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Vital Signs: A Complete Guide to the Crop Circle Mystery [Paperback]

Andy Thomas
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

3 July 1998
This is a comprehensive and compelling overview of the FACTS behind the beautiful patterns found in fields around the world each year. It uncovers their fascinating history and provides a rational and convincing case that a large proportion of crop formations are far more than the human pranks sceptics claim. The many possible explanations and their implications are explored, together with the physical and statistical evidence, reports of astonishing paranormal experiences, aerial phenomena and the extraordinary effect these portentous glyphs have had on the lives of observers and researchers. Could it be the crop circles are vital signs for a crucial moment in history?

Product details

  • Paperback: 140 pages
  • Publisher: SB Publications (3 July 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1857701550
  • ISBN-13: 978-1857701555
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 19.8 x 0.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 345,225 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

Andy Thomas is the author of the acclaimed The Truth Agenda and Conspiracies, among many other titles, and is one of the UK's best-known authors and lecturers on unexplained mysteries and global cover-ups. He speaks extensively in Britain and abroad at both 'alternative' and mainstream events, and his books have been widely praised as the finest available overviews of their subjects.

For almost twenty-five years, Andy has investigated many enduring enigmas, including crop circles, UFOs, ancient prophecies, and a multitude of classic conspiracy theories, always finding tantalising middle-ground to evoke animated discussion. He has appeared on many popular radio and TV shows including major UK spots on Richard and Judy, Esther, GMTV, The One Show and Sky TV's hit series Pineapple Dance Studios. Andy has also featured in programmes around the globe, as well as in the US theatrically-released documentary Crop Circles: Quest For Truth.

Andy's latest book, Conspiracies: The Facts - The Theories -The Evidence, produced by Watkins Publishing, is widely available in the UK, US and Australia, with other language editions in the pipeline, including Chinese and Czech. Meanwhile, his much-praised investigation into the mystery realms, The Truth Agenda: Making Sense of Unexplained Mysteries, Global Cover-Ups and Visions for a New Era, has recently been expanded and updated for its third edition. The Truth Agenda has been a hit in both 'fringe' and mainstream circles, and was adopted as a sociology textbook at Canada's Vancouver Island University

Andy is author of seven other books exploring the unexplained, including Fields of Mystery, Quest for Contact (with the late Paul Bura), and the classic Vital Signs: A Complete Guide to the Crop Circle Mystery, which has been described by many as the definitive guide to the circle controversy and was nominated for Kindred Spirit magazine's 2002 Best Book award. His book An Introduction to Crop Circles is another consistent seller and was updated in 2011. Andy is also author of four books on Sussex local history. He has written for many journals and magazines, including Kindred Spirit and New Dawn, and he regularly contributes to the popular alternative journal Nexus Magazine.

A very busy lecturer, Andy is renowned for his striking and persuasive presentations on the unexplained, alternative views and conspiracy theories. He speaks extensively across England and has also presented in other parts of the world, including America, Australia, Brazil, Peru and many European countries, giving over a thousand lectures during his more than two decades of ongoing speaking engagements.

Andy's presentations have brought often marginalised subjects into public venues to great success, and he regularly addresses both alternative groups and also established organisations such as Mensa, The National Trust, Women's Institute, Rotary, Round Table and Probus, to name but a few. In 2009, Andy spoke at a Rotarian conference to an audience of 1,500 people.

Andy is founder of the Changing Times truth and mysteries group (www.changingtimes.org.uk) and is also co-presenter of the celebrated Glastonbury Symposium, one of the UK's longest-running alternative events (www.glastonburysymposium.co.uk).

Andy's always balanced and perceptive views on unusual subjects have become widely respected for giving credibility to areas not generally given the coverage they truly deserve.

More information about Andy, with news, reviews, videos and details of forthcoming lectures can be found at his website: www.truthagenda.org

Product Description


A superb introduction to the subject -- Prediction, Feb. 2000

By far the most complete and thorough survey of the crop circle phenomenon which has so far appeared -- New View, Autumn 1998

If you are intrigued by the mystery of crop circles, this book tells you everything you need to know -- Nexus Magazine, Feb/Mar. 2000

Loads of incredible info -- News of the World, Aug. 16, 1998

Magnificently illustrated... An enjoyable, informative read... Not to be missed -- New Humanity, Dec. 1998/Jan. 1999

One of the best books on crop circles to emerge in years... Highly recommended -- UFO Magazine, Jan/Feb 1999

One of the definitive reference books for the crop circle phenomenon -- Kindred Spirit, Spring 1999

Vital Signs delivers all the information a reader could possibly desire on the subject -- Sussex Express, Aug.7, 1998

From the Publisher

Andy Thomas is one of England's most prominent crop circle researchers and this book, his third and most comprehensive on the subject, has been described by many reviewers as the definitive guide to this mysterious phenomenon. The success of Vital Signs can be gauged by the fact that it is now into its second reprint less than two years since it was first published (revised slightly since its initial edition). It continues to be one of our strongest sellers.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fine guide to the crop circle mystery 1 July 2003
Books on crop circles are a bit like calendars. They seem to date. That's mostly because as each year goes by there are new formations to photograph in a phenomenon which is forever evolving as far as patterns and complexity go. And it's no use having a crop circle book without photos. Andy Thomas's book,as any other of course, cannot avoid that. That said, this is a very well written book (try putting it down if you are only slightly interested on this phenomenon) and perhaps the best overview of the phenomenon one could have. Yes, the photos are good and very well produced, both black and white and colour.But what lifts this book is the sane approach which the author brings to this subject which in recent years has attracted not so much mainstream scientists - extremely few - but a plethora of New Age or at least quasi-New Age followers. Thomas covers in some detail all the main chapters in the history of the subject together with the scientific work and the effects on equipment and people. Also individuals and reseachers closely connected with the subject. He also covers in an intelligent fashion the problem of hoaxing which has caused so much trouble over the years. No, he does not give you all the answers - nobody can. But this book can be read with relish and considerable enjoyment by both newcomers and veterens in this mysterious but beautiful subject.
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His easy style makes this book hard to put down without a swoon at the amazing configurations he illustrates and discusses. Thoroughly recommended for an excellent sympathetic introduction to the crop circle phenomenon.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good But Flawed 8 Aug 2003
As an overview of the history of the crop circle saga, this functions very well. Thomas' style is sharp and to the point, and very readable. It is also lavishly illustrated. My only caveat is Thomas' relentless debunking of the possibility that crop circles could be man-made, laboured to the point of tedium.
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The book is highly interesting 15 Oct 2000
By A Customer
I think that the book is great. It explores so deep into the subject crop circles that I recommend it for anyone doing a report or just looking for a good paranormal mystery book to read through.
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Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
38 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A definitive history of the crop circles 2 May 2003
By Michael M - Published on Amazon.com
When Andy Thomas' Vital Signs first came out in its UK edition in 1998, it was quickly seen as one of the best historical surveys of the post-1978 crop circle phenomenon. As a longtime editor of the journal of the Southern Circular Research group (now known as Swirled News at [...] as well as a top-notch researcher himself, Thomas had been looking long and hard at the crop formations, from every angle, both inside and outside the glyphs. With great persistence, a feisty spirit, and often hilarious drama at such venues as the annual Glastonbury Symposium and the International UFO Congress, Thomas remains one of the fiercest defenders of the true crop circles, and a defender as well of the hard research that's been done on the phenomenon over the years. I'm happy to see that Vital Signs has come out in an updated version in the US, incorporating the glyphs from the intervening years, including the 2001 season. Readers unfamiliar with the first edition will want to buy this version, one of the best overviews of the phenomenon.
Vital Signs begins with a painstaking presentation of the ground-level data, including the unusual layering and swirls of the downed crop, while providing important details of the scientific work that's been done analyzing the effects on the stalks and soil, establishing the reality of the phenomenon beyond all the hoaxing. It then goes elaborately into what's seen from up above: the pictorial shapes and beautiful geometries, uncovering the mathematics encoded in the shapes. Along the way, we also learn of the strange balls of light (BOLs) seen hovering over the fields and of the effects of crop circle energies on electronic equipment and the biological systems of humans and animals. We're treated too to eyewitness accounts of crop circles forming, including the important recent case in Amsterdam when Nancy Talbott-a key scientific researcher and member of the BLT Research Team-along with Robbert van der Broeke, saw three powerful tubes of light descend into a bean field outside the van der Broeke home, only to discover a few minutes later that a structured crop circle had appeared in the field. It's stories like these that lead one to believe that crop circles are a key part of the worldwide UFO phenomenon.
One of the great strengths of Vital Signs is the year-by-year chronology it provides, as well as the beautiful photographic gallery that accompanies the text, including a central color section. It's a chronicle that not only describes the fascinating evolution of the crop formations over the years, but also the rabid atmosphere of controversy that has grown up around them: are they manmade, anomalous, or a mixture of both? How can you tell the real from the hoaxed and what's the percentage of each? Are the simple ones the true phenomenon, or are some of the more complex formations real as well? As Thomas juggles the assertions and denials on both sides of the fence-as well as the natural, supernatural, and ufological theories as to how they're made-what finally emerges is that, if any of them are not manmade (and much evidence supports the idea that many, perhaps most of them are not), then we have a genuine mystery that's growing in scope around the world. However, it's only ongoing, careful research that has the power to cut through the fog of disinformation. Vital Signs is a great introduction for those confronting the crop circles for the very first time, as well as a primary resource for long-time researchers still dazzled by the mysterious signs in the fields.
-Michael Miley is a contributing editor to UFO Magazine (US).
30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Photographs, Light on the Text 15 Mar 2006
By Robert David STEELE Vivas - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
EDIT of 30 Dec 09 to add pointer to all my reviews: Phi Beta Iota the Public Intelligence Blog now offers all of my reviews sorted into 98 categories including Intelligence Extraterrestial (13 books, all with links back to Amazon) and Consciousness and Social IQ (127 books) and Cosmos & Destiny (15 books).

This is one of two first-rate books on crop circles and their implications for mankind that I recommend. This one is the "coffee table" book, with an absolutely sensational collection of clear color photographs that provide what I believe may be the single best collection of distinct crop circles at distinct times and places on the planet.

This book is however light on the text and the thinking. It should be read in conjunction with Opening Minds: A Journey of Extraordinary Encounters, Crop Circles, and Resonance by Simeon Hein, Ph.D.

I am persuaded of three things by these books taken together and my various other readings:

1) The Earth is alive and everything on it is a web of life that has a global consciousness--the butterfly effect and the mind over matter effects are real.

2) There exist other forms of intelligence at least equal if not vastly superior to ours elsewhere, and I speculate from some of this reading that we are a "diversity enhancer" for a larger constellation of planets, and that we may also be failing a longer-term test to determine if we are ready for inter-planetary interaction.

3) There are, between books like this and the many very intelligent people that tend NOT to go into politics, clear possibilities for our rising to the challenge. We simply have not focused as a Collective Intelligence or World Brain, and we need to do so before we destroy our planet and our species.

Both books are almost mesmerizing.
14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Crop Circle Encyclopedia 14 Oct 2003
By Denni Clarke, author of "Crop Circle Wisdom" - Published on Amazon.com
Vital Signs is the most comprehensive guide to the beautiful and enigmatic crop circles ever written. Andy writes in a very clear and easy to read style, putting together an enormous amount of information, combined with loads of wonderful photos, many of them in color.
This book is a "must read" for any crop circle enthusiast.
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful and Thought-Provoking 12 July 2005
By Simeon Hein - Published on Amazon.com
This is a graphically rich and comprehensive book full of beautiful photos and big ideas. Thomas stimulates our imagination and wonder about this mysterious phenomenon. However, like some other books in this genre, he fails to seriously address the issue of manmade crop formations. Nonewithstanding what some other reviewers on this page have said, manmade formations are a large, signficant, and important part of the crop circle scene. As many of these land art designs produce strange effects, like camera and battery failure, previously attributed only to "genuine" formations, books like Vital Signs need to address this aspect of the mystery, rather than simply dismissing manmade formations as "hoaxes." That being said, readers are bound to find this book a worthwhile and lasting investment.

(Dr. Simeon Hein is the author of OPENING MINDS: A Journey of Extraordinary Encounters, Crop Circles, and Resonance and PLANETARY INTELLIGENCE: 101 Easy Steps to Energy, Well-Being, and Natural Insight)
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Messages with meaning 9 Dec 2010
By Dave - Published on Amazon.com
This has been happening for thirty years, and the commercial media mostly ignores it. Money is nothing in the non-material world. Spend some time on your house, your soul.
All that you are is within your soul, it's what you take with you when your present life is over.
What do you want to be when you grow up?
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