I ordered this book in January 2007 after having some strange experiences at my house and also before I started attending psychic development workshops and open circle at a spiritualist church in my area.
Anyways, here is a listing of the chapters:
Chapter 1: Open your mind to the other side: what is a medium?
Chapter 2: Psychic school: how to set up and run a circle
Chapter 3: Quick ways to get started: psychic art, advance clairvoyance, and other techniques
Chapter 4: Sensing vibrations: developing the gift of psychometry, and how to sense history
Chapter 5: Going deeper: meditation, spirit guides, seeing and sensing the aura
Chapter 6: Mediumistic development: giving proof of life after death
Chapter 7: Spiritual investigation: spiritual walks, dowsing and ghost huts
Chapter 8: Advanced techniques: trance, inspirational speaking, blindfold clairvoyance
Chapter 9: Presentation: Demonstrating to an audience
Opening to the Other Side is very beginner-friendly, easy-to-read and laid out in an aesthetically pleasing manner with photos and illustrations. As you can see from the listing of the chapters, he touches on many topics related to psychic and mediumship development, such as forming your own circle, the things that take place in a circle, different types of psychometry (which you often practise in psychic development workshops and in circle), personality traits of mediums, auras, chakras, what are spirit guides, etc.
He gives a good description of all the topics mentioned as well as even providing exercises that people can do with a partner as well as some they can do alone. He goes into depth when it comes to critical matters such as the importance of meditation, things you may experience in meditation and how to deal with them. Meditation is very important to mediumship because one has to learn to silence their own mind and increase their vibration to be able to pick up messages from spirit. Other critical matters he gives in-depth discussion to are sitting in circle, the structure of readings, linking with spirit and presenting in front of an audience. The last two are very important. This past April I attended a mediumship workshop held by Eileen Davies who is a tutor at Arthur Findlay College. During one exercise with a partner, I was getting all sorts of information from spirit about her present day family, but not the patner's relative who had passed on. Ms. Davies suggested that I address my partner's spirit directly by asking who am I speaking to and so I did. This was very helpful because now I got the information that I really was looking for from spirit. This coincides with what is in the book. A couple of times in this book, Mr. Parker mentions the importance of establishing a rapport with the commmunicator. In the presentation chapter, he mentions the CERT rule, a teaching method used by many mediums and explains what it is.
C - communicator
E - evidence
R - reason
T - Tie it up
At the beginning, every time I went to a workshop or to circle, I went back home and looked at Mr. Parker's book. It helped me understand what was happening and why. It has now been a little over a year that I have been sitting in circle and finally sat in a closed development circle for at least 2 months. It has been almost a year since I picked up Opening to the Other Side and all I can say is that so much of it I can relate to now but not before because I didn't experience it yet. Mr. Parker speaks from his vast experience and shares some humourous ones as well, such as being in the audience with his wife listening to a questionable medium. He also touches on ethics and the proper character of a medium. Without the proper attitude, one cannot develop to their fullest potential because mediumship requires the purest intentions.
You can't learn mediumship from a book, you need to put in the time and sit in circle. Even open circles are helpful (despite the change in number and composition of it) because it is not easy to get into a closed circle. You need to get invited or they have a space open. Closed circles require a commitment of weekly attendance usually for a certain period of time. I'm still very much a beginner and even after a year, I still find this book helpful and a very good read because now I'm experiencing things inside (and outside) circle that I can go back to the book and refer to. If you really want to learn mediumship, I suggest checking out your local spiritualist church. The SNU has a directory of spiritualist churches all over the world. Usually these churches have open circles as well as workshops. Keep in mind that it may take time to find the right circle because different mediums have different styles.
One problem I have has to do with the listing on Amazon.co.uk. It states that the date of publication is 2006. Since I'm in Canada, I first checked Amazon.ca and they only had the 2005 book, so I ordered from the UK. Anyways, to my shock the book I received was not the 2006 edition but 2005. I contacted the publisher Sterling in the US. It turns out that there is ONLY THE 2005 EDITION, there is no 2006 edition. There was no second printing. I could have simply ordered from Amazon.ca and saved some money on shipping.