Do you believe in ghosts?

Do you believe in ghosts?

Posted on August 28 by Maria Da Silva And Andrew Hind in Mystery, Recent Releases
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Do you believe in ghosts? Yes, I’m talking to you. Well, do you? Do you believe in ghosts?

I’ve always been fascinated by things that go bump in the night. I remember as a child devouring the old Usborne volume on ‘Ghosts’ and being ecstatic when I stumbled upon copies of Fate magazine. My imagination was filled with stories of the restless dead that left my heart fluttering with panic. I didn’t want to imagine what would happen if I actually encountered a spirit that refused to rest in its grave despite being bound with wards and blessing. It was terrifyingly thrilling.

I never dreamt, of course, that one day I would be a writer; much-less that I would be given the opportunity to pen my own book about the undead. I grew up and embraced historical studies. I waved good-bye to my youthful fantasies. To my yellowed and well-worn copies of Fate and that Usborne book (which I recently found in a dusty closet, by the way, and it is still glorious). And to the very possibility of ghosts prowling in the night, lingering in some form of half-existence.

Fast forward a few decades, and with mixed emotions I found myself almost ready to click the send button on my computer. Ghosts of Niagara-on-the-Lake, my first ghost book, childhood dreams made real, was complete and ready to be turned over to my editor at Dundurn. My finger hovered over the key. I found myself almost reluctant to wave goodbye to the manuscript that had taken many months to compete. I was exhausted but knew that once I pressed ‘Send,’ the die was cast. The stories of restless spirits that I had been forced to omit — and there were many, because after-all, Niagara-on-the-Lake is perhaps the most haunted community in Canada — would be left to be told by other authors.

Eventually, of course, my finger dropped and the email was sent.

And that was that.

Or so I thought. Then last year I received an email I never expected. Can you add new stories for a second edition? I jumped at the chance. Here was an opportunity to crack open my files — my vault, as I like to call it — and share some of the many tales space required I leave out of the first edition, and some new ones that had been shared with me since. 

The result, when combined with a stunning new cover and some additional historical photos I’d since uncovered, is a far better book, far closer to the one I originally envisioned.

And still, there are many stories left untold. Maybe one day I’ll be able to share these as well…

What’s that? You want to know if I believe in ghosts? After writing Ghosts of Niagara-on-the-Lake, I can honestly say yes, I do. Now, if you’re anything like me, you want proof. I can’t offer that. No one can. But I saw the honesty and, in many cases, the fear on the face of every one of the dozens of people who shared their experiences for this book. They swayed me. More than that, I had an experience of my own that I couldn’t explain, no matter how I tried.

But the real question is, do you believe in ghosts? Read this book — really, please, read it — and then decide. Maybe you’ll be swayed by the earnestness of the witnesses as well.

Andrew Hind

Posted by KathrynB on December 6, 2014
Andrew Hind photo

Andrew Hind

Andrew Hind is an author and a local history columnist. He has written on history and travel for a number of regional and international publications. He lives in Bradford, Ontario.