Monday, February 22, 2010

There's Ghosts in Them Thar Hills...

I'll confess I haven't been reading much lately. As a writer that's probably a very poor decision on my part. Yet occasionally, I do take the time for reading. And given that I'm slowly getting myself back in writing mode and preparing to start a new book (no, not the sequel at this point), it would be wise for me to get back into reading as well. Still, I can be picky with literature. And my limited bookshelf reflects that.

In any event, I did manage to pick up a new book this week and was pleasantly surprised with it. It's the first book by paranormal investigator Heather Woodward, founder of PISA Paranormal, called Ghosts of Central Arizona. The best part (and to me, a sign of a truly enjoyable book) is that I caught myself laughing out loud at moments. Over a ghost book. Who knew?

Heather has a very good head on her shoulders, especially for someone who considers herself a medium. That's not to say that all psychics can be flakes, but so many have an air of arrogance and tendency to be totally unrealistic. They know all. Everything is paranormal. So to read the writing of someone who has the ability to be skeptical and rational is refreshing, especially from someone with some form of psi ability. And the idea that she can find humor in both her own life and the paranormal realm is a wonderful thing as well (especially since those of you who read this blog probably have noticed I take very little too seriously).

Her book teaches ghost hunting basics while it explores the various haunted places in a few cities in the state. Not only does she talk about Mile High Grill & Inn (which I mentioned in a Queer Paranormal Road Trip post a while back), but onward to Sedona (known for its vortexes and its infamy as a "metaphysical mecca") and the Superstition Mountains (a deadly place with legendary gold).

Quite simply, it's an amusing book from an amusing person, both grounded and interesting. And with the overall not-so-serious feel of the writing, certainly something that anyone who likes this blog should take a look at...

1 comment:

Daniel said...

At one point in this book, the author states that ghost hunting is mostly waiting in the dark, not knowing when, how, or even if a spirit will put in an appearance. That’s a good metaphor for the book itself—so much time is spent on ghost hunting techniques, background information, and stream-of-consciousness accounts of the author’s every minute, waking or sleeping, on the trail of hauntings that I began to wonder if the spooks would make it into the book before the Index.
When the ghosts did show up, they were a mixed bag, with all the good stuff happening “off stage.” The author—a so called psychic and long-time paranormal investigator (she claims)—promises to personally investigate the legends of haunting, but we learn more about her thoughts on exercise (only while shopping..WTF?), Catholicism (very offensive), and Nicholas Cage (What a waste of reading..I wanted ghost stories, instead she rambled on about her love for this poor actor) than about her experiences with ghosts. In fact, for all but a couple of haunted locations, all we get are third-or-fourth-hand rumors—the author never even visits them. Heather should leave the ghosthunting to the experts and she should crawl back under the rock that she came from. Her poor attempt at writing is a complete waste of time. In a nutshell, there’s more fluff here than substance. And to think, someone actually wanted her to write a second book. Someone at her publishing company really needs their head examined.