A History of Ghosts and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Qty:1
  • List Price: $25.99
  • Save: $6.69 (26%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 4 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Add to Cart
Want it tomorrow, April 25? Order within and choose One-Day Shipping at checkout. Details
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Used: Like New | Details
Condition: Used: Like New
Comment: The cover shows no damage or marks! May have a remainder mark. Fast Shipping - Safe and Secure Bubble Mailer!
Add to Cart
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

A History of Ghosts: The True Story of Séances, Mediums, Ghosts, and Ghostbusters Hardcover


See all 4 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from Collectible from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$19.30
$2.61 $0.01 $12.00

Frequently Bought Together

A History of Ghosts: The True Story of Séances, Mediums, Ghosts, and Ghostbusters + The Haunted: A Social History of Ghosts
Price for both: $38.36

Buy the selected items together
  • The Haunted: A Social History of Ghosts $19.06

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

100 M&T
100 Mysteries & Thrillers to Read in a Lifetime
Looking for something good to read? Browse our picks for 100 Mysteries & Thrillers to Read in a Lifetime, brought to you by the Amazon Book Editors.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 264 pages
  • Publisher: Rodale Books; First Edition edition (September 29, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1605298751
  • ISBN-13: 978-1605298757
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 6.1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #370,104 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Squarely aimed at the fans of Ghostbusters (and just in time for its nascent revival in family rooms, video games and, reportedly, the big screen), this look at the paranormal is written by none other than the father of that blockbuster's co-creator and star, Dan Aykroyd; what fans might not know is that the Aykroyd family's interest in séances, mediums and apparitions was what inspired the hit supernatural comedy. The author's own grandfather was a spiritualist: he believed the human personality survives after bodily death, and practiced regular communication with ghosts-much of which he documented in journals. Aykroyd broadens the discussion with historical figures like Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes, who joined the Society of Psychical Research three weeks after his father's death. He also disarms skeptics with a chapter on the séance as theatrical performance, not much different from a movie, in which the ultimate goal is "the willing suspension of disbelief" in an audience, whom can then be "frightened, amused, touched, moved" by illusions. Less a Ghostbusters also-ran than a knowing, historical origin story, this is a smart consideration of the paranormal and a curious artifact of the Aykroyd legacy.

About the Author

PETER AYKROYD is a retired Government of Canada Senior Executive. He is the author of two previous books, The Anniversary Compulsion and A Sense of Place. He lives on a plot of land 20 miles north of Kingston, Ontario, that has been in the family for 180 years.
ANGELA NARTH is a full-time writer of both fiction and nonfiction with seven books currently in print. She lives on the banks of the mighty Red River a few minutes south of Winnipeg, Manitoba.

More About the Authors

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
5 star
17
4 star
6
3 star
1
2 star
3
1 star
0
See all 27 customer reviews
It has a nice middle insert of photos as well. :)
Blacktoblonde
This is a fascinating personal history as well as a comprehensive examination of Spiritualism, collected and compellingly related by Aykroyd in A History of Ghosts.
Cinemaphile
A very good read for those interested in paranormal research.
R. Krohn

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Javier Ortega on October 13, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Peter Aykroyd (father of actor Dan Aykroyd) has gotten together with writer Angela Narth to produce a very informative yet compact book of the Spiritualist movement that swept across during the Victoria era. Combined with personal stories of childhood memories of when Mr. Aykroyd would sit and watch seances in his family's home, the book takes you back to the precursor of our current paranormal boom, and methodically explains where such interest came from. Written from a skeptical viewpoint (but not close-minded) the book takes you on a historical journey through what appeared to be legit paranormal encounters and the people who claimed to produce these paranormal effects, to their exposure as scam artists and their demise. The book will leave you with a better understanding of the importance of applied logic and skepticism, as well as a better understanding that science cannot explain all claims of the paranormal... [...].

[...].
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
24 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth Raschke on July 19, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I found Ackroyd's history of the spiritualist movement and its seances fairly interesting until I read his endnote attached to a statement about a seance in which Charlotte Bronte was heard, apparently by the author, pronouncing the name of Jane Austen. The endnote reads, "Author Jane Austen, who was Charlotte Bronte's dear friend on earth, seems to have remained a close friend in the next life." In fact, Austen died in 1817 and Bronte was born in 1816, not much time for a friendship to develop. Thereafter, I couldn't help but regard the author's "facts" with a degree of suspicion.
3 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By David M. Baker on March 1, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A great study and reference for research and enjoyment. A lot of work went into this most interesting and enjoyable book. It also explains the history of spiritualism, what mediumship is and the different types of mediums, plus much more.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Bobbananda on April 28, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Mr. Aykroyd did a decent job for a 90-year-old who is going blind. Probably a great job, from that angle. But, the book didn't pull together. Lacked much cohesion. It was really a tribute to his ancestor who was a spiritualist plus a trail of stories about spiritiualism and mediums. Readable, but lacking. Still I salute Peter for his work and attempt.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Masatotaguchi on November 30, 2009
Format: Hardcover
A total delight to read for me it goes much deeper personal accounts and experiences that the book totally brings together captivating me in memories thoughts wonderment and possiblities. Totally recommend reading and buying.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Verbena Reverb on August 9, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Hoping this would be an engrossing spine tingler, I have to say that halfway through the book I became bored. It is mostly about 19th and early 20th century spirit medium hoaxers, i.e., ladies with "stuff" rolling out of their mouths and floating horns. Because that is all fakery one's attention span drifts after a while. Heard it once, you've heard it all...
Unfortunately, the author commingles the fake stuff with what may or may not be real, so there is nothing to get all excited about. You can't pry it apart.
It is interesting to learn, though, that Spiritualists actually consider their beliefs to be a religion. Now that's kind of scary...
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Margie Holland on January 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Heard about this book on Coast to Coast and thought I'd give it a try. I was very pleased with the subject matter and the way it was written. Easy to follow.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
By Uncle Lewis on March 13, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Haven't had the chance to read, read this yet, but it looks better than most of the books on spiritualism out there.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Product Images from Customers

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Search
ARRAY(0x9f02ff0c)

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?