Sunday, May 23, 2010

A Book Review: The Other Side: A Teen's Guide to Ghost Hunting and the Paranormal

At the Virginia City Paranormal Conference back in March, I had the pleasure of listening to Dave Schrader speak. Dave  is an experienced paranormal investigator, author and the host of "Darkness Radio". His talk was informative, Immensely entertaining and revelant to all aspects of the paranormal field, If you ever have the opportunity to hear Dave speak, do so. I was so impressed by the common sense advice he gave, that I bought his book: "The Other Side: A Teen's Guide to Ghost Hunting and the Paranormal" for Mariah.

This book was co-authored by Parick Burns and Marley Gibson.

Mariah has been hounding me to take her on an investigation, something I have been hesitant to do because of her age. However, she has been listening to me talk about my experiences, reads my blog, and watches the usual ghosthunting programs on a regular basis. I have taken her on a few ghost tours hoping that would placate her, but she is adamant about going on a true investigation. I had been looking for easy to read information on how to proceed with paranormal investigation, so this book came at an opportune time. 

I read it before handing it over to Mariah -not saying that I'm not a trusting person, it's just, that,...well..., I'm not a trusting person. Not when it comes to my child. I'm glad I did, because this book is very well put together, has great advice, emphasizes safety and responsibity, and is easy to read.

This book does a great job at pointing out the pitfalls of believing the stuff out there in TV Land. We all know (at least I hope we all know), that ghosthunting shows don't show the most important stuff about ghost hunting. TV gives the impression that ghost hunting is glamorous, and one can become rich and famous doing it. This book tells it like it is; ghosthunting can be long and tedious work, and for most people, a hobby-not a career. I like that the book encourages teens to find an adult to accompany them on their investigations and always stay with a partner or group.

Other topics the book covers: How to set up an investigation team, the equipment and how to use it, the technical jargon used by paranormal enthusiasts, where to find spirits, safety issues, and more safety issues.

The authors make good use of humor to deliver the information, but do not downplay the seriousness of the subject matter. I enjoyed reading this book, as did Mariah. I would recommend this to anyone with teenagers wanting to explore the paranormal.

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