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March 24, 2019

Field Guide to the Spirit World by Susan B. Martinez ~ a Review

by MK French

The forward is written by Whitley Strieber and is written with the idea that people are spirits housed inside a body of flesh. Therefore, lost spirits that haunt the world can try to inhabit our bodies, and there are a number of things that can leave them vulnerable to possession. A number of mental illnesses would predispose someone to hauntings or possessions, and may even be the result of such activity. These aren't necessarily all harmful violations, as the spirits can also provide information and gifts to those open to them.

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Field Guide to the Spirit World
March 2019;  Bear & Company; 978-1591433323
ebook, print (304 pages); non-fiction
I had requested this book to read thinking it was a fictional novel that would have a field guide as its conceit for the storytelling. This is not that kind of book. Martinez quotes a number of articles written within the past two hundred years regarding the fields of parapsychology, psychology, and medicine. She also quotes the Oahspe bible, a text published in 1882 that had been the result of automatic writing. There are a number of accounts from different religions and spiritual traditions woven into this book, as well as extensive amounts of interviews with serial killers and sociopaths quoted. Because a fair number of them are people with multiple personality disorder described a sense of "other" coming over them, or all describing it as a demon, this is laid out as further proof of spirits influencing the material world.

Readers that already believe in the spirits or are sensitive to such things will be drawn to a book like this. This gave me a bit of a headache to wade through because of formatting issues in the advance reader's copy, and it seemed to be more quotes than new text or a literal checklist to go through. Overall, not the kind of book I normally read at all.

Buy Field Guide to the Spirit World at Amazon

Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband, three young children, and golden retriever.

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