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The Strange Case of Hellish Nell: The Story of Helen Duncan and the Witch Trial of World War II by [Shandler, Nina]
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The Strange Case of Hellish Nell: The Story of Helen Duncan and the Witch Trial of World War II Kindle Edition

2.9 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Length: 314 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Description

Review

"Shandler has done well to remind us of this bizarre, forgotten case." The Times --The Times

"(t)his is true-life crime at its most gripping - espionage, séances, intrigue and witchcraft, this book has the lot... Nina Shandler uses diaries, interviews and declassified documents to tell Nell s story with aplomb." --Sunday Express

About the Author

Nina Shandler is a licensed psychologist and family therapist specializing in the concerns of women, and is the author of Estrogen: The Natural Way and Ophelia's Mom.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3386 KB
  • Print Length: 314 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press (25 Mar. 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B009K44XNM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #307,825 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

2.9 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Only read 57% of this book so far, and the court case has finished already, so not really sure what’s left. Having read numerous books on the paranormal and mediumship including Leslie Flints Voices in the dark, books on reincarnation and NDE,s and 100,s more by highly educated and intelligent people. The proof of this Phenomena I feel has been confirmed over and over.
So far has I have read into this book the impression is given that Helen Duncan had genuine abilities and was wrongly convicted and hard done by, however looking at the photo images on the internet of the ectoplasm emitted from Duncan’s mouth supposedly purporting to be spirits of the departed, the sitters would have to be on crystal meth to be taken in by these hideous characters
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was a great disappointment for me. Written by an American woman, it contains a number of factual errors which a more erudite American or, better, English person would have avoided.

Firstly, the authoress is plainly not at home in English English. A couple of examples will suffice: the word "brownstone" is usually reserved for a house in New York City or perhaps Boston. It is wrong to use it for a house situated in England. Secondly, while it is true that, in the late 19th Century, legislation was passed making the High Court of Justice and the Court of Appeal "the Supreme Court", that term is never used as such in England to refer to either of those courts; it is completely and simply wrong to refer to a judge of High Court or Court of Appeal as "a justice of the Supreme Court" of England. Ain't no such thing! [2008 addendum: there is now pending legislation which may create a real Supreme Court in the UK]

Secondly, the authoress admits that she takes the facts as known of the case of Hellish Nell, a supposed witch tried in 1944 under the now-repealed 18th Century Witchcraft Act and has then invented dialogue as she imagines it might have been spoken. This will not do, particularly when many of the conversations supposedly had are, in the book, excruciatingly but unintentionally funny.

The writer has even invented things like the mode of arrival of the prison van at the Court of Appeal (or Royal Courts of Justice in the Strand), NOT, as penned, the arrival of a "prison lorry" at the "Supreme Court". Apparently the authoress went to the present RCJ and found out how prisoners are today transported and brought into the building, which may well have been completely different in 1944.
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Format: Hardcover
An interesting story that would make a good magazine article,but at over 300 pages this book is about 250 pages too long.Too much waffle and inconsequential detail used to pad out the straight-forward details of the case.Perhaps the author has more than her fair share of free time?
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Format: Paperback
I found this very interesting as a social history as much as for the indeed strange tale of Nell,its also interesting in these days of television "celeb" psychics to note how different it was in the past, but all the basic human needs are the same, especially in times of great suffering like war, the need for reassurance that loved ones are still near by. Nell was basically abused her entire life by those wishing to exploit her but in the end its great that she in her own way triumphs. A great read on many levels including the security scare caused by Nells messages and how the powers that be choose to deal with this by having Nell brought to court under the Witchcraft Act
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