Saturday, August 28, 2010

The Unexplained by Karl P.N. Shuker

I've had this book for a while but, although I'd dipped into it to browse a bit, I hadn't actually read it until this weekend. This is the 2009 edition of a book first published in 1996; I should say first of all that the cover almost immediately popped off the book. The book itself is fine; it's just that the glue securing the cover to the spine isn't sticky enough to keep it in place.

Anyway, the book is a sort of encyclopedia of the strange, set out by area of the world. It starts with Great Britain and Ireland and ends with Australasia and Oceania, covering pretty much the entire world in between. As with Shuker's other books, the entries are well-researched and well-written, although they're short. I'd have liked more in-depth treatment, but that's not what this book is about. It's just an overview.

But it's a much better overview than most books of this sort. Instead of repeating the same old 'solutions' to mysteries, Shuker presents evidence instead of declaring things just generally spooky or laying everything at the feet of extraterrestrials. It's a lot of fun to read, either straight through or just to browse, cover or no.

B&N link

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