"Whoever said that the truth is both stranger and more entertaining than fiction describes this book exactly." -- Skeptical Inquirer
Interest in the paranormal is at an all-time high. Ghosts, UFOs, psychic power and other unexplained phenomena are endlessly fascinating for us. People often seem to accept of reject claims of the paranormal based on their fundamental beliefs - as if such matters were theological. In contrast, "Real-Life X-Files" takes a scientific approach, basing its arguments on the premise that what seem like paranormal mysteries should be carefully investigated with a view toward explaining them using evidence from the cases. Joe Nickell takes readers on investigative journeys that range from the uniquely whimsical (such as the case of the giant Coleman Frog) to the bizarre (such as alien-abduction experiences) to the potentially transcendental (the mysterious Shroud of Turin). He examines some of the world's most significant, perplexing and enduring enigmas: spontaneous human combustion, hauntings, UFOs and alien abductions, stigmata, psychic detectives, legendary monsters, reincarnation, crop circles and a host of other topics. A wide variety of investigative techniques are employed, including forensic examination, physical experimentation, archival research, folklore study and iconographic analysis. The very case titles resonate with mystery and spine-tingling intrigue: "The Secrets of Oak Island", "The Devil's Footprints", "Extraterrestrial Autopsy", "The Case of the Petrified Girl", "Death of the Fire-Breathing Woman", "The Silver Lake Serpent", "Adventure of the Weeping Icon", "Legend of the Phantom Ship", and many more. As the "X-Files" becomes the "ex-files" of solved cases, believer and skeptic alike should appreciate the innovative approaches and honest answers provided by this investigative casebook.
About the Author
Joe Nickell, author of Crime Science: Methods of Forensic Detection, is Senior Research Fellow of the international Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal (CSICOP). He writes the “Investigative Files” column for Skeptical Inquirer magazine.