of the investigators).  An interesting book for those who want to feel what being on an investigation firsthand is like. There are two more volumes by the authors.  In paperback and e-book.


Haunted Missouri: A Ghostly Guide to the Show-Me State's Most Spirited Spots

by Jason Offutt

As the author says in his afterword, he spent a year driving thousands of miles and had a few unexplained experiences and still isn't sure if he believes in ghosts.  This isn't a surprise - his attitude is to be open with some skepticism in a pleasant down to earth way.  The book is written in a manner that feels like the author is talking to you.  He does devote a lot of space to history, and his love of this subject is apparent especially in his section on Civil War sites.




Coast to Coast Ghosts   by Leslie Rule

Organized by type of ghost, Ms. Rule covers a wide breadth of hauntings (including the house she grew up in). Chapters include ghosts of children, animals, schools, the Gold Rush, and watery sites among many others. She visited each place, and each entry conveys her  personal interest.  The writing and photography (which she does herself) are very good and there are interesting sidebars throughout the book. This would be a nice book to curl up with on a gray weekend day.  Paperback and e-book.





Seattle's Market Ghost Stories   by Mercedes Yaeger

This book is as much about the history of Pike Place Market in Seattle as it is about its haunted sites.  The author grew up there and her family has been intricately involved with the Market for decades - that emotional connection runs strongly through this collection.  The descriptions of the hauntings are interesting and strongly set in historical context.  I should note that the author is co-owner of Market Ghost Tours, and if visiting Seattle consider adding it to your activities.    E-book edition.




Haunted Lakes: Great Lakes Ghost...  by Frederick Stonehouse

In this book Stonehouse writes about all sorts of paranormal phenomena of the Great Lakes. After many years of compiling maritime history about the lakes, Stonehouse realized he had amassed many odd tales and set them down in their own volume. He writes about haunted lighthouses, ghostly ships, sea serpents, superstitions and more. This book is very well written, with interesting tales and information about what life was and is like on the lakes.  In paperback.






True Stories and Eerie Legends from America's Most Haunted Neighborhood                 by David Domine

Ghosts of Old Louisville and Phantoms of Old Lousiville were combined into one edition in this book.  It is well written and interesting, about a unique neighborhood.  Old Louisville KY, filled with Victorian structures was destined to fall to developer's bulldozers in the name of modernization when the whole area was made a protected Preservation District that covers several square miles.  Mr. Domine has scouted out many ghosts who remain as well, and has written an entertaining book about his neighborhood which includes his own firsthand experience when he moved there.  After each chapter the author adds some information about a historical site that relates to the episode described, and is also haunted.  Worth reading for the history and  tales.  In paperback and e-book.

 

 Haunted Massachusetts     by Thomas D'Agostino
 


This 160pp book includes photos and an index.  It combines current sites that the author has visited and also recounts local/old legends.  While many of the chapters are very short, the tradeoff is that there are many entries. In paperback.