Tag Archives: literature

Recent books to land on my doorstep…

In the last month or so I’ve been busy jotting down titles of books that people have recommended. I’ve got several books already on my “to read” shelf, but these are the latest books to arrive on my doorstep. I haven’t been able to read as heavily as I would prefer lately, so trying to figure out the next few books to read will be a tough decision! Have you read any of these? Do you have other recommendations? 

 

This is what I’m currently reading. I very much enjoy Michelle’s books. She’s smart and informed on many topics. I think this is kind of her follow-up book to her The Ghost Hunter’s Survival Guide, which I’ve recommended to many people, including a few homeowners who have contact me for help or advice. If you have a chance to listen to one of her interviews on a Jim Harold podcast, you should. I could listen to Michelle Belanger all day!

 When I went to see Chip Coffey this fall in St. Louis, I sat by a lovely woman who asked the exact same question that I wanted to ask. There were a few other interesting synchronicities between us that evening as well. Her question was if Chip recommended any books for people who were interested in learning about and developing their intuitive or psychic abilities. Without hesitating, he mentioned a few books by Echo Bodine, and after she wrote the information down, I promptly stole her pen and did the same. I’m pretty sure this was one of the books he mentioned.

 

I really enjoyed seeing Chip Coffey, but I was embarrassed that I hadn’t read the book before the event. I’m going to get on that real soon. For more information, see my 10 important reasons to go see Chip Coffey at a “Coffey Talk” near you!

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This book was recommended by someone in the blog world. I will probably wait until next fall to read this one. 

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I’ve been interested in the early spiritualism movement for a while now, but this will be my first book that specifically covers the spiritualist community of Lily Dale. 

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I honestly don’t remember what led me to this purchase, but there aren’t many books on the topic of the Ouija, so I ordered it. The only other book on the topic that I’ve read to date is Ouija Gone Wild by Rosemary Ellen Guiley. 

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After seeing and reviewing The Conjuring, and after reading the first two books of Andrea Perron’s trilogy that tells the real life story, I wanted to see what some of the other “Warren files” were about. 

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This one will be another treat for next fall, but I’m excited already. 

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You might also like: 

Vintage: A Ghost Story (for the gay teen in your life) (Big Séance)

Vintage: A Ghost Story (for the gay teen in your life) (Big Séance)

Messenger Between Worlds: True Stories from a Psychic Medium (Big Séance)

Messenger Between Worlds: True Stories from a Psychic Medium (Big Séance)

Haunted Summer Reading Part One (Big Séance)

Haunted Summer Reading Part One (Big Séance)

Remote Viewing and an Unstructured Trip through my Mind (Big Séance)

Remote Viewing and an Unstructured Trip through my Mind (Big Séance)


Messenger Between Worlds: True Stories from a Psychic Medium

I’m not exactly sure why I find books by mediums so fascinating. Actually, that’s not true. I admire mediums… and as someone who is obsessed with learning about spirit communication and the afterlife, I’m envious of their ability to reach out to the Other Side, often helping souls, both living and deceased, at the same time. Sometimes when I read a string of books that are so serious or about paranormal research or something heavy, I just end up needing to put whatever I’m reading down. I end up breaking my rule, which is to never start a new book when there’s one that still needs to be finished. And it’s like a breath of fresh air. Messenger Between Worlds: True Stories from a Psychic Medium by Kristy Robinett was my most recent breath of fresh air. 

About five months ago I discussed Kristy Robinett here on the blog after hearing her interview on a podcast. I found that just listening to her was a comforting experience. She is so very genuine, she has a beautiful personality, and she has some fascinating stories. Her book was teased in the interview at that time, but I had to wait months since it was released only a few weeks ago. It was well worth the wait.

From the back of the book: 

At the age of three, Kristy Robinett predicted her grandmother’s death. When she was eight, the spirit of her deceased grandfather helped her escape from a would-be kidnapper. This captivating, powerful memoir is filled with unforgettable scenes: spot-on predictions, countless spirit visits at home and school, menacing paranormal activity, and Kristy’s first meeting with two spirit guides who became her constant allies. Born into a strict religious family, Kristy believed she was cursed and hid her  psychic abilities for many years. Over time, she learned to use her talent to do good in the world, and now she has decided to share her incredible story. Follow Kristy’s emotional journey through a difficult childhood, stormy marriages, conflict with faith, job loss, and illness—and the  hard-won lessons that opened her heart to true love and acceptance of her unique gift.

My emotions took a few turns while following Kristy’s journey, and I think most readers can relate to many of the struggles. Throughout the first half of the book, I found myself frustrated that not only was she often not treated kindly, but not accepted for who she was and the reluctant gift that she was given. I think that’s why for a long time she couldn’t find herself. But it’s easy to cheer her on. Haven’t we all had those “what am I SUPPOSED TO BE when I grow up” moments? I’m 35 and I’m still having them. I think we all want to land on the right track. Some of us don’t know we’re on the wrong track, and some of us know but we’re not entirely sure what train to hop and where it’s going… and how to pay for the ticket… and what will be waiting for us when we get to that mysterious destination, anyway? Well I found myself smiling and truly happy for her as she took a giant risk and bravely jumped onto the right track for the rest of her journey… and because she’s so young, there’s a lot of track left, with plenty of stories yet to tell. Okay, enough trains. But seriously, I look forward to reading about the next part of the journey.

Yes, the book is about the medium author herself, but if you’re wanting the stories of spirit communication in her readings, of helping to solve cold cases, of the conversations with spirit guides, don’t worry. If you’re looking for validation from the various messages she gets, it’s here. Those beautiful moments, the heartfelt stories, the changed lives… those gems can be found throughout as well.

I truly loved it! Thanks for being brave enough to share you life with us, Kristy!

If you haven’t heard or seen Kristy Robinett, I wanted to give you the chance to see and hear her below. The first is video of a recent radio show appearance that I enjoyed. Below that is Kristy’s appearance from this last October on the Ricki Lake Show. Kristy has several other videos online. For more info, visit KristyRobinett.com.

 

 

 

Related Articles:

The Conjuring Movie Review

The Conjuring Movie Review

Running with the Bulls

Running with the Bulls

Death Perception

Death Perception

 

 


Running with the Bulls…

Recently I shared a list of books for summer reading. From that list, Running with the Bulls was the one that I was the most excited to jump into… and as soon as it landed on my doorstep, that is just what I did.

The book did not disappoint, but it wasn’t really what I was expecting it to be either. Two weeks after 9/11, Joseph R. Lani, now a retired NYPD detective sergeant, was assigned to help command the Staten Island landfill where all of the debris from ground zero was taken. Detectives and federal agents sifted through every pile of rubble, searching for human remains, personal items, the black boxes from the planes, and anything relevant to the investigation. It was a giant crime scene. It was also where Mr. Lani suffered a heart attack due to stress, forcing him to retire. According the author, the combination of some powerful post 9/ll experiences and his heart attack resulted in him developing mediumistic abilities. 

You’d think that this book would focus on the landfill and the author’s experiences around the time of 9/11, but the great majority of the book is really a memoir of his career leading up to his current experiences as a medium. Honestly, I would normally be the last person to get into a book about the NYPD or crime, etc., but I found myself really interested in his next career move, the move to the next precinct, the promotions, the embarrassing stories, and the amazing (and some terrifying) stories of bravery! It gives you a secret peek into the mind of the heroes that protect us every day, and I developed a renewed appreciation for these men and women.   

At 199 pages, Running with the Bulls is an easy read with short chapters (Since I am a fan of breaking up my reading throughout the day, I LOVE short chapters.) and 39 photos throughout the book. And actually, this brings me to the only frustration I had with this book. Several of the photos supposedly contain supernatural elements, and some of them I either just don’t see or am skeptical of what he claims is there… but looking at an actual photo as opposed to a black and white reprint in a book could be a whole different experience, I’m sure. Weird pictures aside, I really loved the book, and I think Joseph R. Lani would be a fun person to hang out with and learn from!

The author can be contacted by visiting his website at theghostcop.com

 

Related:

Messages: Signs, Visits, and Premonitions from Loved Ones Lost on 9/11


Five Books for Summer 2013…

I do not have any of these books yet, but I eagerly wait for them to land on my doorstep. The chances of me actually getting through all of these this summer are slim, but as I mentioned in my last post, my “to be read” shelf is getting low. I would like to use this post to also ask for recommendations of books that are similar to the ones below, perhaps a few on spirit communication specifically. 

Anyway, enjoy the list. Perhaps we can do an Oprah style book club together, huh? Ha! We’ll see. 

All book descriptions are from each book’s Amazon page, which can be found by clicking on the cover photos below. 

 

We Don’t Die: A Skeptic’s Discovery of Life After Death

I first heard about this book by Sandra Champlain while reading one of the latest newsletters from The Association TransCommunication (ATransC). As someone who is learning to deal with and understand my skeptic side, I felt this should definitely be on my list. 

If You Realized That You Could Never Die, How Would You Live Your Life?
Every second, 4 human beings are born and every 1.8 seconds, one dies. As natural as death is, dying is the most common fear that we all share. With every loss comes the most painful emotion called grief, which can cause break ups of relationships, depression and even suicide. Over 100 million suffer from grief daily, although it is a subject not often spoken of, until now.
The fear of dying led Sandra Champlain on a 15 year journey to find evidence of the afterlife. Courageously, she now shares her personal story from skeptic to believer, along with proof that our deceased loved ones can still see, hear and communicate with us. Sandra also shares new information on the how our brains function during the grieving process and provides tools that ease pain and saves lives. It is now your time to find out who you REALLY are and discover for yourself that “We Don’t Die”.
Discover…
* Amazing Evidence That You Will Survive Physical Death
* Your Deceased Loved Ones Are Still With You
* The Purpose Of Your Life And Why You Are Here
* How To Ease The Pain Caused By Grief
* ‘Remote Viewing’ And Experience Who You Really Are
* How To Create A Powerful Life and Produce Extraordinary Results

 

Running with the Bulls: The Road to Fresh Kills – A Journey into the Paranormal

This book by Joseph Lani is one that I quickly took note of when it was mentioned in a podcast interview of Mark Phillips, who is the creator and executive producer of the Biography Channel’s My Ghost Story. I’m really excited about it, in fact, it’ll probably be the first book from this list that I read!

Joseph Lani grew up on the south shore of Staten Island (NY), where a happy childhood was shattered by a tragedy that tears his family apart forever.

After trying to start a new life in Florida, Lani returned to New York and soon found himself a member of New York’s Finest. Then his life and the lives of so many others were changed forever on September 11, 2001.

After the initial horrors ended, Lani was assigned to the command center at the Fresh Kills Landfill, whose mission was to sift through the debris of the entire World Trade Center. Under the stress of the job, Lani suffers a massive heart attack and subsequent near death experience. He miraculously recovers to a new life fully enveloped in the spirit world.

In this fast-paced memoir in which we get to ”run with the bulls,” Joseph Lani recounts his many harrowing and humorous experiences on the job. Lani entertains his readers with an insider’s account of a very real world most of us only think we know from television.

 

Messenger Between Worlds: True Stories from a Psychic Medium

I mentioned this book by medium Kristy Robinett in a previous blog. I’m just waiting for it to be released on July 8, 2013. 

Since the age of three, spirits have come to me in the dead of night, telling me of their woes. Kristy Robinett shares the dramatic, touching, and terrifying moments from her extraordinary life as a psychic medium.

This captivating, powerful memoir is filled with unforgettable scenes: spot-on predictions, countless spirit visits at home and school, menacing paranormal activity, rescue from abduction thanks to her loving grandfather in spirit, and Kristy’s first meeting with two spirit guides who become her constant allies. Follow her emotional journey though a difficult childhood, stormy marriages, conflict with faith, job loss, and illness—and the hard-won lessons that opened her heart to true love and acceptance of her unique gift.

 

The Djinn Connection: The Hidden Links Between Djinn, Shadow People, ETs, Nephilim, Archons, Reptilians and Other Entities

I have to be honest about this one. I’m not super excited about this book. The “djinn” is a popular topic with paranormal folks now days, and frankly I don’t get it. As of right now, I put the djinn in the same boat as black eyed kids, fairies, and other mythical creatures that I think sometimes make us in the paranormal world seem crazy, or not serious. But maybe that’s because I haven’t come across a black eyed kid. Maybe I wouldn’t understand the djinn because I never had the opportunity to interview one in an EVP session. So before I criticize it I figure I need to do more homework on it. Plus I think Rosemary Ellen Guiley is spectacular!  

Could a single entity be responsible for a multitude of our paranormal experiences throughout history? Drawing upon her decades of extensive research in all facets of the paranormal, Rosemary Ellen Guiley makes a compelling case that our interactions with spirits, extraterrestrials, shadow figures, ancient aliens, demi-gods and human-creature hybrids all involve the mysterious Djinn. The Djinn are little-known in the West beyond folk tales of genies in lamps and bottles, but they are real and active in our world. They are a race of powerful, masterful shape-shifters who exist in a dimension parallel to ours. Humans have had millennia of intense engagements with the Djinn, who disguise themselves in the forms of many different entities in order to keep themselves and their true motives hidden. Some of their motives are not in our best interests. The Djinn are not the only beings interacting with humans, but their giant shadow falls across every part of our paranormal and entity contact experiences, including bedroom invasions, alien abductions, and genetics manipulators from other worlds. The Djinn are significant force in the destiny of human beings. In The Djinn Connection, Guiley explains what we need to know and how we should respond.

 

The Uninvited: The True Story of the Union Screaming House

Don’t get this one confused with about 852 other books and movies with the same title, this supposed true story is by Steven LaChance. If I remember correctly, this book about the haunting of a home not far from me simply popped up as a recommendation on Amazon. It has some interesting reviews on the Amazon page

What kind of evil lives at the Union Screaming House?

In this true and terrifying firsthand account, Steven LaChance reveals how he and his three children were driven from their Union, Missouri, home by demonic attackers. 

LaChance chronicles how the house’s relentless supernatural predators infest those around them. He consults paranormal investigators, psychics, and priests, but the demonic attacks—screams, growls, putrid odors, invisible shoves, bites, and other physical violations—only grow worse. The entities clearly demonstrate their wrath and power: killing family pets, sexually assaulting individuals, even causing two people to be institutionalized.

The demons’ next target is the current homeowner, Helen. When the entities take possession and urge Helen toward murder and madness, LaChance must engage in a hair-raising battle for her soul.

Selected as one of the Best Books of 2008 by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

 

Related Post:

Books for Summer Reading (2012)

 


Death Perception’s Kennet Singleton: A Psychic Medium

I am honored to present this guest post by the amazing Lee Allen Howard!

 

Are the paranormal abilities of psychics and mediums gifts possessed by only a chosen few? I discuss this topic at Building the Bridge. But it’s a question I also consider in my latest supernatural crime novel, DEATH PERCEPTION.

The notion that certain people are born with these supernormal abilities persists in books, movies, and television shows. The popular TV series Medium, starring Patricia Arquette, portrayed protagonist Allison DuBois as someone whose gifts invade her life and overtake her. Dreams haunt her, and dead people show up when she least expects it, forcing her to deal with their demands.

The spiritual abilities of some people may be so powerful that they overrun waking consciousness. Such individuals are described as “natural mediums.” Natural mediums are rare in real life. The majority of individuals who work as psychics and mediums had only an inkling of a gift in the beginning, but studied and trained to develop it, like I did. Kennet Singleton, the young protagonist in DEATH PERCEPTION, is a bit of both.

Like some psychics, Kennet has suffered a troublesome childhood marred by paternal abuse, making him hypersensitive to changes in mood energy. He’s also encountered an old Pentecostal prophetess, who lays her hands on him, prophesies his future, and imparts a gift to him.

His psychic abilities crop up at age 19 when he toasts marshmallows over the ashes of someone he’s just cremated. Later, after a near-death experience, his mediumistic abilities flower, enabling him to see and hear the dead—and solve murders.

Kennet has come by his abilities both naturally through his past and supernaturally through the ministry of the prophetess. After an accidental consciousness-expanding event, his prescient hunches develop dramatically into something useful in avenging victimized spirits.

My personal study of Spiritualism and mediumship furnished the knowledge I needed to write about such abilities with authority. Having experienced psychic phenomena myself, I was able to add realism to Kennet’s otherwordly perceptions. (For more about this, see “Visitation from the Summerland” at Building the Bridge.)

DEATH PERCEPTION is the story of Kennet Singleton, crematory operator at a local funeral home. The crimes of the past pave the way for him to discover and accept the unique gifts he must use to help others—good inspiration for any kind of story. Especially if it includes ghosts!

DEATH PERCEPTION is available in trade paperback, Kindle (.mobi) and Nook (.epub) at http://leeallenhoward.com/death-perception/.

BIO           

Lee Allen Howard writes horror, dark fantasy, and supernatural crime. He’s been a professional writer and editor of both fiction and nonfiction since 1985. His publications include The Sixth Seed, Desperate Spirits, Night Monsters, “Mama Said,” “Stray,” and DEATH PERCEPTION, available in various formats at http://leeallenhoward.com.

You can keep in touch with Lee on his Facebook author page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lee-Allen-Howard-author/117844011639457. Follow him on Twitter @LeeAllenHoward

 


Proof of Heaven…

A while back I finished a book that has been extremely popular in recent months. Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon’s Journey into the Afterlife by Eben Alexander, M.D. tells the author’s story of his journey into the afterlife, or an atypical Near Death Experience (or NDE), while his physical body was in a coma. Before the experience, this bow tie wearing doctor, like most of his kind, was not a believer in the NDE phenomenon. It is a fascinating and miraculous true story. Once again, I have to tell you that often the subject of a book, or in this case a book written by a neurosurgeon, will intimidate me into assuming I’ll have a hard time comprehending or really “getting” it. That wasn’t the case for this book at all. Other than some medical explanations and terminology that gave me cinnamon bun eyes, I very much “got” this book. 

 

Not only was Eben interviewed by Oprah, but the story really got the discussion started when it was featured in Newsweek back in October. Recently I blogged about some annoying comments made when the article was discussed on Real Time with Bill Maher. I love the show, but the fact that several members of the panel, including Bill himself, treated this phenomena and Dr. Alexander’s experience as a joke really bummed me. Unfortunately, you can find more of the same kind of criticism by skeptics making fun of the story online. I won’t link those here. 

 

If you’re into NDE research or enjoy reading about the phenomena, you should definitely check this out and add it to your library. My guess is that many of you already have. 

If you’re interested, I’ll leave you with an interview of the author by Bob Olson on the AfterlifeTVChannel.

 


True Haunting: Reads Like Fiction… But it’s Not!

Today I want to tell you about a great book I just finished! True Haunting by Edwin F. Becker is the true story of the incredible experiences that Edwin and his young family experienced in Chicago in 1970. In a time before there were thousands of paranormal groups and Ghost Hunters on TV, this family had to make quite a few brave decisions to survive. It ended up being the first haunting and exorcism to be reported on and covered on the news. I shared the old video footage in a previous post, but I’ll include it at the end of this one as well. I’ve read that the house had been empty for quite some time, recently. But I also found a photo online of a clearly remodeled home… and it looked fairly current. One can only imagine what, if anything, still goes on there.

How often have you or anyone you know asked any one of these questions?

  • Can a ghost move an object? 
  • Do they hear us?
  • Can they hurt us?
  • Could they be demonic?
  • Should we be giving them attention?
  • Is it okay to show them off?
  • Can we get rid of them?
  • Should we move?

Most of these questions are still being asked today… and the “paranormal field”, for lack of a better term, has come a long way since 1970. Or has it? For sure, finding access to information, the ability to find and communicate with people having similar experiences, and finding help is a lot easier to accomplish today, but there are still individuals and families out there going through similar experiences. I know, because I get contacted often. They’ll sometimes ask for advice, they’ll often seem embarrassed, but most of the time they just need someone to listen… to tell them they’re not crazy. And that’s a good thing, because do I always know what to say? Of course not! But I sure try… and sometimes it’s just about getting them hooked up with the right resource.

Most of the paranormal books that I read tend to be more technical in nature. I try to learn as much as I can. This book reads like fiction… but it’s not! I clearly got into this book, because I read it in considerably less time than most of my recent reads. I have come to the realization that I can learn a lot from books like this, and there are a lot of them out there. It very much reminded me of Graves End: A True Ghost Story by Elaine Mercado. You’ll find it on my recommended reading list.

So check this book out! I heard in an interview that Edwin documented all of these experiences a decade ago and meant for it to be just for the family to have. Apparently there was never a goal of getting it published, until a loved one convinced him just recently. It was published in 2011. Also, the family’s story was featured on the SyFy show, Paranormal Witness. According to Ed, the producers predictably embellished some of their story, but for the most part did an “amazing job”. You can find the complete Paranormal Witness episode, named “The Tenants”, HERE

And as promised, here is the 1970 NBC footage.

 

Related: 

True Haunting (the author’s interview on Jim Harold’s Paranormal Podcast)

I Still Watch Ghost Hunters… So What? (BigSéance.com)


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