Leo Ruickbie - A Brief Guide to the Supernatural - Little, Brown Book Group

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A Brief Guide to the Supernatural

Ghosts, Vampires and the Paranormal

By Leo Ruickbie

  • E-Book
  • £P.O.R.

The perfect introduction to the world of all things eerie, inexplicable and otherworldly.

From Most Haunted to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, from Underworld to Twilight, from Doom to Resident Evil, The Brief Guide to the Supernatural goes in search of the unearthly with unexpected results; combining history, science, psychology and myth he explores the allure of the paranormal - why so many people still believe in ghosts and angels - as well as the many ways people have tried to contact and record the impossible.

Biographical Notes

Leo Ruickbie is an historian and sociologist of magic, witchcraft and Wicca. He is the author of Witchcraft Out of the Shadows. He is also the founder of the founder and director of the Witchcraft Information Centre & Archive.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781780330709
  • Publication date: 16 Feb 2012
  • Page count:
  • Imprint: Robinson
Robinson

Angels in the Trenches

Leo Ruickbie
Authors:
Leo Ruickbie

After a miraculous escape from the German military juggernaut in the small Belgian town of Mons in 1914, the first major battle that the British Expeditionary Force would face in the First World War, the British really believed that they were on the side of the angels. Indeed, after 1916, the number of spiritualist societies in the United Kingdom almost doubled, from 158 to 309. As Arthur Conan Doyle explained, 'The deaths occurring in almost every family in the land brought a sudden and concentrated interest in the life after death. People not only asked the question, "If a man die, shall he live again?" but they eagerly sought to know if communication was possible with the dear ones they had lost.' From the Angel of Mons to the popular boom in spiritualism as the horrors of industrialised warfare reaped their terrible harvest, the paranormal - and its use in propaganda - was one of the key aspects of the First World War.Angels in the Trenches takes us from defining moments, such as the Angel of Mons on the Front Line, to spirit communication on the Home Front, often involving the great and the good of the period, such as aristocrat Dame Edith Lyttelton, founder of the War Refugees Committee, and the physicist Sir Oliver Lodge, Principal of Birmingham University. We see here people at every level of society struggling to come to terms with the ferocity and terror of the war, and their own losses: soldiers looking for miracles on the battlefield; parents searching for lost sons in the séance room. It is a human story of people forced to look beyond the apparent certainties of the everyday - and this book follows them on that journey.

Orbit

The Labyrinth Index

Charles Stross
Authors:
Charles Stross

Britain is under New Management. The disbanding of the Laundry - the British espionage agency that deals with supernatural threats, has culminated in the unthinkable - an elder god in residence in 10 Downing Street.But in true 'the enemy of my enemy' fashion, Mhairi Murphy finds herself working with His Excellency Nylarlathotep on foreign policy - there are worse things, it seems, than an elder god in power, and they lie in deepest, darkest America.A thousand-mile-wide storm system has blanketed the midwest, and the president is nowhere to be found - Mhari must lead a task force of disgraced Laundry personnel into the storm front to discover the truth. But working for an elder god is never easy, and as the stakes rise, Mhari will soon question exactly where her loyalties really lie.

Hachette Audio

Brief Cases

Jim Butcher
Authors:
Jim Butcher
Piatkus

Covert Game

Christine Feehan
Authors:
Christine Feehan

Rescuing an industrial spy from the hands of a criminal mastermind is a suicide mission for the GhostWalkers. And there's no one more up to the task than Gino Mazza. He's the perfect killing machine--a man driven by demons so dark and destructive that his blighted soul has given up trying to find solace. But his laser-sharp focus on his target has transformed into something nearing desire.A treasonous senator dangled top secret GhostWalker data in front of a Chinese crime lord, and he bit. Zara Hightower, one of the world's leading experts on artificial intelligence, was sent in to psychically wipe the crime lord's computer network. She succeeded, but at a huge cost. Now she's the captive of a man who has descended into paranoid madness. Torture and death await her... But GhostWalkers never leave one of their own in enemy territory. And it's up to Gino to save Zara, or kill her if it turns out she's led them into a trap. Either way, heaven or hell won't stop him...

Little, Brown

Little Fires Everywhere

Celeste Ng
Authors:
Celeste Ng

THE NEW YORK TIMES TOP TEN BESTSELLER'I am loving Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. Maybe my favorite novel I've read this year' John Green, author of The Fault in Our Stars'To say I love this book is an understatement. It's a deep psychological mystery about the power of motherhood, the intensity of teenage love, and the danger of perfection. It moved me to tears' Reese WitherspoonThe brilliant new novel from the author of the New York Times bestseller, Everything I Never Told You. Everyone in Shaker Heights was talking about it that summer: how Isabelle, the last of the Richardson children, had finally gone around the bend and burned the house down. In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is meticulously planned - from the layout of the winding roads, to the colours of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules.Enter Mia Warren - an enigmatic artist and single mother- who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenage daughter Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons. Soon Mia and Pearl become more than just tenants: all four Richardson children are drawn to the mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past, and a disregard for the rules that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community.When old family friends attempt to adopt a Chinese-American baby, a custody battle erupts that dramatically divides the town - and puts Mia and Elena on opposing sides. Suspicious of Mia and her motives, Elena is determined to uncover the secrets in Mia's past. But her obsession will come at an unexpected and devastating cost...

Corsair

Manhattan Beach

Jennifer Egan
Authors:
Jennifer Egan

'This is a novel that will pull you in and under and carry you away on its rip tides . . . Its resonances continue to wash over the reader long after the novel ends' the Guardian'2017's Most Anticipated Book . . . it will suck you into its orbit and remind you just why it is you love reading' Stylist magazine'This is a novel that deserves to join the canon of New York stories' New York Times Book ReviewThe long-awaited novel from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of A Visit from the Goon Squad, Manhattan Beach opens in Brooklyn during the Great Depression.'We're going to see the sea,' Anna whispered. Anna Kerrigan, nearly twelve years old, accompanies her father to the house of a man who, she gleans, is crucial to the survival of her father and her family. Anna observes the uniformed servants, the lavishing of toys on the children, and some secret pact between her father and Dexter Styles. Years later, her father has disappeared and the country is at war. Anna works at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, where women are allowed to hold jobs that had always belonged to men. She becomes the first female diver, the most dangerous and exclusive of occupations, repairing the ships that will help America win the war. She is the sole provider for her mother, a farm girl who had a brief and glamorous career as a Ziegfield folly, and her lovely, severely disabled sister. At a night club, she chances to meet Styles, the man she visited with her father before he vanished, and she begins to understand the complexity of her father's life, the reasons he might have been murdered. Mesmerizing, hauntingly beautiful, with the pace and atmosphere of a noir thriller and a wealth of detail about organized crime, the merchant marine and the clash of classes in New York, Egan's first historical novel is a masterpiece, a deft, startling, intimate exploration of a transformative moment in the lives of women and men, America and the world. Manhattan Beach is a magnificent novel by one of the greatest writers of our time.'Beautifully rendered . . . genuinely affecting and handsomely constructed. It moves for all the right reasons' Independent 'A gripping, modern version of a 19th century novel . . . such an absorbing read' Evening Standard

Orbit

The Remnant

Charlie Fletcher
Authors:
Charlie Fletcher
Robinson

A Brief History of Florence Nightingale

Hugh Small
Authors:
Hugh Small
Orbit

The Delirium Brief

Charles Stross
Authors:
Charles Stross
Piatkus

Who's Afraid Too?

Maria Lewis
Authors:
Maria Lewis

'Gripping, fast-paced, and completely unexpected, Who's Afraid has more twists than a tornado. I loved this story!' Darynda Jones, New York Times bestselling author of the Charley Davidson series'Truly one of the best in the genre I have ever read.' Oscar-nominee Lexi Alexander (Green Street Hooligans, Punisher: War Zone, Arrow, Supergirl)Tommi Grayson: all bark, all bite . . . and now she's BACK!After the worst family reunion in history, Tommi needed some space. She's spent the last few weeks trying to understand her heritage - the one that comes with a side order of fur - as well as learning about her Maori ancestry and how she can connect to it. But she can only escape for so long. When an unspeakable evil returns, Tommi will need every piece of knowledge and all the skills she has. With the help of allies old and new, frenemies both helpful and super-annoying, she's going to take the fight to the enemy . . . Praise for Maria Lewis 'It's about time we had another kick-arse werewolf heroine - can't wait to find out what happens next!' Keri Arthur'Journalist Maria Lewis grabs the paranormal fiction genre by the scruff of its neck to give it a shake with her debut novel Who's Afraid?' The West Australian'Underworld meets Animal Kingdom.' ALPHA Reader 'Lewis creates an intriguing world that's just begging to be fleshed out in further books.' APN 'If you haven't heard about Maria Lewis's new urban fantasy novel Who's Afraid you must have been living under a rock.' Good Reading Magazine'An intriguing take on a classic monster with vibrant, modern characters.' Sci Fi Bulletin'Pay attention urban fantasy fans - Maria Lewis is a name you'll want to remember.' One More Page 'Definitely worth reading over and over again, as well as buying multiple copies. Great stocking stuffers, those werewolf books.' Maria Lewis's mum

Piatkus

Power Game

Christine Feehan
Authors:
Christine Feehan

When members of a United Nations joint security force are taken hostage by radical terrorists in Indonesia, Captain Ezekiel Fortunes is called to lead the rescue team. Part of a classified government experiment, Zeke is a supersoldier with enhanced abilities. He can see better and run faster than the enemy, disappear when necessary and hunt along any terrain. There are those in the world willing to do anything for power like that...A formidable spy genetically engineered to hide in plain sight, Bellisia rarely meets a man who doesn't want to control her or kill her. But Zeke is different. His gaze, his touch - they awaken feelings inside her that she never thought possible. He's the kind of man she could settle down with - if she can keep him alive...

Robinson

Superstition and Science, 1450-1750

Derek Wilson
Authors:
Derek Wilson

'A dazzling chronicle, a bracing challenge to modernity's smug assumptions' - Bryce Christensen, Booklist'O what a world of profit and delightOf power, of honour and omnipotenceIs promised to the studious artisan.'Christopher Marlowe, Dr FaustusBetween the Renaissance and the Enlightenment, Europe changed out of all recognition and particularly transformative were the ardent quest for knowledge and the astounding discoveries and inventions which resulted from it. The movement of blood round the body; the movement of the earth round the sun; the velocity of falling objects (and, indeed, why objects fall) - these and numerous other mysteries had been solved by scholars in earnest pursuit of scientia. Several keys were on offer to thinkers seeking to unlock the portal of the unknown:Folk religion had roots deep in the pagan past. Its devotees sought the aid of spirits. They had stores of ancient wisdom, particularly relating to herbal remedies. Theirs was the world of wise women, witches, necromancers, potions and incantations.Catholicism had its own magic and its own wisdom. Dogma was enshrined in the collective wisdom of the doctors of the church and the rigid scholastic system of teaching. Magic resided in the ranks of departed saints and the priestly miracle of the mass.Alchemy was at root a desire to understand and to exploit the material world. Practitioners studied the properties of natural substances. A whole system of knowledge was built on the theory of the four humours.Astrology was based on the belief that human affairs were controlled by the movement of heavenly bodies. Belief in the casting of horoscopes was almost universal.Natural Philosophy really began with Francis Bacon and his empirical method. It was the beginning of science 'proper' because it was based on observation and not on predetermined theory.Classical Studies. University teaching was based on the quadrivium - which consisted largely of rote learning the philosophy and science current in the classical world (Plato, Aristotle, Galen, Ptolemy, etc.). Renaissance scholars reappraised these sources of knowledge.Islamic and Jewish Traditions. The twelfth-century polymath, Averroes, has been called 'the father of secular thought' because of his landmark treatises on astronomy, physics and medicine. Jewish scholars and mystics introduced the esoteric disciplines of the Kabbalah.New Discoveries. Exploration connected Europeans with other peoples and cultures hitherto unknown, changed concepts about the nature of the planet, and led to the development of navigational skills.These 'sciences' were not entirely self-contained. For example physicians and theologians both believed in the casting of horoscopes. Despite popular myth (which developed 200 years later), there was no perceived hostility between faith and reason. Virtually all scientists and philosophers before the Enlightenment worked, or tried to work, within the traditional religious framework. Paracelsus, Descartes, Newton, Boyle and their compeers proceeded on the a príori notion that the universe was governed by rational laws, laid down by a rational God.. This certainly did not mean that there were no conflicts between the upholders of different types of knowledge. Dr Dee's neighbours destroyed his laboratory because they believed he was in league with the devil. Galileo famously had his run-in with the Curia.By the mid-seventeenth century 'science mania' had set in; the quest for knowledge had become a pursuit of cultured gentlemen. In 1663 The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge received its charter. Three years later the French Academy of Sciences was founded. Most other European capitals were not slow to follow suit. In 1725 we encounter the first use of the word 'science' meaning 'a branch of study concerned either with a connected body of demonstrated truths or with observed facts systematically classified'. Yet, it was only nine years since the last witch had been executed in Britain - a reminder that, although the relationship of people to their environment was changing profoundly, deep-rooted fears and attitudes remained strong.

Piatkus

Blood Vow

J. R. Ward
Authors:
J. R. Ward

A tough vampire warrior in training and a quick-witted aristocrat develop an irresistible attraction and work together to uncover a mystery. The second in a new spin-off paranormal romance series set in the world of the #1 New York Times bestselling Black Dagger Brotherhood.Trainees at the Black Dagger Brotherhood' training centre continue to prepare for the fight against the Lessening Society, but fighting is the last thing on Axe's mind. Still plagued with the guilt of his father's death, the brooding loner finds himself battling an unlikely attraction to Peyton's bright, aristocratic cousin, Elise.Elise feels it too - and when the two are thrown together in unusual circumstances Elise must decide whether she can trust Axe to help her uncover the mystery surrounding her sister's death. Meanwhile, Mary and Rhage are in the process of adopting Bitty, a young pretrans orphan, until the appearance of a young male claiming to be Bitty's blooded uncle threatens to tear the new family apart.

Robinson

The Impossible Zoo

Leo Ruickbie
Authors:
Leo Ruickbie
Orbit

Fellside

M. R. Carey
Authors:
M. R. Carey
Piatkus

Flameout

Keri Arthur
Authors:
Keri Arthur
Abacus

Dynasty

Tom Holland
Authors:
Tom Holland

Rome was first ruled by kings, then became a republic. But in the end, after conquering the world, the Republic collapsed. Rome was drowned in blood. So terrible were the civil wars that the Roman people finally came to welcome the rule of an autocrat who could give them peace. 'Augustus,' their new master called himself: 'The Divinely Favoured One'.The lurid glamour of the dynasty founded by Augustus has never faded. No other family can compare for sheer unsettling fascination with its gallery of leading characters. Tiberius, the great general who ended up a bitter recluse, notorious for his perversions; Caligula, the master of cruelty and humiliation who rode his chariot across the sea; Agrippina, the mother of Nero, manoeuvering to bring to power the son who would end up having her murdered; Nero himself, racing in the Olympics, marrying a eunuch, and building a pleasure palace over the fire-gutted centre of his capital.Now, in the sequel to Rubicon, Tom Holland gives a dazzling portrait of Rome's first imperial dynasty. Dynasty traces the full astonishing story of its rule of the world: both the brilliance of its allure, and the blood-steeped shadows cast by its crimes. Ranging from the great capital rebuilt in marble by Augustus to the dank and barbarian-haunted forests of Germany, it is populated by a spectacular cast: murderers and metrosexuals, adulterers and druids, scheming grandmothers and reluctant gladiators. Dynasty is the portrait of a family that transformed and stupefied Rome.

Basic Books

The Gunning of America

Pamela Haag
Authors:
Pamela Haag

Americans have always loved guns. This special bond was forged during the American Revolution and sanctified by the Second Amendment. It is because of this exceptional relationship that American civilians are more heavily armed than the citizens of any other nation.Or so we're told.In The Gunning of America , historian Pamela Haag overturns this conventional wisdom. American gun culture, she argues, developed not because the gun was exceptional, but precisely because it was not: guns proliferated in America because throughout most of the nation's history, they were perceived as an unexceptional commodity, no different than buttons or typewriters.Focusing on the history of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company, one of the most iconic arms manufacturers in America, Haag challenges many basic assumptions of how and when America became a gun culture. Under the leadership of Oliver Winchester and his heirs, the company used aggressive, sometimes ingenious sales and marketing techniques to create new markets for their product. Guns have never sold themselves" rather, through advertising and innovative distribution campaigns, the gun industry did. Through the meticulous examination of gun industry archives, Haag challenges the myth of a primal bond between Americans and their firearms. Over the course of its 150 year history, the Winchester Repeating Arms Company sold over 8 million guns. But Oliver Winchester,a shirtmaker in his previous career,had no apparent qualms about a life spent arming America. His daughter-in-law Sarah Winchester was a different story. Legend holds that Sarah was haunted by what she considered a vast blood fortune, and became convinced that the ghosts of rifle victims were haunting her. She channeled much of her inheritance, and her conflicted conscience, into a monstrous estate now known as the Winchester Mystery House, where she sought refuge from this ever-expanding army of phantoms.In this provocative and deeply-researched work of narrative history, Haag fundamentally revises the history of arms in America, and in so doing explodes the clichés that have created and sustained our lethal gun culture.

Piatkus

The Beast

J. R. Ward
Authors:
J. R. Ward
PublicAffairs

The Smartest Places on Earth

Antoine van Agtmael, Fred Bakker
Authors:
Antoine van Agtmael, Fred Bakker

The remarkable story of how rustbelt cities such as Akron and Albany in the United States and Eindhoven in Europe are becoming the unlikely hotspots of global innovation, where sharing brainpower and making things smarter- not cheaper- is creating a new economy that is turning globalization on its headAntoine van Agtmael and Fred Bakker counter recent conventional wisdom that the American and northern European economies have lost their initiative in innovation and their competitive edge by focusing on an unexpected and hopeful trend: the emerging sources of economic strength coming from areas once known as rustbelts" that had been written off as yesterday's story.In these communities, a combination of forces- visionary thinkers, local universities, regional government initiatives, start-ups, and big corporations- have created brainbelts." Based on trust, a collabourative style of working, and freedom of thinking prevalent in America and Europe, these brainbelts are producing smart products that are transforming industries by integrating IT, sensors, big data, new materials, new discoveries, and automation. From polymers to medical devices, the brainbelts have turned the tide from cheap, outsourced production to making things smart right in our own backyard. The next emerging market may, in fact, be the West.