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The Psychical Researcher's Tale - The Sceptical Poltergeist   By: (1873-1947)

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In "The Psychical Researcher's Tale - The Sceptical Poltergeist," John D. Beresford takes readers on an intriguing journey into the world of paranormal investigation. Drawing from his own experiences as a psychical researcher, Beresford presents a captivating account of his encounter with a seemingly inexplicable phenomenon. With an air of skepticism and a deep commitment to scientific inquiry, the author provides an engaging narrative that challenges our preconceived notions about the supernatural.

One of the strengths of this book lies in Beresford's ability to balance skepticism with an open mind. Rather than dismissing claims of paranormal activity outright, he approaches each case with a rational and scientific mindset, tirelessly seeking logical explanations. This approach makes his writings all the more compelling, as readers are invited to join him on his quest for knowledge and understanding.

Beresford's engaging writing style and attention to detail further enhance the reading experience. The author effectively paints vivid pictures of the locations he investigates, bringing them to life for readers. His attention to detail also extends to the characters he encounters, providing colorful descriptions that make them feel like real people rather than mere subjects of study. This personal touch adds depth to the narrative and makes it easier for readers to connect with the story.

Moreover, "The Sceptical Poltergeist" delves into larger questions about the nature of belief and the limitations of scientific inquiry. Beresford grapples with the tension between skepticism and acceptance, as he navigates the thin line between evidence-based investigation and personal experiences. This exploration of philosophical ideas elevates the book beyond a simple paranormal investigation account, making it more thought-provoking and intellectually stimulating.

However, some readers may find the pacing of the book to be slower than expected. Beresford's meticulous attention to detail sometimes leads to a slower progression of the narrative, which may test the patience of those seeking a more fast-paced read. Additionally, the author occasionally delves into tangential discussions about the history of psychical research, which, while informative, can disrupt the flow of the main story.

Overall, "The Psychical Researcher's Tale - The Sceptical Poltergeist" is a thoughtfully written and engaging book that will appeal to both believers and skeptics alike. Beresford's commitment to scientific inquiry, his personal experiences, and his exploration of larger philosophical themes combine to create a thought-provoking and engrossing narrative. Although the pacing may be an issue for some, overall, this book offers a captivating glimpse into the enigmatic world of paranormal investigation.

First Page:


From "The New Decameron" Volume III.

By J. D. Beresford

There was once a time (he began) when I decided that I was a fraud; that I could not be a psychical researcher any longer. I determined to give it all up, to investigate no more phenomena nor attend another séance, nor read a word about psychical research for the remainder of my life. On the contrary, I planned an intensive study of the works of the later Victorians, of that blissful period in the history of Europe when we could believe in the comforting doctrine of materialism. "Oh!" I thought, "that one had a Haeckel or a Huxley living now to console us with their beautiful faith in the mortality of the soul!" The Neo Darwinians failed to convince me; the works of H. G. Wells left me cold.

I will tell you the events that brought me to this evil pass.

It is not likely that anyone here will remember the Slipperton case. It attracted little attention at the time. In 1905 there was still a little sanity left in the world. A few even of the London dailies were nearly sane then, and refused to report ghost stories unless they were known to be untrue. And the Slipperton case had hardly any publicity an inch in the Daily Mail , headed "Family Evicted by Ghosts," was the only newspaper report that I saw; though there may have been others... Continue reading book >>

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