Monday 18 April 2011

Haunted Waters reviewed on CBC Radio

Laura Cameron at Flanker Press was kind enough to send me this transcript of a review aired on CBC Radio, Corner Brook this morning. Here it is! - Dale

Haunted Waters: More True Ghost Stories of Newfoundland and Labrador

I've always admired folklorist Dale Jarvis for the way he treats stories of the supernatural and unexplained. Newfoundland and Labrador, as part of its history, is rich with stories and accounts of hauntings and paranormal phenomena.

Jarvis, with his academic background and solid reputation for doing high quality research, gives this aspect of our history extra dignity and credibility. His interest in this field is quite genuine and he treats it seriously – and not just because these events make for fascinating stories.

Jarvis's latest book, “Haunted Waters: More True Ghost Stories of Newfoundland and Labrador” is a follow-up to his popular collection “Haunted Shores.” Many of these stories were published previously in Jarvis's column in the Telegram, “Newfoundland Unexplained,” and in Downhome Magazine.

Jarvis takes an organized approach; “Haunted Waters” is sorted into sections dealing with specific types of haunting or disturbance. There are haunted houses and other buildings; apparitions; phantom ships, and animal spirits; there’s also a section on faerie folklore and local legends.

There seems hardly a corner of our province where Jarvis hasn't found something otherworldly or hard to explain. Many of the things recounted here relate to places in St. John's, but most deal with other places and readers won’t be able to help being impressed by this rich assortment.

The Town of Deer Lake, incidentally, has a ghost story of its own, and Jarvis supplies it here. The section on scaring off evil spirits relates specifically to Codroy Valley.

While our folk legend having to do with the sleep disturbance, known commonly throughout Newfoundland as the Old Hag, seems to have particular power to terrify, and Jarvis covers that one in this book as well.

“Haunted Waters” is an excellent collection –highly readable and enjoyable for adults and young adults – and not just those with a fondness for creepy tales. Readers interested in the folktales, superstitions, and history of our province will find much to admire about it as well.

For Newfoundland and Labrador public libraries, I’m Darrell Squires.
CBC Radio, Corner Brook, April 18, 2010

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