Review of a Book

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Bart Stewart
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Review of a Book

Post by Bart Stewart » Mon Nov 16, 2009 2:42 am

I don't know if you guys are doing book reviews, but that might be something to do. Grist for the mill. And I know of one that would be terrific.

I've mentioned it several times on this forum because it's the book that started my interest in skepticism. That's The Loch Ness Mystery Solved by Ronald Binns, first published in Britain in 1983 (for the 50th anniversary of the Nessie myth.) It is valuable not only for vaporizing the case for Nessie, but as a teaching tool for skepticism in general. Binns is a literary critic, and boy can he write. The book is very entertaining and really holds your attention. It reads like a detective story. Not dry or dull at all. And how anybody can read it and still hold out a scintilla of hope for a Loch Ness Monster is beyond me.

I have often wondered if there was any way we skeptics could get this book back for another print run? I think the publisher was Prometheus. 2013 would mark the 80th anniversary. We have missed the niftier 75th year milestone. It all got cranked up in 1933, you see. The "ancient" sightings are all apocryphal! They are untraceable. The first Ness monster story came out in 1933, and no other year has had more reports than that one. This book is a corker, let me tell you, and it would be a great intro to skepticism for anyone, because unlike with some subjects we debunk, nobody is emotionally invested in whether or not there's a Loch Ness Monster. So they would be more likely to open their minds to a skeptical viewpoint. They could then go on to apply the philosophy to other things.

Even without a new printing the book is available from any good out-of-print search service. There are used copies on Amazon. I have a review of it that I wrote if you're interested. It just covers the basic points of the book. There have been other fine lake monster exposes (including by our own Ben Radford) but this one was the first, if I'm not mistaken. I'd say it qualifies as a "lost classic."

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Re: Review of a Book

Post by fromthehills » Mon Nov 16, 2009 11:30 am

Thanks, Bart. I'll keep my eye out for it

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Re: Review of a Book

Post by Hotair101 » Mon Nov 16, 2009 5:03 pm

Your local library should be able to get anyone a copy of it.
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