May 3 marks the death of Charles Fort, America’s chronicler of the unexplained. Fort spent his time trawling newspapers and library archives for stories of the paranormal and downright bizarre, later compiling and publishing them in several popular books. While Fort professed not to believe in the paranormal, he was more than happy to feed the public’s appetite for the unknown — an appetite that remains as strong today as it did in the early twentieth century.
Are you into aliens? Got a hankering for a haunting? Bullish on Bigfoot? You’ll love these books.
10. Charles Fort: The Man Who Invented the Supernatural
by Jim Steinmeyer
Who was Charles Fort, and what drove his obsession with the inexplicable, strange, and downright bizarre stories he collected? Was he a groundbreaking visionary? Crank? Huckster? Savvy marketeer? Jim Steinman’s biography is a detailed look at a true American original.
9. The Book of the Damned: The Collected Works of Charles Fort
by Charles Fort
Phantom airships! Ghosts! Frogs falling from the skies! Charles Fort collected encounters with these and other bizarre phenomena for publication in his groundbreaking books: The Book of the Damned, Lo! Wild Talents, and New Lands. Now, they’re all available in one volume. The Book of the Damned: The Collected Works of Charles Fort is an indispensable work of High Weirdness that will provide any curious-minded reader with hours of amusement.
8. Monsters Among Us: An Exploration of Otherworldly Bigfoots, Wolfmen, Portals, Phantoms, and Odd Phenomena
by Linda S. Godfrey
There’s a lost civilization of Lizard People living beneath the streets of Los Angeles. Werewolves roam the back roads of Wisconsin. Unidentified Flying Objects roam our skies with impunity. This is Linda Godfrey’s world. Join her on a tour of the inexplicable and horrifying in Monsters Among Us. You’ll find Godfrey’s accounts of the paranormal enthralling, even if you’re a hard-nosed skeptic.
7. Ghostland: An American History in Haunted Places
by Colin Dickey
Massacres, murders, and slavery: These are the things that some Americans would prefer to exist — but the past never dies. Colin Dickey’s Ghostland explores the true stories behind some of our country’s most infamous haunted places, and what our fascination with them says about the American psyche.
6. UFOs: Generals, Pilots, and Government Officials Go on the Record
by Leslie Kean
Has the government engaged in an active campaign to cover up evidence of alien activity? Professional pilots and other sober-minded professionals have filed many reports of encounters with Unidentified Flying Objects, but the public rarely hears of them — until now. Journalist Leslie Kean managed to do the impossible: Persuade normally tight-lipped officials to discuss UFOs on the record. Here are their stories.
5. Vampire Forensics: Uncovering the Origins of an Enduring Legend
by Mark Collins Jenkins
Drawing from anthropology, forensics, and medical science, Mark Colllins Jenkins investigates the real science behind the vampire myth, unearthing a strange but true tale that you’re not likely to find in your favorite paranormal novel.
Perfect for an afternoon in for your personal investigations.
4. The Making of Bigfoot: The Inside Story
by Greg Long
Did the legendary North American hominid known as Bigfoot start as a hoax by an unemployed rode rider? Writer Greg Long says yes. Starting with the famous Patterson-Gimlin tape, Long reveals how an epic hoax orchestrated by a cunning con artist turned into a cottage industry that continues to this day.
3. The Demon of Brownsville Road: A Pittsburgh Family’s Battle with Evil in Their Home
by Bob Cranmer
It was supposed to be a dream house. Instead, it was a nightmare. Little did Bob Cranmer know that moving his family into a home he’d wanted since he was a child make them all the target of a demon’s wrath. This is the story of a true spiritual battle, and a family that stood strong against the forces of Hell.
2. Field Guide to Lake Monsters, Sea Serpents, and Other Mystery Denizens of the Deep
by Loren Coleman
From the open ocean to Loch Ness, stories of sea creatures and mysterious serpents abound. Loren Coleman’s book is a comprehensive guide to where the monsters are, and what they are like according to the people who say they’ve seen them. Full of first-hand accounts, drawings, and maps, this is one book that you won’t want to hit the beach without.
1. Urban Legends: The As-Complete-As-One-Could-Be Guide to Modern Myths
by N.E. Genge
The phantom hitchhiker. Alligators in the sewers. Kidney Thieves. These are urban legends: the modern myths that get passed around on social media, at office parties, and email chains forwarded by your great Aunt Agnes. How do they start? Is there truth to any of them? Find out in this fascinating book.