Sunday, October 6, 2019

Book cover: "Ghosts Around the House"

  • Title: Ghosts Around the House
  • Author: Susy Smith (June 2, 1911 - February 11, 2001)
  • Front cover design: APTERYX
  • Book category (per back cover): Sociology
  • Publisher: Pocket Books, a division of Simon & Schuster (1971)
  • Original publisher: World Publishing Company (1970)
  • Cover price: 95 cents
  • Pages: 178
  • Format: Paperback
  • Back cover excerpt: "Eerie eyewitness accounts of ghosts who've haunted some of the nation's 'best' homes. ... These spirits, and others, have actually been seen, heard, felt and duly reported by thoroughly respectable citizens. Their tales are chilling and fascinating."
  • Selected chapter titles: The Lost Dauphin, Ghosts in a Governor's Mansion, The Hut in the Brush, Fort Sam Houston's Harvey, The Curse of the Bell Witch, The Case of the Pregnant Angels
  • First sentence (from Preface): "Publishers love to have their authors make appearances on television and radio when a new book comes out; and the communications people appreciate having an author because they usually get some good conversation about a topic of interest."
  • Last sentence: "I have said it before and I'll say it again: Whatever they are, ghosts are real."
  • Selected paragraph from middle: "For several hours we sat in a circle in the den in the dark ⁠— only the barest minimum of light was coming in through the windows from the outside. We talked and enjoyed ourselves throughout the evening. There is one school of thought that insists that séances must be held in absolute quiet. We were subscribing to the theories of the other school, which believes that happy and interested conversation enlivens the physical conditions and makes it possible for spirits to use the power we thus generate to perform their manifestations."
  • Amazon rating: All four reviewers gave it the full 5 stars.
  • Amazon review: In 2013, Allie wrote: "I read this book MANY years ago and have never forgotten it ... the stories are from true events that occurred, and once you read it, it will stay in your mind, too! They are not terrifying stories, but just really eerie enough to keep you reading ... I highly recommend!"
  • Kirkus review excerpt: "Miss Smith, an explicator like Hans Holzer who has wafted to us from that other frequency, continues her tittletattle. ... If it weren't for those true believers, this wouldn't have a ghost of a chance."
  • Bonus random sentence from middle: "Perhaps it was a prediction of the Kennedy assassination that occurred just a few days later."

I'm hoping to write a full post about Susy Smith someday. In the meantime, here's an interesting website about attempts to contact her spirit following her death.


  1. I was ravenous for books like this when I was a kid and will still pick them up gladly whenever I come across one. Before the days of paranormal shows on every other channel, books like this were your only outlet for the strange and unknown.

    1. Absolutely! We had Hans Holzer paperbacks all around the house, and I found them fascinating as a kid.