Written heavily from a parapsychology viewpoint and "psi" dependent. I found the writing style choppy and while I think I'm reasonably intelligent (an...moreWritten heavily from a parapsychology viewpoint and "psi" dependent. I found the writing style choppy and while I think I'm reasonably intelligent (and have read other paranormal non-fiction books), sometimes I was like "what?" It might have been better as a longer book - more space and time devoted to explaining all the concepts and their interactions.(less)
Fun, quick read with bite-sized chapters written in the style of Ripley's. The cover art and lettering is strongly reminiscent of the old pulp fiction...moreFun, quick read with bite-sized chapters written in the style of Ripley's. The cover art and lettering is strongly reminiscent of the old pulp fiction, and just as fun as the inside.
While I am a somewhat ardent viewer of paranormal television (and reader of para non-fiction), I'm not necessarily a believer... but I like to keep an open mind. Just in case*. ;)
*Besides, it's a great place for writing ideas! (less)
Ghosts hunters gives comprehensive explanations of "hauntings", equipment, history of paranormal "research" (which I particularly liked) and photograp...moreGhosts hunters gives comprehensive explanations of "hauntings", equipment, history of paranormal "research" (which I particularly liked) and photographic evidence (which garnered it's own chapter). It also looked at possession (with "The exorcist"-influence as an example) and brief discussions of orbs (positive) and other "electrical" research devices - emf, evp's, video (which were not so positive, but still balanced). That all consistuted the first half of the book, which I liked, for the most part (and bumped the book up from 2 stars to 3). However, I found the second half of the book (which consisted of 5 case studies) frustrating. Each study contained a history of the events, the investigator and conclusions reached by the authors, both separately and together. Each time, it was (her) 'oh, I feel something, but maybe not...let's hold a seance" and (him) 'well, they said that, but it was probably this". It's the sensitive vs. the sceptic and there was no happy medium (pun intended)!
I had two small specific issues with the book, mainly with what I seen as contradictions in the text. The first was between p. 8 ("A ghost hunter (who by the way prefers to be called a paranormal investigator or ghost researcher)...") and p. 194 ("Ghost hunting...is a popular term that is often confused with paranormal investigation, but paranormal investigation, although similar in some ways, is subtly different from ghost hunting.") Um, excuse me? Wasn't it implied on page 8 that they're the same thing? The second quibble I had was between p. 275 ("It is incorrectly accepted amongst some groups that spirits are a form of energy and that EMF meters detect that low-level of so-called ghostly energy accurately." italics mine) and p. 271 ("[Energy] is the essence of all existence, although it takes countless forms. You are energy, this book you are reading is energy, the chair or floor you are sitting on is energy.") While this is a more subtle, it still struct me as a contradiction, especially as the text issues were spaced so close together. As far as I understand, they pointed out that everything was energy, even the unseen (p. 272). But then they backtract and state that EMF's (which measure energy) are useless because ghosts are not energy. I'm confused!
Overall, I liked Ghost hunters, especially the informational content, but it seemed that the authors prefered photographic evidence amongst all others and their methods were a little different than what I'm used to.
This is my third time attempting to start this book...maybe that's a hint? ;)
I had some slight "technical" issues with the book... like the author's (...moreThis is my third time attempting to start this book...maybe that's a hint? ;)
I had some slight "technical" issues with the book... like the author's (as another reviewer pointed out) self-importance. It's not everywhere, but it's evident in certain spots (the last paragraph on page 12 struck me as particularly so). There also tends to be repeats (enough to be noticeable) of "Later, we'll explore this...." or "Let me explain..." or similar sentences. And there's no contractions where there should be! If you don't want to jar your reader out of the book (even a non-fiction one), there are better ways to use the English language.
As for the content, the theory sections were interesting and though I can't say I subscribe to everything he's talking about, some of it is food for thought. The second half was better, especially to someone that has some introduction to the subject. (I'm a frequent watcher of G.H., G.H.I., and Destination Truth ;)
In the end, it was very much like reading a school textbook - part theory (the first section on various types of hauntings and the theories behind them) and part practical (the second section about equipment, with a miniature section on the actual process). My biggest complaint? It read very much like a dry school textbook.(less)
"If you've read this far, the good news is that you're not dead yet, but the bad news is you're dying, and you have been dying since the day you were...more"If you've read this far, the good news is that you're not dead yet, but the bad news is you're dying, and you have been dying since the day you were born." (Preface, p.11). Gee, such an "optimistic" way to start a book... ;)
Belanger hits all the major "hotspots" of the paranormal community (folklore, possession, animal spirits, psychic abilities, hunting, locations) per chapter, in a brief, concise, very readable style, intersperced with plenty of eyewitness accounts (in their own words).(less)