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The Ghost Club - A History, by Peter Underwood

Publication Details: Limbury Press. ISBN 978-0-9565228-1-8
Publish Date: October, 2010

From the publisher’s website: The Ghost Club is the oldest society in the world dedicated to the exploration of the unknown and there can be no better guide to the history of this pioneering organisation than writer and broadcaster Peter Underwood, President from 1960 - 1993. Here his unique archives and knowledge have combined to produce a definitive compendium of this remarkable club covering the many and varied incarnations, pioneers, members and leading lights as well as its many and diverse lectures and investigations.

 Peter Underwood is the recognised elder statesman of psychical research and author of over 40 books on ghosts and the paranormal including the pioneering Gazetteer of British Ghosts, The Encyclopaedia of the Supernatural, The Ghost Hunters' Guide and Haunted Gardens.

Review by Tom Ruffles

The Jacobites and the Supernatural, by Geoff Holder

Publication Details: Amberley Publishing. ISBN 9781848685888
Publish Date: October, 2010

From the publisher’s website: The Jacobites and the Supernatural offers a whole new perspective on the well-known Jacobite period and also allows the reader to explore the battlefields and other sites of the period in a completely new way. Here are tales of witchcraft, spirits, psychic powers, portents, prodigies, magical talismans and potent curses. Bonnie Prince Charlie practices the healing magic of ‘touching’ for the King’s Evil and ‘impresses’ his good looks onto an unborn child. A queen attributes her pregnancy to a saint. Rocks split at the moment Culloden is lost. We meet angels, demons, fairies, guardian Black Dogs and other otherworldly beings. The cast of human characters includes John Graham of Claverhouse, ‘Bonnie Dundee’, said to have sold his soul to the Devil and then been killed by a silver bullet; the ‘Galloping Earl’ of Dilston whose phantom is said to still ride through his Northumbrian estate; and the gentle Lord President Forbes, who had a vision of the slaughter at Culloden months before the Jacobite dream was extinguished on that terrible day.
 
As well as setting the occult beliefs in the religious, political and military contexts of the Jacobite Risings of 1689, 1715, 1719 and 1745, this book gives a site-by-site guide to all the battlefields and buildings associated with the Jacobites and the supernatural. The battles of Culloden, Sheriffmuir, Killiecrankie, Dunkeld, Glenshiel, Falkirk and Prestonpans are well represented, but there are also allegedly haunted castles and hotels, plus everything from an English vicarage (home to a Jacobite poltergeist) to a Highland loch and a Hebridean beach. Sites across Scotland and England are comprehensively described, with a full history of their ‘supernatural’ events and descriptions of on-site access and facilities.

Review by Tom Ruffles

Wake Up, by Jonas Elrod and Chloe Crespi (a documentary film)

Publication Details: Beyond Words
Publish Date: September, 2010

From the filmmakers’ website: Jonas Elrod was leading an ordinary life until he woke up one day to a totally new reality. He suddenly could see and hear angels, demons, auras and ghosts.

The documentary movie WAKE UP follows this fascinating story of an average guy who inexplicably developed the ability to access other dimensions. Physicians gave him a clean bill of health and were unable to provide an explanation. What was it? Why was it happening to him? One thing was certain for this 36-year old man – life as he had known it would never be the same.

With his loving but skeptical girlfriend by his side, Jonas crisscrosses the country as he searches for answers and delves deeper into this thrilling world of the phenomenal and spiritual. Along the way, he encounters an amazing group of religious teachers, scientists, mystics and spiritual healers who help him piece together this intricate puzzle.

The film shows how all of us can search inward for our own peace and happiness while contributing towards a positive shift in global consciousness. WAKE UP is a call to consciousness to everyone who sees it; an invitation to accept that there is more to this life than meets the eye.

Review by Tom Ruffles

Cambridge Ghosts, by Robert Halliday and Alan Murdie

Publication Details: Arima Publishing. ISBN-13: 978-1845494537
Publish Date: September, 2010

From the publisher’s website: Cambridge University is the most haunted university in the world: ghosts have been reported here and in the surrounding countryside from the 13th century up to the present day. Cambridge Ghosts is a comprehensive guide to the phantoms and paranormal phenomena that have been witnessed and experienced in the colleges of the university, the ancient houses of the city, the streets and open spaces, and some surprisingly modern buildings. It also introduces the reader to writers of classic ghost stories who have been inspired by the historic university. Fully researched by the authors, Cambridge Ghosts is the most detailed work ever published on the city's spectral population and is guaranteed to fascinate the reader.

Review by Tom Ruffles

Debating Psychic Experience: Human Potential or Human Illusion?, edited by Stanley Krippner and Harris L. Friedman

Publication Details: Praeger. ISBN-13: 978-0-313-39261-0
Publish Date: September, 2010

From the publisher’s website: Despite ongoing and repeated attempts to prove or disprove the existence of parapsychological events, there are still no conclusive findings—and certainly no consensus across the worldwide community of scholars, scientists, and proponents of psychic phenomena. Still, there is no shortage of information about this fascinating topic to allow everyone to draw their own conclusions.

This book has been expressly written to make each chapter and topic accessible to a general audience, despite containing a vast amount of theoretical material. The book is organized into two parts: in the first section, proponents of the validity of parapsychological data and critics who reject that validity state their respective positions. In the second part, each group responds to each others' statements in the form of a debate. Other experts from the United States as well as from Great Britain and Australia provide overviews and conclusions. Features includes contributions from 14 scholars weighing in as advocates, counteradvocates, or contributors; 20 examples of original artwork by Dierdre Luzwick, a world-class surrealistic artist; the bibliography contains a reference list at the end of each contributor's section; a glossary of key terms used in the book is supplied.

Electronic Voices: Contact with Another Dimension?, by Anabela Cardoso

Publication Details: O Books. ISBN-13: 978-1846943638
Publish Date: September, 2010

From the publisher’s website: This is the story of a normal woman who experienced the impossible: objective contacts with another dimension through loud and clear voices received by electronic means during Instrumental Transcommunication (ITC) experiments.

Dr Cardoso, a senior diplomat, describes the astounding experiences that transformed her life since she started ITC research in 1997. She presents extracts of conversations with her deceased loved ones and other personalities who insisted that they live in another world.

The level of agreement between communications received by the author and concepts, even words, recorded by other experimenters from Jurgenson and Raudive to contemporary operators, constitutes compelling evidence of the reality of the next world that awaits us all. As communicators from Timestream told Dr Cardoso: The dead pass through here, you pass through here!.

Electronic Voices breaks new ground in the literature providing details of audio contacts, recorded under controlled conditions, with beings in an evolved dimension, which they describe as another space, beyond time. This evolved dimension of life corresponds to an evolved state of consciousness in the cosmic evolutionary sequence.

Medium: A Yeoman of England, by Ronald Hearn

Publication Details: Book Guild Publishing. ISBN 9781846245169
Publish Date: September, 2010
Cover of Medium: A Yeoman of England

From the publisher’s website: In this candid, thought-provoking autobiography the gifted and world-renowned medium Ronald Hearn gives a moving account of his extraordinary life. Beginning with his childhood in a working-class family in wartime London, he traces his development through National Service in India to a mundane job in a town hall and on to the startling, life-changing discovery of his psychic abilities and his decision to launch himself as a full-time psychic. Hearn’s mediumship has taken him all over the world and has brought him into contact with a wide array of people – from ‘ordinary’ men and women who have lost loved ones to colourful celebrities, like Margaret Rutherford, with a penchant for spiritualism. Hearn’s astonishing gifts – most notably seen in his innovative practice of taped messages – have won him many admirers in the psychic community and his sensitive, subtle readings have given comfort and hope to many, as well as providing invaluable evidence of survival after death. What shines through above all, however, is Hearn’s indomitable and humane spirit, his passion for life and his unquenchable desire to reach out to another world.

Review by Guy Lyon Playfair.

Science and the Near-Death Experience: How Consciousness Survives Death, by Chris Carter

Publication Details: Inner Traditions International. ISBN-13: 978-1-59477-356-3
Publish Date: September, 2010

From the publisher’s website: Science and the Near-Death Experience explains why near-death experiences (NDEs) offer evidence of an afterlife and discredits the psychological and physiological explanations for them; challenges materialist arguments against consciousness surviving death; examines ancient and modern accounts of NDEs from around the world, including China, India, and many from tribal societies such as the Native American and the Maori

Predating all organized religion, the belief in an afterlife is fundamental to the human experience and dates back at least to the Neanderthals. By the mid-19th century, however, spurred by the progress of science, many people began to question the existence of an afterlife, and the doctrine of materialism--which believes that consciousness is a creation of the brain--began to spread. Now, armed with scientific evidence, Chris Carter challenges materialist arguments against consciousness surviving death and shows how near-death experiences (NDEs) may truly provide a glimpse of an awaiting afterlife.

Using evidence from scientific studies, quantum mechanics, and consciousness research, Carter reveals how consciousness does not depend on the brain and may, in fact, survive the death of our bodies. Examining ancient and modern accounts of NDEs from around the world, including China, India, and tribal societies such as the Native American and the Maori, he explains how NDEs provide evidence of consciousness surviving the death of our bodies. He looks at the many psychological and physiological explanations for NDEs raised by skeptics--such as stress, birth memories, or oxygen starvation--and clearly shows why each of them fails to truly explain the NDE. Exploring the similarities between NDEs and visions experienced during actual death and the intersection of physics and consciousness, Carter uncovers the truth about mind, matter, and life after death.

Where Science and Magic Meet, by Serena Roney-Dougal

Publication Details: Green Magic. ISBN-13: 978-0956188618
Publish Date: September, 2010

From the publisher’s website: The root of the word science is knowledge; the root of the word magic is wisdom. Serena blends these two spheres of human experience and shows how the latest scientific research and parapsychological study interact. The quantum view of matter is overturning the traditional world-view and the fantastic discoveries being made bring new insights into the connections between all forms of magic and science. We share the exciting results of her research on the scientific validation of psychic phenomena. Drawing on her ground-breaking work on the pineal gland - something called the third eye - and the phenomenon of second sight, she shows that the greatest implication of psychic phenomena is that each of us is potentially aware of the natural magic of our earth and of everything in the universe.

Paranormal Case Files of Great Britain Volume 1, by Malcolm Robinson

Publication Details: Healings of Atlantis. ISBN: 978-1-907126-06-2
Publish Date: August, 2010

From the publisher’s website: Ghosts and hauntings… these words convey to some individuals an in-depth fear of the paranormal. The chilling thought that deceased persons have in some cases returned from the grave to once again appear, if only in shadowy forms, and to fill us with fear of their grimly presences, is a fact that few seriously minded persons can now dismiss.

Strange tales of ghosts and hauntings can be found from all corners of the earth and records show that accounts of ghostly presences go well back into antiquity. As a researcher on the paranormal, Malcolm takes from his files incredible tales of ghosts and paranormal events. He also shares with us his own ghostly encounters of which he has had more than his fair share. This book covers some amazing cases from haunted council houses to haunted castles. Malcolm brings forward personal accounts from people who have had first hand dealings with ghosts. Their testimonies will shock and in a court of law these would be hard to dismiss.

In this, his second book, Malcolm clearly shows that evidence can be found of ghosts that will make even the biggest of sceptics sit up and take notice. Britain is known worldwide for its ghostly tales and this book contributes to the growing testimony that shows that whatever we may think ghosts are, there is no denying that, come what may, they are real - as the cases from frightened witnesses in this book clearly show. A stunning and frightening look at some of Britain’s ghostly case files. Read on if you dare.

Paranormal Technology: Understanding the Science of Ghost Hunting, by David M. Rountree

Publication Details: iUniverse. ISBN-13: 978-1450253567
Publish Date: August, 2010

From the publisher’s website: Paranormal Technology is the first book to provide a scientific method for ghost hunting, which includes in-depth explanations of what the collected data mean. Paranormal Technology offers new techniques, answers questions, and provides experiments, which will help bridge the gap between the paranormal and science. Written in everyday language, it offers keen insights into the nature of paranormal phenomena, the protocols required for collecting evidence that will stand up to scientific scrutiny, and the possible theories that may explain the source of "Ghosts". Currently employed test equipment is examined and proper use is covered in great detail.  Paranormal Technology is an indispensable aid to any scientific researcher or ghost hunting group, whether you are a beginner, or with many years of experience. This book is not a means to an end, but rather, an invitation to a fresh beginning.

Spectres of the Self: Thinking about Ghosts and Ghost-Seeing in England, 1750–1920, by Shane McCorristine

Publication Details: Cambridge University Press. ISBN: 9780521747967 (p/b) ISBN: 9780521767989 (h/b)
Publish Date: July, 2010
Cover of Spectres of the Self: Thinking about Ghosts and Ghost-Seeing in England, 1750–1920

From the publisher’s website: Spectres of the Self is a fascinating study of the rich cultures surrounding the experience of seeing ghosts in England from the Reformation to the twentieth century. Shane McCorristine examines a vast range of primary and secondary sources, showing how ghosts, apparitions, and hallucinations were imagined, experienced, and debated from the pages of fiction to the case reports of the Society for Psychical Research. By analysing a broad range of themes from telepathy and ghost-hunting to the notion of dreaming while awake and the question of why ghosts wore clothes, Dr McCorristine reveals the sheer variety of ideas of ghost seeing in English society and culture. He shows how the issue of ghosts remained dynamic despite the advance of science and secularism and argues that the ghost ultimately represented a spectre of the self, a symbol of the psychological hauntedness of modern experience.
 
 Incorporates literature, psychiatry and popular belief, presenting a variety of ideas about ghost-seeing • Compares contexts from Germany, France and America, providing an international understanding of the topic • Examines the culture of ghost-seeing rather than the validity of ghost-belief
 
Contents: Introduction; Part I. The Dreams of the Ghost-Seers: 1. The haunted mind, 1750–1850; 2. Seeing is believing?: Ghost-seeing and hallucinatory experience; Part II. A Science of the Soul: 3. Ghost-hunting in the Society for Psychical Research; 4. Phantasms of the living and the dead; 5. The concept of hallucination in late-Victorian psychology; Epilogue: towards 1920; Appendix; Bibliography.

Further information is to be found on the publisher's website: Spectres of the Self.

Review by Tom Ruffles