I haven’t written about ghost stories in a little while, so I figured I’d stumble down memory lane tonight and go back to the topic. No, the stumbling has nothing to do with Keystone Light. Or Pabst Blue Ribbon.

When I was in 3rd grade, I was browsing in the school library (do you remember those? They have books in them!) when I came across a book that would keep me awake for years (along with Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark). It was:

Gee, I wonder what THIS book is about?

Me, being the gullible sap that I was, decided to check it out. The stories were fascinating, and it featured illustrations from Stephen Gammell, the guy who makes H.R. Giger’s work look like Disney stuff.

The above illustration was included in the first story of the book, The Noisy Ghosts of Calvados Castle.

A family living in an old French castle has to deal with (you guessed it) ghosts.

At first they just hear rapping on the walls and stomping up the staircases, but eventually it escalates to wild screams and moans. Then to flinging windows open and tearing Bibles to pieces.

Honestly, since it takes place in France, I’m surprised the family didn’t just surrender to the spirits and move away. Instead, they invited a priest over to put the haunting to rest.

Obviously that didn’t work because I don’t think you can force a ghost to go down on you.

ANYWAY, even though this was one of my favorite books as a kid, it wasn’t exactly Ambien for me. Just look at the names of the other tales featured:

No, “A Long Island Spirit” is not a reference to Long Island Iced Tea.

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