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Will Storr vs. The Supernatural: One Man's Search for the Truth About Ghosts
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Will Storr vs. The Supernatural: One Man's Search for the Truth About Ghosts

3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  462 ratings  ·  79 reviews
Will Storr has done some seriously bizarre and otherworldly things over the course of his career as a journalist. But even spending an entire day with Ozzy Osbourne wasn't as frightening as when he agreed to follow Philadelphia "demonologist" Lou Gentile on his appointed rounds. Will Storr never believed in ghosts—but his healthy skepticism couldn't explain the strange lig...more
Paperback, 322 pages
Published September 5th 2006 by William Morrow Paperbacks (first published January 19th 2006)
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Christopher
Books that make you simultaneously laugh out loud and afraid to turn of the lights should be banned.
James
this book, british journalist will storr's examination of ghosts and the trappings that surround them, is an entertaining and oft-times spooky travelogue of one man's belief in the supernatural.

what started as a jokey assignment for a magazine (essentially poking fun at "american eccentric" and demonologist lou gentile), actually makes storr question his previously-held sceptic's beliefs. he then takes us with him from one interview to another, discussing his findings and experiences along the w...more
theghostwriter
a british journalist investigates the supernatural in this hilarious and completely entertaining read.

at one point he describes a few ghosthunters he is interviewing as being in their "late thirties and significantly out of shape, and one of them has upsetting, medieval teeth."

i COULD NOT put it down and was totally laughing out loud constantly.
Will Byrnes
Storr is a young journalist who decides that he wants to look first hand at various things ghostly. He begins with a skeptical eye, becomes mostly a believer after seeing some very strange things, then heads back to disbelief after meeting with a psychiatrist, then heads back somewhere in between. He is led to ponder the nature of souls. The book is written in a breezy manner, taking the subject matter seriously but not so much so as to become a harsh debunker. He has a nice sense of humor and a...more
Wayne Williams
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Andi
I have what some might call an unhealthy interest in ghosts. I have been on ghost walks, read lots of ghost stories, and even stayed the night once at Edgar Allan Poe’s grave in the hopes of seeing a ghost. So when this book arrived, I got very excited. Then, I put it away. It fell into the TBR pile and didn’t reappear for months.

But the truth is, it’s good I didn’t read this book this winter when I might have - I would have been too scared to sit in my house alone on dark evenings. Somehow when...more
Pamela
Will Storr vs The Supernatural is a book unlike any other I have ever read. It is the completely unashamed account of a skeptic journalist’s mental journey as he seeks out both believers and skeptics alike in his quest to discover a truth behind supernatural occurrences. It is a book that challenges everything that both skeptics and believers might think of ghosts, demons and the afterlife.

Will Storr begins the book a firm skeptic when he travels to interview self-proclaimed “demonologist”, Lou...more
Thom Foolery
This book was more or less an impulse buy at the local public library's friends of the library two-for-one sale. Honestly I don't know what to think about ghosts and whether or not they exist in some meaningful sense, but I enjoy hearing about them, watching TV shows about them, and reading about them, particularly if the presentation is good. So when I saw this eye-catching cover and saw that it was subtitled "one man's search for the truth about ghosts," I thought, "This definitely looks like...more
Spoonbridge
Well, there goes my hard earned confidence that ghostly phenomena has been all but explained away! English journalist Will Storr, a "recovering Catholic" convinced that the afterlife is pure fantasy, encounters frightening, unexplainable events that shake his former skepticism to the core while following a batty American demonologist for a fluff piece. Thoroughly freaked out, Storr embarks an almost obsessive quest across the UK and beyond to uncover as much as he can about the reality of ghosts...more
Adam
Kind of a stupid book about a journalist trying to find the truth behind ghosts. The book succeeds however in creeping you out with stories of ghosts doing their thing. The author is too "look-at-these-crazy-ghost-hunters" and often goes into personal musings about the afterlife and his own spirituality. Screw that. I want to read about ghosts haunting the crap out of some poor old people in Ireland. The informative part is when you get to learn about different types of ghosts and all the many k...more
Kate
Nov 25, 2008 Kate rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: ghost nuts
Shelves: paranormal, humor, culture
Fans of famous British haunted houses will be pleased to find some behind-the-scenes looks at such spots as Michelham Priory, The First and Last Inn, and perhaps most exciting of all, the Enfield poltergiest case, which is the equivalent of the Amittyville Horror across the pond. However, there is no great insight into these amazing paranormal cases and Storr doesn't really succeed in the sarcastically humorous tone he clearly strives for. But it did hold my interest through the end.
Alex Bledsoe
This was a hoot. There's some philosophical meat to it as well, but the joy comes from Storr's observations of the people invested in the reality of the supernatural. It's rare to read a book on this topic and come away with quotable lines, but they're here, all right. A real delight.
Kashmir White
Of all the books I have read on the paranormal (and seriously, there have probably been hundreds), this one is my absolute favorite. I can give no higher recommendation than that. I love it. Will Storr is an excellent writer and I plan to read more of his work.
Adam
Very British but worth it for those looking for a humorous and at times quite scary exploration of one man's encounter with the 'supernatural'. Hard to describe, but if you like ghosts, you'll probably like this.
Alexandra
Skeptical, hilarious, and filled with wit, conversation, and some incidents that might not be totally explainable, this is a book for the skeptical believer in us all. Will Storr sets out to learn the truth about ghosts and the supernatural, and encounters many creative, crazy characters along the way, including an engineer-by-day-demonologist-by-night; a group of British ghost hunters; a pair of nutters who are convinced satanists run wild in the British hinterlands; the Vatican's own exorcist;...more
Rose Wolf
A hopeful skeptic takes a journey to discover the truth about ghosts. At times creepy and often hilarious, this is a highly enjoyable read for anyone with a questioning mind.
Dark Recesses
Will Storr vs. The Supernatural
By Will Storr
Harper (U.S. edition)
Trade paper $13.95


What happens when a confirmed skeptic takes on the supernatural world?
Well, in the real world, not a hell of a lot. The skeptic will, in most cases, remain utterly skeptical, always finding some logical reason by which to relegate the supernatural into something mundanely prosaic.
But if that skeptic happens to be internationally famous journalist Will Storr, known for his irreverence and straight shooting style of...more
Robin Conley
I really enjoyed this book. Storr's approach for trying to discover the truth was really well rounded and I liked that he tries to make his experiences as wide as he can by talking to everyone from a psychiatrist to a philosopher to a druid. It's really interesting to see the people he met and to read the things that happened to him. I also liked that he is up front about his own beliefs and that the book isn't about what is or isn't real, it's about his understanding of what is or isn't. He mak...more
Michael Mcclelland
Surprisingly little ego displayed by an author confident (or famous?) enough to pop his name in the title of this entertaining, balanced and readable investigation on paranormal activity. More than a collection of spooky anecdotes, a passing parade of ghost "specialists" (name yourself whatever -ologist you want to be), philosophers, scientists, media stars, religious types, witches, cranks, kooks and muggles even, present evidence and explanation for and against the supernatural and, by extensi...more
Hollowspine
I was expecting a laughable tale of a skeptical journalist encountering spiritualist kooks, demonologists and mediums, and revealing them all to be charlatans, mentalists, and the mentally disturbed. Will Storr, however, is a much better journalist than I would have been. He tried to look at the world of the supernatural through a lense uncolored by disbelief. If the person he was interviewing seemed to genuinely believe in the phenomenon they were talking about or that the experience they had c...more
Carolyn Alfieri
As an avid fan of all things ghostly, I was quite surprised to find this book on the bottom shelf in the "new age" section at the South Huntington public library. Normally, the choice there is pretty slim considering I am NOT a fan of Sylvia Browne or astrology, but they did right by me this time and it was worth paying the $8.00 in late fees I owed just to check this book out.
This book is in the same vein as Kathrine Ramsland's, "Ghost" that came out a few years back. Both authors were journali...more
Selina
This book is so up my alley. Storr is a skeptical atheist who's curious about people who really, really believe in the supernatural. The book begins with him following a bona fide ghost hunter, and leads him through a series of events that are by turns eerie or ridiculous.

I've reread this book twice, and enjoyed it every time. Highly recommended for anyone with any interest in ghosts, whether it's as a Halloween novelty, or as a genuine belief.
Stefanie
I really loved the style, sensibility, and subject matter of this book. I wish, in fact, that more people would approach tough problems in the way the author approached the supernatural: with an open mind and a sense of humor. He's critical (but gentle enough as to not overly lampoon anyone) of people who go into situations where they might encounter something strange with their minds already made up about what the source of the anamoly is going to be; he's equally critical of those who utterly...more
Jose Hernandez
Aug 07, 2014 Jose Hernandez rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Jose by: Mark Divis
"We're in the dark about death and the purpose of existence. And an awful lot of people, it seems, are scared of the dark."

Will Storr vs The Supernatural is both humorous and a bit horrifying. You'll be left with more questions than answers, but that's a good thing, and the characters Will Storr meets through his journey are what truly makes this a good read.
Thom Brannan
Wow. I went into this book looking for some snide remarks and "it was obviously this or that" mentality, but Will Storr took his job seriously. I was drawn in from the get-go, when he details his first travels with one of the many slightly-left-of-center characters he meets in his investigations.

Those people are frightening in their depth of belief. I think that's all I can say about the selection of ghost-chasers, demonologists and exorcists Will Storr spent time with.

I'm glad the book is a v...more
Tom Fuchs
The thing that caught me most about this book was how well-written it was: you really feel the peaks and valleys of his belief and cynicism throughout and are more convinced when he is and less so when he isn't. Personally I would still remain unconvinced in the face of the evidence presented in the book, although he makes a compelling argument when pointing out that hauntings and their descriptions have stayed remarkably similar over a very wide span of time. However, being in a place where eve...more
LeeAnn Heringer
I was very disappointed in this book. The jacket blurb made it sound like a journalist objectively looking at the whole Ghost Inc. industry. But it wasn't that, it was a writer having a lark who in the first chapter has an experience that he can't explain and which he firmly believes is evidence of ghosts and haunting and demonic possession. So the rest of the book is him trying to explain and define what happened in the first chapter. There is no objectivity. And the best he can come up with 25...more
Pearl Yusuf
I love a good Ghosthunting show as much as anyone. There are also ones I hate and make me ashamed for giving them an audience. This book is really well written. Storr is a journalist determined to "get to the bottom" of all this potential nonsense. I found his process to flow logically which includes acknowledging any psychological baggage he finds in his interviewees as well as himself. He was open-minded but not gullible. The stories he discovers and researches are intriguing and the people he...more
Carol
Jun 30, 2014 Carol added it
If you don't believe in ghosts, you probably won't after reading this but it's definitely a great read and does give you food for thought on ghosts and other things that go bump in the night.
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Will Storr is a long-form journalist, novelist and reportage photographer. His features have appeared in The Guardian Weekend, The Telegraph Magazine, The Times Magazine, The Observer Magazine, The Sunday Times Style and GQ, and he is a contributing editor at Esquire. He has reported from the refugee camps of Africa, the war-torn departments of rural Colombia and the remote Aboriginal communities...more
More about Will Storr...
Heretics: Adventures With The Enemies Of Science The Unpersuadables: Adventures with the Enemies of Science The Hunger and the Howling of Killian Lone: The Secret Ingredient of Unforgettable Food Is Suffering American Ego Bad Blood: The Mysterious Life and Brutal Death of Alexander Litvinenko (MATTER)

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