Ghostly Tales of Route 66 combines in one volume the true tales told author Connie (Corcoran) Wilson in a drive across the Mother Road, from Chicago to California. Connie has spoken about Route 66 at the St. Louis Old Chain of Rocks Bridge celebration (and elsewhere) on several occasions. The stories in Volume III, tracing the highway's path from Arizona to California, were named winners of an E-Book Award (travel category) and a Silver Feather award from IWPA (Illinois Women's Press Association). Volume III is currently in the the running for an IPPY (Independent Press Award) to be announced May 23, 2011. The e-book contains the stories, minus pictures, most of them told the author by residents along the 2,800 miles of Route 66. (Originally, most stories were contained within Vols. II and III of Ghostly Tales of Route 66 from Quixote Press, available in paper format there with photos (Nikon D90) in those 3 paperback volumes and also on the book's website.) The Fort El Reno ghost tour, which Connie and her husband took on a cold November day in 2009, comprise many of the stories, but other haunted tales are told, including that of the Riordan Mansion, the Weatherford Hotel the Museum Club and the Suicide Bridge of Pasadena, California. The final Volume of the Ghostly Tales of Route 66 trilogy (www.GhostlyTalesofRoute66.com) follows the adventures of 4 young travelers ("Four from Flagstaff.") These 4 college-aged students, 2 boys and 2 girls, may go adventuring again, chasing the elusive ghosts found elsewhere in the United States, but, after you read of their adventures, you'll wonder if they'll dare. The stories will both enlighten and frighten you as you become informed of the many Ghostly Tales of Route 66, and you can use it as a guide to your own travels along this iconic highway. (www.ConnieCWilson.com)
Connie Corcoran Wilson has published 10 books since 2003. "Hellfire & Damnation" (www.HellfireandDamnationtheBook.com) came out in February, 2010. Her three volumes of true ghost stories of Route 66 (Ghostly Tales of Route 66, www.GhostlyTalesofRoute66.com) are out from Quixote and in E-book format from Quad City Press. Her first book ("Training the Teacher As A Champion") was published by PLS Bookstores in 1989. Her sci fi novel "Out of Time" was published by Lachesis in 2008 and the screenplay written based on the book was a winner in a "Writer's Digest" competition. Her 2 humor collections are "Both Sides Now" (2003) and "Laughing through Life" (2011). Her illustrated children's book, "The Christmas Cats in Silly Hats" was released at Christmas in 2011. "Hellfire and Damnation II" was released July 28, 2012 in E-book format and in paperback shortly after (The Merry Blacksmith Press.) Her nonfiction book showcasing many of the movie reviews written for the Quad City Times between 1970 and 1979 made up the bulk of the book, along with 76 photos, major cast and interactive trivia. "The Color of Evil," a novel that is the first in a trilogy about a young boy with paranormal abilities, was released in 2012. "Red Is for Rage," the second book in the trilogy, will be released in January, 2013. Connie has been writing for pay since age 10 and taught writing at 6 IA/IL colleges. She is a member of AWP (American Writing Program), MWA (Midwest Writers' Association), MWC (Midwest Writing Center), HWA (Horror Writers Association), ITW (International ThrillerWriters) and IWPA (Illinois Women's Press Association.) Her books have won E-Lit, Pinnacle, NABE and Silver Feather awards and the 400,000 member blog Associated Content named her its Content producer of the year (for politics) in 2008. Since then, she has been named Midwest Writing Center Writer of the Year (2010) and won the Chicago chapter of IWPA Silver Feather award on June 6, 2012.
When I review a book, I try not to tear it apart, but this one left much to be desired.
Facts and info were frequently repeated (at least once, to the point it was driving me nuts), & when they weren't being repeated they were added in at points (sometimes unnecessarily) that threw off the rhythm of the stories. Addresses were often mentioned, along with at least a few phone numbers, & I feel that adding a location guide (Address, number, etc if it's someplace that is open to the public) at the back of the book might be a good idea since the author obviously wants us, the readers, to know where these places are. Plus, at intervals, it sounded like obnoxious advertisements.
Another thing is that this is more history and stories than actual ghost stories. Admittedly, I was expecting something more in the style of Dan Asfar (Ghost Stories of the Old West as an example), but each story was pretty much a fairly short back story (and even those left out details I would have liked followed up on since certain things were mentioned, & irritatingly, I was left hanging) with a paragraph at the end or a sentence here and there about the supposed hauntings. In other words: minimal details about the actual hauntings in a book that is supposed to be about ghost stories!!
Overall, the entire book is a bit of a mess, & the writing needs work. None of the stories drew me in, & I frequently found my mind drifting while I was reading it. It got to the point where I considered not finishing the entire thing, but not finishing a book is a pet peeve of mine so I just bit the bullet.
This is a wonderful collection of American folklore, horror and general ghost stories that has been noted across the great USA. A look at the not so good things that happen after midnight when the lights are low, with more than a bump in the night. Loved it, now you need to read it too.