Larry Kettelkamp Jerome Beatty, Jr. - Essay

Jerome Beatty, Jr.

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

There are two approaches to ghost stories. The emotional one is to sit around a campfire at night, or lie abed in the dark, and exchange eerie tales till you're covered with goose pimples. ["Haunted Houses"] takes the second, journalistic, scientific way. It is about as spooky as a Mickey Mouse cartoon…. As a matter-of-fact look at spectral phenomena, the book serves its purpose. The final chapter is an "explanation," offering some theories to chew on…. It's all bound to be interesting to a young reader on the phantom trail, but don't look for goose pimples. (p. 26)

Jerome Beatty, Jr., in The New York Times Book Review (© 1969 by the New York Times Company; reprinted by permission), May 11, 1969.

[In Dreams] Mr. Kettelkamp begins by summing up the work of Freud and Jung shortly and simply: this is well done. His somewhat idiosyncratic interpretations of the meaning of certain objects or events observed in dreams may not command universal approval and are of doubtful value for the young. His account or recent work on eye movements during sleep, which is now being carried out in the United States, is of interest, but seems to give undue importance to theories which have not yet been proved. (p. 702)

The Times Literary Supplement (© Times Newspapers Ltd. (London) 1967; reproduced from The Times Literary Supplement by permission), June 26, 1969.