Book Review: Nessie by Nick Redfern

28700182Title: Nessie: Exploring the Supernatural Origins of the Loch Ness Monster

Author: Nick Redfern

Genre: Nonfiction, Monsters

Age Group: Adult

Rating: 2 stars

Purchase: Amazon

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

Dive into the Dark and Turbulent Domain of Nessie, the World’s Most Supernatural Monster
Deep in the black waters of Loch Ness lurks a long-necked, hump-backed monster that for centuries has fascinated those lucky—or unlucky—enough to see it. From the earliest sightings in 565 AD to the Nessie craze of the twentieth century, this creature has been steeped in the world of supernatural strangeness.
Join Nick Redfern on an exciting journey into the paranormal origins of Nessie, exploring ideas that go far beyond the ordinary. This comprehensive guide offers lore, unique theories, hot spots, and photographs. Experience firsthand encounters, discover how Nessie is connected to the occult, and meet other mysterious monsters that live in Loch Ness. Nessie presents a fresh approach to the mystery, one that will take you down new and sometimes frightening paths as you hunt for the truth.

When I saw Nessie on Netgalley, I was intrigued. I read Nick Redfern’s previous books Chupacabra Road Trip, and gave it 4 stars. In that book, I thought the author did an admirable job of getting to the bottom of the mystery, providing both plausible, scientific and less plausible, supernatural, explanations for the origins of the Chupacabra. I also really enjoyed reading about the author’s own investigation visiting the “crime scenes” where the chupacabra had hurt animals, and talking to locals.

I expected something similar from Nessie. A run-down of historical research, the author’s own investigation on site, talking to the locals and some other Nessie specialists, and offering a wide range of explanations, from the plausible to the less plausible.

Unfortunately, the author lost me almost right from the start. He focuses on the regular explanations (Nessie being a dinosaur, some type of unknown animal, and so on) for a very brief timespan, maybe a chapter at most, and then jumps straight into the supernatural. It’s not even that I mind the supernatural as an explanation for Nessie – it’s that I doubt it’s the only possible one. Also, the book goes into so many different directions, always jumping back to names mentioned chapters prior, and telling stories that have little, or nothing to do with Nessie.

For example, the author devotes several chapters to Alastair Crowley, who spent some time in a house near Loch Ness, yet only said one or two things about Nessie – yet the author thinks this warrants a lot of page time, in regards to the Nessie investigation. There’s also mention of several other wizards/ warlocks, similar to Crowley, who may or may not have had anything to do with Loch Ness.

The author likes to explain everything away by blaming it on the supernatural. You can’t take a decent photograph of Nessie? Must be paranormal. Nessie appears different to several people? Must be a) there’s several Nessies and b) it’s paranormal. The list goes on and on. The author also refers to high-strangeness, and to how some people’s lifes were forever influenced after they investigated Nessie, as if something paranormal warned them to stay away.

Then there’s also a chapter on UFO’s, men in black, and really, there’s no end to all the strangeness mentioned in the book. It was over the top. Is Nessie paranormal now, or is she an alien?

I expected this book would debunk some theories regarding Nessie, and investigate some other theories, or the author’s own theory, but it focuses primarily on the paranormal theory, and hardly tries to debunk the others. After reading it, I don’t know much more than I did before – I still don’t know what Nessie is, but my money is still on a prehistoric monster / animal we simply haven’t encountered yet, rather than a paranormal shape-shifting kelpie.

Book Review: Chupacabra Road Trip by Nick Redfern

25921012Title: Chupacabra Road Trip

Author: Nick Redfern

Genre: Non-Fiction, Monsters

Age Group: Adult

Rating: 4 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Review copy provided by thep ublisher in exchange for an honest review.

In 1995, the island nation of Puerto Rico was seized with mass hysteria over a new menace lurking in the rainforests gruesomely killing livestock, leaving strange holes in their necks and draining their bodies of blood. Described by eyewitnesses as a devilish creature three feet tall with spikes along its back and a mouth full of razor-sharp fangs, the strange animal was given the name Chupacabra—Spanish for “goat-sucker.”
Join noted monster hunter Nick Redfern as he traverses the rugged backcountry of Puerto Rico, Mexico, and Texas, and together with his spirited crew, investigates the continuing legacy of this fearsome beast. Whether he’s interviewing locals, analyzing physical evidence, or sorting out the facts from the legends, Nick’s journey into the realm of the Chupacabra will make you wonder just what’s out there sucking blood in the night.

Although an avid fan of monsters, hauntings, and just about anything paranormal, I have to admit my knowledge of the chupacabra has always been limited. So when I was presented with the opportunity to read and review a book focusing on this mysterious beast, I immediately jumped at the opportunity.

Nick Redfern starred in several TV shows and documentaries and has now written a book about the chupacabra. He spent over ten years looking for the creature, and collected several eye witness accounts for documentaries, as well as investigated several theories. Since reading the book I’ve been planning to look up some of his documentaries but didn’t get around to  it yet. Either way, the writing style is fluent and easy to read. The author details ten years of investigation chronologically and then expands upon several theories. Is the chupacabra an alien? A mythological creature? A diseased version of an animal we know? A dinosaur that survived? A genetic mutation by the government? A genetic mutation that happened purely by accident? Or is it something else? All theories are explored and investigated.

The author also provided some photographs, and makes the distinction between the Texas chupacabra and the Puerto Rico chupacabra, which I thought was a good insight. Chupacabra Road Trip had some humor too, and overall it was a pleasant read on the topic and I learned a lot about chupacabras (maybe even more than I had ever hoped to learn!).

Release Day Party Forbidden Darkness


About the Book

22840122Title: Forbidden Darkness

Author: Alec John Belle

Genre: YA Paranormal / Fantasy

Being a sixteen year old Monster Hunter sucks. That’s what Heather Hawkins learns just days before her sixteenth birthday. After dealing with her best friend, Kristen’s, attempted suicide, the last thing Heather wants is any more drama. When the realistic dreams of Heather being haunted by a guy named Kadin begin, she learns the truth. She is a Monster Hunter, and on her birthday, she will undergo a change that will make her stronger, more powerful, and nearly invincible to Monsters. Along with having a hot new trainer named Philip, she believes that this will be a new beginning for herself. Unfortunately, Monsters aren’t the only thing Heather needs to worry about. With someone stalking her dreams, she realizes there may be more than just Monsters in the world, and that Kadin will do anything to stop her from helping the Monster Hunters. Even if that means unleashing an entity that was locked away by his people thousands of years ago. In this all-new paranormal young adult series, romances will be formed, evil becomes unleashed, and everyone Heather loves will soon be at risk. Because in a world where Monsters walk the earth, anything is possible.

Author Bio

Alec John Belle is an online high school student that resides in the state of Massachusetts. At the age of 16 he wrote his first novel, Before I Break. His hobbies include reading, writing, and obsessing over Pretty Little Liars. He writes about tough topics that many are too afraid to talk about like suicide, homosexuality, self harm, cyberbullying, anxiety disorders, addiction, among other teenage issues, and he often blends these ideas with the paranormal.


Buy the book on Amazon.