Would You Believe It?
Has anything mysterious ever happened to you?
Experiences of this kind are more common than you think. And they happen to people you’d least expect, even notable scientists and skeptics.
This collection features personal stories and experiences of the mysterious, as told by Banachek, Susan Blackmore, Joe Nickell, Eugenie Scott, Chris French, Ken Feder, George Hrab, Brian Regal, Steve Cuno, Ray Hyman, and many others, with a foreword by James Randi and an afterword by James Alcock.
These are tales about a wide range of extraordinary experiences, including ghost and UFO sightings, alien abduction, Bigfoot encounters, faith healing, séances, superstitions, coincidences, demonic possession, out-of-body-experiences, past lives, episodes of missing time and one case where time stood still.
You will read about a poltergeist in a bakery, a genius baby, a haunted concert hall, a stone carving that vanishes and reappears mysteriously, a one-time palm reader, and a former Mormon missionary who once believed he healed a woman of a brain tumor.
Sometimes the authors have explanations for their strange experiences.
Sometimes they don’t.
Whether you believe or not, sit back and enjoy reading this collection of mysterious tales from people you’d least expect…
Lots of people have had mysterious personal experiences, like seeing ghosts or UFOs. First class skeptic, Karen Stollznow, compiled this collection of captivating tales about seemingly strange yet human experiences. The truth is in them somewhere; it’s up to us to find it.
Elizabeth F. Loftus, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor, University of California, Irvine, and author of Eyewitness Testimony.
We all need a little magic in our lives but can we tell the difference between magic and lies?
Gil Godsend is the world’s greatest psychic medium.
Claudia Cox thinks he’s the world’s biggest fraud.
A professional skeptic, Claudia spent many years trying to expose Gil, but no one believed that the charismatic and handsome psychic could be a con artist. They’d rather believe that Claudia has sour grapes because she and Gil were once lovers. Unable to reveal him to be a fake, she moves on with her life and founds Suspicious Minds, a detective agency that catches cheating spouses. Years later, a few of Gil’s disgruntled female clients come out of the woodwork with shocking stories to tell and beg for her help. Claudia convinces these grieving widows that Gil is using magic tricks to give the appearance that he’s a psychic medium and that he can’t really talk to the dead. They want revenge. With the help of famous mentalist Banachek, Claudia masterminds plans to catch Gil in the act of cheating but each sting fails dismally. Gil comes out smelling like roses while Claudia looks like a fool.
Will Claudia ever expose Gil as a charlatan? Maybe he really is psychic. Or is something more sinister going on behind the scenes?
“A brilliant and riveting look into the journey of deception and how we psychologically accept deceit. A story that will keep you on edge of your seat yet educate you in the process. I want more and so will you.”
Banachek, the world’s leading mindreader
Can a bump on the head cause someone to speak with a different accent? Can animals, aliens, and objects talk? Can we communicate with gods, demons, and the dead? From ancient curses carved on tablets to modern-day affirmations, supernatural language is used in an attempt to predict the future, diagnose and cure disease, attract good luck, repel bad luck, and to charm and curse.
Language Myths, Mysteries and Magic explores a wide range of weird language-related phenomena, including blasphemy, Bigfoot language, hypnosis, handwriting analysis, chain letters, spells, spirit writing, and hidden satanic messages.
We take a look at some bizarre real-life cases, including the story of a modern English woman who suddenly began speaking in an ancient Egyptian dialect. We hear about a song that is so depressing it is said to drive people to commit suicide, and the belief that if you fall asleep on a book you can absorb its contents without having to read it. This book is a curio shop full of colourful superstitions, folklore, and legends about language.
“Language, with its uncanny ability to transmit ideas from mind to mind, has always seemed to have magical powers. Karen Stollznow ably and engagingly debunks the nonsense and superstitions, and in doing so enhances, rather than diminishes, our appreciation of this wondrous human ability.”
Steven Pinker, Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard University
“Language Myths, Mysteries and Magic could not be more timely. Here the accomplished linguist, Karen Stollznow, persuasively and forcefully dramatizes how language has many real world powers that might seem mysterious, as when a brain injury causes someone to switch from one language to another. But readers will soon grasp that while language does have power, it isn’t particularly magical or mysterious. This engaging, one-of a kind, book deserves very wide readership.”
Elizabeth Loftus, Distinguished Professor, University of California, Irvine
God Bless America
God Bless America lifts the veil on strange and unusual religious beliefs and practices in the modern-day United States. Do Satanists really sacrifice babies? Do exorcisms involve swearing and spinning heads? Are the Amish allowed to drive cars and use computers?
Offering a close look at snake handling, new age spirituality, Santeria spells, and satanic rituals, this book offers more than mere armchair research. It takes you to an exorcism, a Charismatic church and a Fundamentalist Mormon polygamist compound. You will sit among the beards and bonnets in a Mennonite church, hear the sounds of silence at a Quaker meeting, and listen to L. Ron Hubbard’s sci-fi stories told as sermons during a Scientology service. From the Amish to Voodoo, the beliefs and practices explored in this book may be unorthodox, and often dangerous, but they are always fascinating. Some of them are dying out, while others are gaining popularity with a modern audience, but all offer insight into the past, present and future of religion in the United States.
“America was founded in a religious tolerance which was later enshrined in the First Amendment of the Constitution. This set up a breeding ground for a motley riffraff of cults and weird beliefs. Karen Stollznow ventured intrepidly into this “Here be Dragons” territory and her book parades specimens and trophies for our amazement, described with lively good humour and analysed with a sympathetic intelligence. One of the commonest questions I am asked is what makes America so religious. Karen Stollznow’s book will become an essential resource for answering it.”
“The chapter on Scientology is fantastic. It is very specifically detailed with a clear breakdown on the belief system, various programs and abuses. This is deadly concise and makes an incredibly clear and compelling case for the utter absurdity of the church. (Though I’d more of ME in it!).”
Jamie DeWolf, great-grandson of L. Ron Hubbard
Some locations have long-held reputations of being strange or haunted. Haunting America visits some of these classic places that haunt America.
Alcatraz prison was closed decades ago, although it is believed that some ghostly prisoners never left the island. The Lemp Mansion was the home of the beer baron family thought to be the victims of a curse that drove several members to commit suicide. The Myrtles Plantation is said to be the site of ten murders and at least twelve ghosts. Waverly Hills Sanatorium was a tuberculosis hospital during the epidemic of the twentieth century, and is reportedly the most haunted place in the country. All of these places fight for the title of “most haunted” in America.
Join author Karen Stollznow as she hits the road to investigate America’s most haunted places. From Coral Castle to the Winchester Mystery House, she tells the folklore and then reveals the truth behind the ghost stories.
“Haunting America is an excellent selection from the myriad of myths, swindles, frauds, theories and just plain dumb ideas that our species has managed to conjure up.”
The Australian Book of Atheism
The Australian Book of Atheism is the first collection to explore atheism from an Australian viewpoint.
Bringing together essays from the nation’s pre-eminent atheist, rationalist, humanist, and skeptical thinkers, this collection is the first to explore atheism from an Australian perspective. With a historical overview of Australian atheism, this compilation canvasses a range of opinions on religion and secularism in tones variably comedic, sincere, enlightened, and journalistic. Discussing topics ranging from politics and fundamentalism to euthanasia and abortion, this book is a diverse and entertaining collection of thoughts on a world without God.
‘Is intelligent design credible? Should we have prayers in Parliament, and can atheism ever be a meaningful belief system, or is it just the absence of such belief? These are weighty issues, and they are commendably addressed in this authoritative collection.’