Customer Reviews


5 Reviews
5 star:
 (2)
4 star:
 (2)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating character, well written account
As the author points out in the introduction, Daniel Douglas Home is truly an extraordinary character, and his story is strange enough for fiction, whether you accept his psychic claims or not.
Lauded by the notables of the day - writers, politicians, international royalty and nobility - Home is distinctive in being the only major figure in Spiritualism not to be...
Published on 24 Mar 2006 by Steven Haddon

versus
6 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, but how accurate?
The author of this book is apparently a scholar and historian (according to the book blurbs) which makes the fact that he makes two egregious errors all the more curious. On page 108 he writes that Lady Shelley, the daughter-in-law of the poet (Percy Shelley), was the creator of "Frankenstein". In fact, it was the wife of Percy Shelley who was the creator of Frankenstein...
Published on 19 Jun 2009 by Laura Knight-Jadczyk


Most Helpful First | Newest First

18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating character, well written account, 24 Mar 2006
By 
Steven Haddon (Edinburgh, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
As the author points out in the introduction, Daniel Douglas Home is truly an extraordinary character, and his story is strange enough for fiction, whether you accept his psychic claims or not.
Lauded by the notables of the day - writers, politicians, international royalty and nobility - Home is distinctive in being the only major figure in Spiritualism not to be convincingly exposed as a fraud. The question of his authenticity makes the whole tale all the more intriguing. This is definitely for unsolved mystery lovers, though: although Lamont explores possible explanations for Home's feats, there's no definitive answer either way.
Inevitably, the supernatural element is something that any writer on this topic has to deal with, one way or the other, and I was prepared for a bias to scepticism or belief. Lamont handles this very well, though: although his stance is laid out clearly towards the end, he doesn't shirk from describing both the unexplained elements of the story (of which there are many), and those that are manifestly explainable in a non-supernatural sense.
I had already done a little research on Home (purely out of interest) when I came to read this book, but it was still a page-turner, both for the central character and for the many not-so-incidental characters he encounters in his bizarre life. If you've never heard of him, after reading this you'll seriously wonder why.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars This book is one of my all time favourite publications, and launched me into a world of ..., 11 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The First Psychic: The Peculiar Mystery of a Victorian Wizard (Paperback)
This book is one of my all time favourite publications, and launched me into a world of seances and the esoteric from which I don't think I shall ever emerge. Well done Dr Lamont, a wonderful read, diligently researched, and entertainingly presented.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating, 28 April 2014
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The First Psychic: The Peculiar Mystery of a Victorian Wizard (Paperback)
I can certainly recommend this as a fascinating insight into Victorian weirdness but strangely it just seems to leave you hanging for a bit more about what was really going on.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Iwas also pleased with the speedy delivery and the good packaging, 11 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The First Psychic: The Peculiar Mystery of a Victorian Wizard (Paperback)
A facinatinng book as I had not heard of this first victorian Wizard before. Iwas also pleased with the speedy delivery and the good packaging.

I thank you

Anne B.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, but how accurate?, 19 Jun 2009
By 
Laura Knight-Jadczyk (France) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The First Psychic: The Peculiar Mystery of a Victorian Wizard (Paperback)
The author of this book is apparently a scholar and historian (according to the book blurbs) which makes the fact that he makes two egregious errors all the more curious. On page 108 he writes that Lady Shelley, the daughter-in-law of the poet (Percy Shelley), was the creator of "Frankenstein". In fact, it was the wife of Percy Shelley who was the creator of Frankenstein and this is so widely known one wonders how he could have made this mistake.

Then, on page 163 he refers to the "deceased husband, Edgar Allan Poe", of Sarah Helen Whitman. In fact, Whitman and Poe never married, though they were engaged and a mistaken announcement of their nuptials was published in January 1849. (See: Silverman, Kenneth. Edgar A. Poe: Mournful and Never-ending Remembrance. New York: Harper Perennial, 1991: 385-388. ISBN 0060923318)

So, having noted these two errors, I cannot help but wonder how many other errors this book might contain which are not part of my own knowledge base but which might be caught by others? In short, I'm afraid that this may not be a very trustworthy account even if it is entertainingly written and does cover the life of Daniel Home fairly comprehensively.

I would have liked to have seen the book include more extensive accounts of Home's seances written by contemporaries instead of bits and pieces here and there.

I also find it interesting to note that, despite the abundant evidence for psychic phenomena that the author recounts, as well as the overwhelming evidence of social denial, which is acknowledged and discussed more or less rationally, the author himself believes that Home was a charlatan.

The book paints a rather unattractive portrait of many scientific and literary individuals who one might otherwise have thought were open-minded and honest. At the end, despite his declared attempt to write a "balanced" bio, one even questions the honesty of the author.

Still, as I said, it can be entertaining and, even if one cannot wholly rely on the facts presented, this book can be a jumping off point for further research on one of the most interesting figures/events in the history of the paranormal.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

The First Psychic: The Peculiar Mystery of a Victorian Wizard
The First Psychic: The Peculiar Mystery of a Victorian Wizard by Dr. Peter Lamont (Paperback - 3 Aug 2006)
Used & New from: £0.01
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews