Release Date: December 28, 2012
Appalachia Mountain Folklore is a collection of 40 paranormal stories some handed down through generations and some recent ghost sightings.
The author sent me a copy of this book.
Rivers is a ghost hunter. His work is written in an engaging fashion peppered with tales of encountered spirits. Having traveled in the author’s subject area, there is an otherworldly nature to the Appalachia Mountain Range that sets it apart from other ranges like the Smokies and the Rockies. There’s a feeling of isolation and solitude and something else. That something else is an indefinable feeling of living history and Rivers conveys that sense to a beautiful effect in Appalachia Mountain Folklore.
The stories are divided into county-headed chapters. There’s the King’s Mountain in Cleveland County; intact Revolutionary War Battlefields that border North and South Carolina. There’s the Hanging Tree in Cabarrus County, where the ghostly rope robs anyone thinking to rest under the tree of peace. There’s the diligent nanny in Swain County; a kindly ghost that looks out for the children in a house.
Rivers’ style is that of a storyteller. The author fairly gives the ghost stories their due as factual sounding accounts rather than over-dramatic dangers. The nanny isn’t throwing children down stairs; she’s just taking the job she had in life very seriously; which frankly, sounds a little hellish to this earth walker. In the very historic town in which I live, there is a ghost in one of the 1812-military houses that folds laundry for eternity. I can only hope, for her sake, that it’s a residual haunting and not conscious as who wants to fold clothes for eternity?
As someone whose ancestry goes back to Virginia (later West Virginia) from the late seventeenth century, I found the folklore especially interesting. The elusive Brown Mountain Lights seem like a lightening caught in a bottle phenomena, and I wonder if my ancestors saw them and what they thought. Given the placement of Burke County, it’s a possibility. Appalachia Mountain Folklore reached into my soul and pulled out all that is geeky and obsessive about this reviewer.
Rivers is a phenomenal writer who had a great editor and knows how to engage an audience. The short chapters make for a clean and quick read. Appalachia Mountain Folklore was consumed in one delightful afternoon, under a blanket with a few steaming mugs of tea. Its one of those reads that thrills and if you have the connection, even better. It is a skill for a non-fiction work to be so fully realized and flow like the best reaches of the creative imagination.
In case you’re wondering, I adored Appalachia Mountain Folklore. Rivers’s non-fiction outing is the perfect companion for a cool Halloween on the porch or for reading in front of a roaring fire to fend off the goosebumps that will inevitably rise. Pick Appalachia Mountain Folklore up today!
If you enjoy folktales, check out my review of Micheal River’s Ghosts of the North Carolina Shores.
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