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Weird Texas: Your Travel Guide to Texas's Local Legends and Best Kept Secrets [Hardcover]

Wesley Treat , Heather Shade , Rob Riggs
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 283 pages
  • Publisher: Sterling Publishing (NY) (25 July 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1402732805
  • ISBN-13: 978-1402732805
  • Product Dimensions: 3.1 x 23.5 x 23 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,847,331 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Just okay 3 Feb 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Some of the stories are interesting, but if you're expecting to visit any of the "weird things" you'll be hard put to find them as no actual locations are given. Fine to dip into, but disappointing as a "read".
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars  31 reviews
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fun, but needs more info 7 Feb 2006
By txsatellite - Published on
This was a fun read but sorely lacking in details. With the words "travel guide" on the cover, I expected to be able to find where these places were. At best, they gave us vague details or just a city name. This book was more ghost stories and Texas tales than travel guide.
19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Weird Review 5 Sep 2005
By T. Dillman - Published on
What an outstanding book. This was one of those "stay up all nighters"! It has absolutely GREAT graphics to go along with the multitude of funny and weird Texas stories. I'm proud to have this on my coffee table and my kids are going to get their copies for Christmas. I'm not sure what story I enjoyed most. Maybe it was the young couple leaving East Texas on Hwy 281 when they were approached in broad daylight by a high speed ball of light. Maybe it was the stories about the cannibal Karankawa Indians living in the Texas swamps. Maybe it was all the bats in Austin. Maybe it was the Bigfoot critters in the Sour Lake oil swamps. Maybe it was all the different Billy the Kids. Maybe it was all the other great stories. Whatever, ENJOY!
38 of 47 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Weird Fiction 19 Dec 2008
By RR - Published on
I was given the book "Weird Texas" as a gift and was intrigued to find in it a story about Gail, Texas.
I spent the first 18 years of my life in Gail and went through all 12 grades of school there, graduating in 1962.
At the time I lived there, the school had a higher population than the town of Gail. It is (and I emphasize the word IS) a county school that brings in students from all over the county rather than just from the town of Gail.
I was rather surprised to read in this book that "There used to be a town in Texas called Gail", and that "-the town is no more", and "-the old Gail School remains an abandoned shambles."
According to the book, this was due to a girl committing suicide in the girls bathroom, followed shortly by the principal killing himself in his office.

I was surprised to read of Gail no longer existing, especially because only two days prior to receiving the book I had driven through Gail and saw the multi million dollar school still standing with green trees and a manicured football field, and strange beings that looked somewhat like people walking around. Could I have possibly seen a portal to the past? With the ghosts of what? Perhaps last year running around? Or did Gail meet its demise a few days after I passed through?

Now I will admit the town of Gail is nothing to grab anyone's attention, with a number of closed, shuttered buildings, (it was the same when I lived there) but there are within 10 or 20 the same number of people living in Gail as there was in 1962 when I left. Granted, not the same people, but the same number.

The school is now much bigger than when I attended. Originally, there was one 3 story brick building. By the time I was in 4th grade a cafeteria and large number of classrooms had been added. They also built a modern gym, and auditorium.
I came back in 1982 for my 20 year reunion to find even greater improvements, including computers in every classroom. Today the school continues to thrive with the help of the oil taxes from the county. The old brick building that students went to school in during the 30s still stands. It has been in use and improved continuously and was never left to ruins.
Right now there are 155 students in the school, the court house still stands improved from my time and still supports the necessary; judge, sheriff, county clerk, etc that most court houses have.

As far as the nameless girl that hanged herself and the unknown principal who shot himself. There has never been a suicide, or death of any kind on or related to the school. The school has never been shut down, the town has never disappeared, and if anyone tries to "negotiate the debris in the darkness" finding your way to the principal's office, or search for the old bathroom to find the hanging student, I'm sure you will get your excitement as you are arrested within minutes after setting off the alarm system.

I enjoy reading mysteries, and weird happenings, but it would be nice if the stories are based on at least some sort of fact, and that what is put out as fact was actually checked out. The authors claim to research the stories, somehow they missed this one.
They wouldn't even have to visit Gail, just a simple internet search turns up all sorts of information about present day Gail and the School.

After reading the completely fictional account of Gail Texas, I found myself losing interest in many of the other stories in the book. Now I don't know if they are based on `real rumors' or just made up on the spot.
It's hard to get excited about "true" stories when I can get just as much entertainment from Stephen King.

I'll give this book a two thumbs down for lack of accuracy.
16 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fun But Lacking 11 Sep 2005
By Brindle - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This was a fun read and had a lot of info in the Personalized Properties and Roadside Oddities chapters that was new to me.

The Local Legends and Ancient Mysteries sections were very thorough for what was covered but did not make an effort to cover a lot of other interesting forlklore or sites in Texas.

Portions of the Unexplained Phenomena and Bizarre Beasts are previously published verbatim by Rob Riggs in his book 'In the Big Thicket'. I was hoping he had contributed something new for these sections since I have already purchased his book, but was, however, disappointed. The Haunted Places section was sadly lacking. The places that were covered were entertaining, but some of Texas' well known haunted locations (for example: La Bahia Blanca)were totally overlooked and I can only assume poor research caused this absence.

Worth the price, but don't expect a whole lot if you have already researched the areas of knowledge covered in the book.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read! 20 Oct 2011
By Jeff - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
As a newcomer to Texas I saw this in the book store and after a quick ready of a few pages decided to add it to my Amazon wish list. After it arrived I started reading it while travelling for work and quickly fell in love with it! I'm not much of a reader so the short story style of most of the anecdotes was great for my style of pick up and put down reading. Some of the things in there I've actually seen or am planning to go see now as a result of the book. Very much worthwhile!
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