Monday, December 12, 2011

How many of you remember TIME-Life's 'Mysteries of the Unknown' series?

A few days ago, I started drafting a “bucket list” that I plan to release in this space soon after the first of the new year. As you might have suspected, I’ve included more than a few reading goals that I’d like to accomplish at some point in my life.

While brainstorming for ideas, it occurred to me that there’s an awesome book list that I’ve always intended to tackle but have never mentioned on my blog, the Time-Life Books “Mysteries of the Unknown" series.

Many of you will probably remember this best-selling series of books on the paranormal and the unexplained. These books were published between 1987 and 1991 and were heavily advertised on television, especially late at night. They were extremely popular and broke all of Time-Life Books' sales records.

To date, I’ve only got one of the 33 volumes in the series, “Mysterious Places.” My old junior high school buddy, Tim Jennings, gave me a copy of it for Christmas when we were in the ninth grade, I think. Later in life, I ran across a number of these books in the library in Evergreen and have seen complete sets of them for sale in the classified section of The Mobile Press-Register.

Now, any of you that really know me understand that I am probably the most skeptical person that you will ever meet. When someone starts talking about ghosts and UFOs, my first instinct is to doubt what they are describing and to look for other, more logical explainations. That is not to say that I don’t find such topics interesting. In fact, I find them extremely interesting.

Topics covered in the Mysteries of the Uknown series include alien abduction, acupuncture, Atlantis, the Bell witch, cryptozoology, dreams, ESP, exorcisms, extraterrestrial encounters, ghost ships, Harry Houdini, hypnosis, levitation, the Loch Ness Monster, medicine men, the Nazca lines, out-of-body experiences, poltergeists, psychic powers, the pyramids, Rasputin, reincarnation, the Roswell incident, sea monsters, secret societies, Stonehenge, Uri Geller and the zodiac.

What follows is a complete list of the titles of the volumes in the series:

1. Alien Encounters
2. Ancient Wisdom and Secret Sects
3. Cosmic Connections
4. Cosmic Duality
5. Dreams and Dreaming
6. Earth Energies
7. Eastern Mysteries
8. Hauntings
9. Magical Arts
10. Master Index and Illustrated Symbols

11. Mind Over Matter
12. Mysterious Creatures
13. Mysterious Lands and Peoples
14. Mystic Places Discusses
15. Mystic Quests
16. Phantom Encounters
17. Powers of Healing
18. Psychic Powers
19. Psychic Voyages
20. Search for Immortality

21. Search for the Soul
22. Secrets of Alchemists
23. Spirit Summonings
24. The Mind and Beyond
25. The Mysterious World
26. The Mystical Year
27. The Psychics
28. The UFO Phenomenon
29. Time and Space
30. Transformations

31. Utopian Visions
32. Visions and Prophecies
33. Witches and Witchcraft

In the end, how many of you a familiar with this series? How many of these books have you read? Which did you like or dislike? Which would you recommend and why? Let us know in the comment section below.

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