Book Review: Embracing The Spirits by Barbara Parks

17436884Title: Embracing the Spirits

Author: Barbara Parks

Genre: Non Fiction, Ghosts and Hauntings

Rating: 2 stars

Publisher: Llewellyn Worldwide

Purchase: Amazon, B&N

Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Traumatized by a poltergeist as a young adult, Barbara Parks never imagined she would overcome her fear of the spirit world. This collection of true ghost stories relates her dramatic, heartwarming journey toward embracing her gift for spirit communication.

Barbara uses pendulums, table-tipping, and her own homemade Ouija table to speak with spirits in old taverns, hotels, schoolhouses, theaters, and her own home. Some spirits need her help in reuniting with loved ones or delivering a special message. Barbara also offers comfort to suicide and murder victims, crosses over troubled spirits, calms an angry poltergeist who can manifest and hurl stones, and captures spirit energy in photographs. These real-life paranormal encounters illuminate the mysterious spirit world–and the fascinating life of a medium.

Embracing The Spirits is the second book I’ve read by Barbara Parks about her encounters with spirits, poltergeists and the supernatural. While I enjoyed In The Presence of Spirits, her first book, I was not as impressed with this second book. I feel like she lost track here, and instead of telling a coherent story, she handles case by case, but never providing us with much detail, or with an ending. The chapters are extremely short, and by the time we get to know the setting, the spirit in question, and what is going on, the author has already moved on to another chapter.

Barbara’s methods are also questionable at best. She uses ouija boards, which can be very dangerous, especially for mediums. When she tells us about her table-tipping adventures, I either grew convinced she herself is being haunted by a poltergeist of some sort, or these stories were invented, or at least dramatized. Table-tipping can happen, but hardly as often as she makes it appear, and certainly not with every reading. If this does happen, then either some kind of spirit has attached itself to her, or something strange is going on. Either way, if these events are true, they give reason for caution, and I’d urge the author not to do anymore table-tipping sessions for a while.

I didn’t enjoy this book, mostly because by the time I was fully interested in a spirit and their story, we’d already moved on to something else. Pages pass without anything happening, except the occassional telling about how the author practices to enhance her gift. The book was a bit dull because of that, and I wish she’d stick with the premise of her first book, and focus on one case mostly. That probably would’ve made the readers more involved in the story.

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