Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Qty:1
  • List Price: $29.95
  • Save: $2.77 (9%)
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Real-Life X-Files: Invest... has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Good
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
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

Real-Life X-Files: Investigating the Paranormal Hardcover – October 24, 2001

2.9 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$27.18
$8.57 $0.01

The Amazon Book Review
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
$27.18 FREE Shipping. Only 1 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Real-Life X-Files: Investigating the Paranormal
  • +
  • Adventures in Paranormal Investigation
  • +
  • The Science of Ghosts: Searching for Spirits of the Dead
Total price: $58.44
Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Nickell is no armchair skeptic. In order to debunk paranormal claims effectively, he knows it's not enough to make ill-informed pronouncements from a distance. In this collection of articles reprinted from Skeptical Inquirer magazine, Nickell does excellent background research, which he follows up in many cases with on-site investigations of mysteries ranging from crop circles and lake monsters to spiritualist mediums and stigmata. His previous forensic experience as a private investigator is put to good use when he looks into apparent spontaneous human combustion. He tackles the mysterious and elusive treasure of Nova Scotia's Oak Island--the "money pit"--and concludes that it is a natural formation and that Masonic groups may have had a hand in planting some confusing artifacts. Some of his targets are little more than curiosities, such as Magnetic Hill, where cars seemingly roll uphill, or the giant Coleman frog, which is rather obviously a manufactured model. Others seem more worthy of deconstruction, like mysterious faces appearing on rose petals, spirit paintings, and Fox-TV's famous alien autopsy film. George Eberhart
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review

"Nickell does excellent background research, which he follows up in many cases with on-site investigations of mysteries ranging from crop circles and lake monsters to spiritualist mediums and stigmata."―Booklist

"Examines forty-seven paranormal cases, ranging from a supposedly petrified girl buried in eastern Kentucky, to spontaneous human combustion, to UFO visitations, to auras, to stigmata, to haunted houses, to ghostly photos, to police psychics, to communicating with the dead."―Ozarks Mountaineer

"Whoever said that the truth is both stranger and more entertaining than fiction describes this book exactly."―Skeptical Inquirer

"It may not be as fun as being fooled, but it's refreshing to see an experienced professional who has investigated hundreds of alleged paranormal occurrences. . . . A fascinating book."―WTBF

If you buy a new print edition of this book (or purchased one in the past), you can buy the Kindle Edition for FREE. Print edition purchase must be sold by Amazon. Learn more.
For thousands of qualifying books, your past, present, and future print-edition purchases now lets you buy the Kindle edition for $2.99 or less. (Textbooks available for $9.99 or less.)
  • Thousands of books are eligible, including current and former best sellers.
  • Look for the Kindle MatchBook icon on print and Kindle book detail pages of qualifying books. You can also see more Kindle MatchBook titles here or look up all of your Kindle MatchBook titles here.
  • Read the Kindle edition on any Kindle device or with a free Kindle Reading App.
  • Print edition must be purchased new and sold by Amazon.com.
  • Gifting of the Kindle edition at the Kindle MatchBook price is not available.
Learn more about Kindle MatchBook.


New York Times best sellers
Browse the New York Times best sellers in popular categories like Fiction, Nonfiction, Picture Books and more. See more

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: University Press of Kentucky; First Edition edition (October 24, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1567316700
  • ISBN-13: 978-0813122106
  • ASIN: 0813122104
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,348,345 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By William Holmes VINE VOICE on September 1, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Despite the title, readers looking for a book that proves Mulder right and Scully wrong are going to be disappointed. Nickell agrees that "the truth is out there"--he just thinks that it's a lot more mundane than most people realize.
Nickell investigates 47 "mysteries," including the Turin Shroud, spontaneous human combustion, crop circles, the Oak Island treasure, the Flatwoods UFO monster, the Roswell flying saucer crash and an assortment of hauntings, miracles and lake monsters. True believers be warned: Nickell concludes that each of these events can be explained rationally and without resort to space aliens or the supernatural.
Nickell has an agreeable style, although at times it's a bit academic. He doesn't talk down to his readers--he thinks that each mystery is worth investigating carefully and he is clearly having fun with his work. In his own words, "if we steer between the extremes of gullibility and dismissiveness--in other words, if our minds are neither too open nor too closed--we may learn more about our world and ourselves. We may even have some fun doing it" (p. 135). I'm a card-carrying skeptic, so I love this stuff, but I think that an open-minded "true believer" might enjoy this book as well.
If you like "Real-Life X-Files," I recommend any of Nickell's other books ("Secrets of the Supernatural," "Entities" and "Ambrose Bierce is Missing"), as will as Hogart and Hutchinson's "Bizarre Beliefs." Each tells the skeptic's side of the story, but each is open minded and entertaining.
Comment 25 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
I read Fate and Fortian Times every month so I am definitely not a skeptic and fully expected to hate this book. The typical "skeptical inquirer" is a closed minded snob and ultimately just as silly as the most gullible "believer". However, Nickell is an exception. He approaches his cases open minded and without an attitude.
Most important is that this book is a fun read. The topic rarely attracts such coherent yet enjoyable writing. I had a blast reading it.
Comment 15 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
I find it hard to believe that this book has gotten so many negative reviews, and thus such a low average. I really don't think it deserves it. I found this a competent, readable book that provided a lot of answers for things I may have always wondered about, or had never even known of before. I appreciated that each topic only had a few (anywhere from three to fifteen or so) pages on the subject, so that if it was something I wasn't particularly interested in, I knew soon enough I'd be past it and on to something new.

My only real complaints would be to say that, first, some of the topics do get a bit repetitive (although, as I said, they don't last for too many pages, so it's easy to get by them). Second, I found chapter 3 ("Magicians Among The Stars") almost unbearably boring due to all the 'facts' I found very uninteresting. Thus, it seemed to drag on, and I had to force myself through it, which is unfortunate since it's in the beginning of the book. However, once past that, I was typically quite content to continue reading to the end.

If you've ever wondered just how some of the most common 'paranormal' claims were/are likely pulled off, or just want to gain a bit of knowledge on some interesting topics in the area, this is a pretty nice book to add to your collection.
Comment 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
This is a terrific read! Whether a paranormal buff or a total unbendable skeptic or anywhere between these extremes, you will love Joe Nickell's writing style, thorough research and fair treatment as he presents the evidence and weighs every idea for an alternate explanation. However, one thing I have always dreamed of is watching Nickell's own reaction and report to the media if he himself were to witness what could only be an Alien Craft, especially up close, a real flying saucer, or what is often referred to as a UFO. I would love to witness just what Nickell would have to say to the press if he were to be abducted, examined and allowed to observe alien greys and alien craft, then released unharmed. Would he, a serious lifelong skeptic have just as difficult a time in convincing others to believe how real his experience was? Perhaps he would never report it to anyone. Perhaps he would try to forget that it happened to him. Perhaps he would not believe that it really had happened to him and try to write it off as a dream. Nickell, Michael Shermer and other skeptics have famously spent so much energy disproving rather than believing the reports of UFO sightings or first hand abduction experiences of others.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By A Customer on February 6, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I would have to agree somewhat with the last reviewer.
I like to read both paranormal/strange occurence books and debunking/skeptical books to get both sides of the story.
Unfortunately for the Nickell, debunking camp, they always seem to be a bit more hysterical in their denials and more willing to bend the evidence to support their beliefs than the people they are trying to discredit.
Some of the mysteries that he investigates he does a pretty good job on and provides reasonable explanations for. Others, where he can't prove any clear fraud or provide a reasonable explanation for, he resorts to the old 'I don't think it could have happened, so it didn't' arguement, or provides explanations that couldn't possibly be true, such as the Doug/Dave claim to have produced hundreds of crop circles, rather than just saying the verdict is still out.
I love mysteries and I love more a good explanation for them. This is about 1/2 way there. There are some good explanations, excellent bibliography (for further studies) and a lot of arrogant, patronising statements which are there, seemingly, just to show Joe Nickells brillance and superiority to the poor benighted fools that might believe differently than him.
All in all, not a bad book, and the bibliographies at the chapter ends are worth the price alone.
Comment 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Real-Life X-Files: Investigating the Paranormal
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: Real-Life X-Files: Investigating the Paranormal