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Lore of the Ghost: The Origins of the Most Famous Ghost Stories Throughout the World Paperback – September 1, 2008
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Top Customer Reviews
The book is described as an "investigation into human belief in the supernatural and its affect on how ghosts are interpreted and recorded."
The author, Brian Haughton, is an archaeologist and a researcher, and his expertise shows. He's documented the history of stories such as:
* the Wild Hunt
* phantom "white ladies"
* vanishing hitchhikers
* screaming skulls
* phantom vehicles and haunted roads
His research is thrilling if you're a history buff.
For example, he not only translates the often-misunderstood terms "doppelganger" as doublewalker or doublegoer, he also tells the story of when Queen Elizabeth I's doppelganger was seen in her castle home.
If you consider yourself a "ghost hunting geek," this book is a must-read.
Brian Haughton knows his stuff. Over the past few years he has gained a reputation as one of the strongest researcher in the field when it comes to odd people, weird places, and the folklore that lives just this side of unexplainable. With his past work he has always made an effort to keep one foot in legitimate history while stretching the possible past with his work in older cultures and text. His new book, Lore of the Ghost, focuses his skills at looking into several of the haunted motifs that form the tales we hear in old ghost stories and that help to mold the true hauntings we hear about from down the street.
Lore of the Ghost suffers from being written by the smartest man in the room. While his previous work has always taken advantage of his knowledge, it becomes a hindrance in Lore. The book looks to explore the origins of many of these ghost stories, but does little to get to heart of them while offering only retellings of them throughout the years. No origins are found. This would be allowable (most legends are impossible to trace to their true origins by their very nature) if Haughton offered some explanations as to why these legends are spread or how they tell us about ourselves. The book offers neither.
What the reader is left with is a collection of legends with no direction. There are still few out there in the publishing world who can tell these stories as well as the author, but he spends too much time jumping from old tale to old tale. Any of his chapters could be an entire book by itself, and with subjects like phantom hitchhikers and black dogs, the reader wants to know more. He does not stay in one long enough to examine it fully before he is on to the next variation.Read more ›