CM . . . .
Volume V Number 20 . . . . June 4, 1999
With this introduction, Sandra Collier invites the reader to explore the world of Mind Power, based on the facts and evidence she presents. Collier provides a well-rounded glimpse into the world of psychic abilities, beginning with some general facts and background information about ESP and psychic perception. Collier then discusses the scientific testing of ESP that has taken place as individuals have sought to prove its existence through controlled laboratory experiments. Several chapters examine past and current applications of ESP (psychic healing, detective work), and a chapter on some of the most notable "fakes and frauds" is countered by a profile of four famous psychics whose abilities are considered well-documented. The book concludes with ideas on how to develop one's own psychic potential through a variety of experiments, including the making and using of dowsing rods.
Mind Power is well-organized, moving in a natural flow from the general to the specific, and eventually involving the reader directly through self-experiments. The language is accessible and clear, and a brief glossary provides short explanations of specific psychic terms. Collier comes across as a believer of psychic abilities, yet she constantly challenges readers to decide for themselves whether the information she presents is true. She achieves this balance by using a casual tone and by posing thought-provoking questions, particularly in the opening chapter. Unfortunately, many of the anecdotes and case studies included are not dated and do not provide any historical context. Nor are any citations given to back up the facts and quotes.
While Collier's background as a psychotherapist lends authority to the book, the work lacks the bibliography, citations and index that would make it a useful tool for research. Nevertheless, Mind Power will appeal to young adults in grades 7 and up as a work of popular non-fiction for those interested in supernatural phenomena.
Tom Knutson, a Youth Services Librarian at Okanagan Regional Library in Vernon, BC, chairs the 1999-2000 Red Cedar Book Award Selection Committee.
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