Monday, October 27, 2014

NONFICTION MONDAY: Ghostly Evidence by Kelly Milner Halls


ABOUT THE BOOK

Do you believe in ghosts? Enter the realm of the paranormal with Kelly Milner Halls. Explore what ghosts are, where they're found, and meet some famous ghost busters. Check out the high-tech equipment modern ghost hunters use, and see their most convincing evidence that ghosts are real. Finally, take a look at a few famous hoaxes. This book is a little bit spooky and a whole lot of fun!

Kelly Milner HallsABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kelly Milner Halls specializes in high interest, well researched nonfiction for young readers. Her books include TALES OF THE CRYPTIDS, SAVING THE BAGHDAD ZOO, IN SEARCH OF SASQUATCH and ALIEN INVESTIGATION. But she is also an avid YA fan and loves realistic fiction including GIRL MEETS BOY, the anthology she edited for Chronicle (January 2012). Her first short story is in that anthology. She hopes it won't be her last. When she's not writing or doing school visits, she works for her friend and mentor Chris Crutcher in Spokane.

REVIEW

While I am not a big believer in ghosts and the paranormal I did find this book quite interesting. With a wide variety of different opinions existing on the subject of the paranormal it's a topic that is bound to attract many readers of all ages.  This book provides an introduction to the topic for young readers. The author starts by exploring the topic of what exactly is a ghost and what types of manifestations people claim to have had, everything from apparitions to shadow figures and mists. One of the things I enjoyed the most was the variety of stories she shared from all over the country including ships, houses, hotels, and prisons.  She leaves it up to the reader to decide what to believe but shares a variety of opinions from self-proclaimed ghost hunters, mediums, and skeptics.  The stories I found most interesting were the ones from children's book authors Lisa Yee and Bruce Coville.  These kinds of stories really leave one wondering because of their strangeness yet lack of concrete evidence.

The author goes on to look at famous haunted places including the Alamo and Gettysburg battlefields.  The occupation of ghost hunter and medium are both explored as is the equipment that they often use.  Real-life hoaxes and some of the tricks that have been used to con people are also discussed.  It never ceases to amaze me how much time people spend conning other people out of their money.  The last chapter is basically a look at stories and experiences that really don't have a clear explanation, including some the author herself had while researching the book.  Overall, an interesting look at a controversial topic that middle grader readers are sure to enjoy.

For more great nonfiction reviews, check out the Nonfiction Monday blog.

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