100 books like The Super Natural

By Whitley Strieber, Jeffrey J. Kripal,

Here are 100 books that The Super Natural fans have personally recommended if you like The Super Natural. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Passport to Magonia: From Folklore to Flying Saucers

Neil Nixon Author Of UFOs, Aliens and the Battle for the Truth: A Short History of UFOlogy

From my list on making you an expert on UFOs.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been writing for publication since I was a student, crudely the writing has been a way of medicating the fact I’m incurably curious about a range of things and I’ve also suffered from an over-production of ideas my whole life. Wrestling this under control into writing and live speaking where the subjects must fit within a title, word limit, or running time for a talk has been helpful, beyond which the whole writing career has been a trade off between things I’ve chosen to do because they matter a lot to me, and the occasional accepting of an offer I thought too good to refuse.

Neil's book list on making you an expert on UFOs

Neil Nixon Why did Neil love this book?

Many books on this subject have dated, this title, first published in 1969 remains a classic and highly influential.

It argues that twentieth-century claims of UFO sightings and meetings with aliens fit a wider pattern taking in folklore and our history of strange encounters of all kinds.

A hugely influential book that has influenced a library’s worth of other writing but still an ideal beginners guide to anyone seeking to understand where the strangest modern-day claims might fit into the bizarre stories humans have been telling each other throughout history.

By Jacques Vallee,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Passport to Magonia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Our age has generated, and continues to generate, mythical material almost unparalleled in quantity and quality in the rich records of human imagination. More precisely, people have very frequently reported the observation of wonderful aerial objects, variously designated as flying saucers, unidentified flying objects (UFOs), and so on. But investigators have neglected to recognize one important perspective of the phenomenon: the fact that beliefs identical to those held today have recurred throughout recorded history and under forms best adapted to the believer's country, race, and social regime.

Emissaries from these supernatural abodes come to earth, sometimes under human form and…


Book cover of Daimonic Reality: A Field Guide to the Otherworld

Joshua Cutchin Author Of Thieves in the Night: A Brief History of Supernatural Child Abductions

From my list on rethinking UFOs and the paranormal.

Why am I passionate about this?

Joshua Cutchin has written seven books. If you find yourself beside him on an airplane and ask what he writes about, he’ll say, “Speculative non-fiction.” If he warms up, he’ll explain that he writes about supernatural mysteries—UFOs, Bigfoot, ghosts, etc.—all through the lens of folklore. A suspicion that all these phenomena are connected undergirds his writing. In addition to his books, Joshua regularly contributes to essay collections and, in 2019, appeared on the hit History Channel series Ancient Aliens. Joshua has appeared on countless paranormal programs, including Coast to Coast AM. He regularly speaks at events nationwide, most recently Rice University’s 2023 Archives of the Impossible conference.

Joshua's book list on rethinking UFOs and the paranormal

Joshua Cutchin Why did Joshua love this book?

Contemporary thought surrounding the supernatural has become rigid, mired in demands for “proof” like photographs and video recordings.

These phenomena rarely offer anything so compelling. Their genesis lies more in imagination than the material world, straddling the line between both. To better understand what might be going on, this rigid thinking must be broken.

Few books do that as elegantly as Patrick Harpur’s Daimonic Reality. Drawing upon Classical philosophy and Jungian psychology, Harpur obliterates the usual traps of distinction we rely upon: internal versus external, objective versus subjective.

While Harpur’s interpretation remains speculative, anyone with an open mind will find themselves liberated by the ideas he proposes. Daimonic Reality offers supernatural phenomena a foothold into the realm of the possible simply by acknowledging their impossibility.

By Patrick Harpur,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Daimonic Reality as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Lake monsters, Yetis, UFOs, crop circles, guardian angels and visions of the Virgin Mary can all be described as apparitions, and this book weaves together an account of them. It argues that only in the last three centuries or so, and only in Western culture, they're as lively as ever. But, the author suggests, they can be made intelligible again by appealing to a different world-view. Three of the chief models for understanding mind and world are Jung's "Collective World", which is used to illuminate the links between the apparently disparate experiences being dealt with.


Book cover of The Trickster and the Paranormal

Joshua Cutchin Author Of Thieves in the Night: A Brief History of Supernatural Child Abductions

From my list on rethinking UFOs and the paranormal.

Why am I passionate about this?

Joshua Cutchin has written seven books. If you find yourself beside him on an airplane and ask what he writes about, he’ll say, “Speculative non-fiction.” If he warms up, he’ll explain that he writes about supernatural mysteries—UFOs, Bigfoot, ghosts, etc.—all through the lens of folklore. A suspicion that all these phenomena are connected undergirds his writing. In addition to his books, Joshua regularly contributes to essay collections and, in 2019, appeared on the hit History Channel series Ancient Aliens. Joshua has appeared on countless paranormal programs, including Coast to Coast AM. He regularly speaks at events nationwide, most recently Rice University’s 2023 Archives of the Impossible conference.

Joshua's book list on rethinking UFOs and the paranormal

Joshua Cutchin Why did Joshua love this book?

Paranormal literature contains both entry-level texts and advanced reading.

George P. Hansen’s The Trickster and the Paranormal firmly occupies the latter category; it is best digested a paragraph at a time. Anyone taking the plunge is rewarded with an erudite argument for understanding the paranormal, one yielding ever-increasing dividends the more it is applied: everything supernatural, from the phenomenon itself to those who study it, is subject to the influence of a subversive Jungian archetype known as The Trickster.

This is not an entity but rather a set of pervasive characteristics manifesting independently: transgressive, self-negating, liminal, playful, and, dare it be said, dangerous. Hansen’s speculation makes a little more sense of the insensible, including why irrefutable evidence of the paranormal yet eludes the scientific establishment.

By George P Hansen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Trickster and the Paranormal as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Book by Hansen, George P


Book cover of King of Morning, Queen of Day

Joshua Cutchin Author Of Thieves in the Night: A Brief History of Supernatural Child Abductions

From my list on rethinking UFOs and the paranormal.

Why am I passionate about this?

Joshua Cutchin has written seven books. If you find yourself beside him on an airplane and ask what he writes about, he’ll say, “Speculative non-fiction.” If he warms up, he’ll explain that he writes about supernatural mysteries—UFOs, Bigfoot, ghosts, etc.—all through the lens of folklore. A suspicion that all these phenomena are connected undergirds his writing. In addition to his books, Joshua regularly contributes to essay collections and, in 2019, appeared on the hit History Channel series Ancient Aliens. Joshua has appeared on countless paranormal programs, including Coast to Coast AM. He regularly speaks at events nationwide, most recently Rice University’s 2023 Archives of the Impossible conference.

Joshua's book list on rethinking UFOs and the paranormal

Joshua Cutchin Why did Joshua love this book?

If the paranormal is somewhat interiorized and subject to the fluid expectations of culture—as many of the above books argue—then can fiction further our understanding?

Enter King of Morning, Queen of Day, perhaps the best fictional representation of fairies ever written. Ian McDonald follows three generations interacting with these intelligences, who are just as slippery and ineffable as their real-life counterparts. Slight misgivings regarding the third act notwithstanding, McDonald’s execution is practically flawless, weaving together actual folklore with contemporary speculation.

Yet the core of his book is decidedly human, reminding us that—no matter how much we talk of UFOs from outer space or fairies at the bottom of the garden—their importance derives entirely from what their existence says about us.

By Ian McDonald,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked King of Morning, Queen of Day as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Three generations of Irish women--Emily, Jessica, and Enye--struggle to tame the ancient magical powers that imbue the countryside and themselves, each with varying degrees of success


Book cover of A Demon-Haunted Land: Witches, Wonder Doctors, and the Ghosts of the Past in Post-WWII Germany

Eric Kurlander Author Of Hitler's Monsters: A Supernatural History of the Third Reich

From my list on Nazism and the occult.

Why am I passionate about this?

I would trace the genesis of Hitler’s Monsters to three distinct influences. The first was my childhood love of Golden, Silver, and Bronze Age comics––Batman, Superman, Captain America, The Avengers, The Fantastic Four––which, as illustrated by the Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, are replete with themes of Nazi occultism and border science. The second was a conversation with my thesis advisor early in graduate school, when he noted that he was advising a dissertation on German occultism (Science for the Soul). The third influence was observing the mid-2000s resurgence in rightwing populism across Europe and North America, seemingly fueled by recourse to esoteric and supernatural thinking. The rest, as they say, is history.

Eric's book list on Nazism and the occult

Eric Kurlander Why did Eric love this book?

Although there is no longer a shortage of scholarship on the occult or supernatural before 1945, Monica Black’s Demon Haunted Land is the first major history in English to investigate the afterlife of these cultural and intellectual traditions in the early years of the West German Federal Republic.

Beautifully written and based on extensive archival research, a Demon Haunted Land shows how witchcraft, the occult, and a belief in miracles played an important role, alongside democratic stabilization and the so-called “Economic Miracle”, in helping Germans work through the trauma of defeat and legacies of the Third Reich in a new postwar reality.

By Monica Black,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Demon-Haunted Land as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Evocative. . . . Epic. . . . Chock-full of colorful anecdotes and charismatic figures, A Demon-Haunted Land not only offers a brilliant rethinking of postwar German history, but also asks us to see the irrational as an integral part of modernity.” ―Boston Review

In the aftermath of World War II, a succession of mass supernatural events swept through war-torn Germany. A messianic faith healer rose to extraordinary fame, prayer groups performed exorcisms, and enormous crowds traveled to witness apparitions of the Virgin Mary. Most strikingly, scores of people accused their neighbors of witchcraft, and found themselves in turn hauled…


Book cover of The Men Who Stare at Goats

Tone Milazzo Author Of The Faith Machine

From my list on spies in strange places.

Why am I passionate about this?

Spies are everywhere across the panorama of fictional tropes, in fantasy, science fiction, horror, and historical fiction. Spies are like salt. No matter the genre, drop a little espionage into the mix, and it tastes better. There’s an inherent complexity to a spy, a dichotomy baked into the profession, simultaneously a criminal and an agent of the government. A spy could be a one-man-army, a smooth-talker, or someone inside your computer network, but no matter who they really are, they’re never who they seem. The spy plays with identity, loyalty, and integrity in ways that the worst of us do but is safely compartmentalized in fiction for our enjoyment.

Tone's book list on spies in strange places

Tone Milazzo Why did Tone love this book?

Set in the height of the Cold War, The Men Who Stare at Goats is the story of the US Army’s psychic warfare unit, the First Earth Battalion. These self-declared “warrior monks” trained in remote viewing and aspired to psychic slay capra with the force of their concentration.

Unlike the rest of the books on my list, The Men Who Stare at Goats is non-fiction. The bulk of the material in these pages are interviews with people in the First Earth Battalion.

Reading this book made me question the reality of psychic phenomena. Is there something to it? Or was this the result of a Soviet PSYOP (psychological operation, not psychic operation) to make the American military-industrial complex waste a lot of money?

By Jon Ronson,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Men Who Stare at Goats as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Often funny, sometimes chilling and always thought-provoking, journalist Jon Ronson's Sunday Times bestseller The Men Who Stare at Goats is a story so unbelievable it has to be true.

In 1979 a secret unit was established by the most gifted minds within the US Army. Defying all known military practice - and indeed the laws of physics - they believed that a soldier could adopt a cloak of invisibility, pass cleanly through walls, and, perhaps most chillingly, kill goats just by staring at them.

They were the First Earth Battalion. And they really weren't joking. What's more, they're back and…


Book cover of Magic and Mystery in Tibet

David Thorpe Author Of Hybrids

From my list on books that changed my life.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love books that boggle my mind. Take me away from mundane reality. That’s the kind of book I like to write.

David's book list on books that changed my life

David Thorpe Why did David love this book?

Looking around me as a young man I found a grey world that had been stripped of all its glory and fabulousness by the exploitation and utilitarianism of human beings. 

Alexandra David-Neel was an amazing explorer. She was the first European woman to meet the Dalai Lama and in 1924 became the first to enter the forbidden Tibetan capital, Lhasa. She had already spent a decade travelling through China, living in a cave on the Tibetan border, where she learned about Buddhism from hermits, mystics, and bandits. 

She describes in this book how these people learnt such seemingly impossible skills such as telepathy, defying gravity, running for days without food or drink or sleep, and surviving with hardly any clothes in the subzero Himalayan blizzards. 

This magical world vanished when the Chinese invaded in 1947. 

To think that this miraculous way of life existed in the same century as me…

By Madame Alexandra David-Neel,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Magic and Mystery in Tibet as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

For centuries Tibet has been known as the last home of mystery, the hidden, sealed land, where ancient mysteries still survive that have perished in the rest of the Orient. Many men have written about Tibet and its secret lore, but few have actually penetrated it to learn its ancient wisdom. Among those few was Madame Alexandra David-Neel, a French orientalist. A practicing Buddhist, a profound historian of religion, and linguist, she actually lived in Tibet for more than 14 years. She had the great honor of being received by the Dalai Lama; she studied philosophical Buddhism and Tibetan Tantra…


Book cover of The Occultists

David Allen Voyles Author Of Tales from the Hearse: Thirteen Tales of Spine-Tingling Terror

From my list on horror you’ve probably never heard of but should.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have loved Halloween horror my whole life. As a teacher of literature, I always looked forward to October when I had a green light to incorporate the greatest horror authors into my lessons. The desire to share new horror stories did not fade when I retired. There are so many wonderful new authors of horror it’s impossible to read them all! But there’s also a lot of trash out there—I know, I’ve read it! My lifelong love of spooky things and my background in literature make me confident that I won’t be steering readers wrong when they look to me for the best new reads in horror.

David's book list on horror you’ve probably never heard of but should

David Allen Voyles Why did David love this book?

I love a good coming-of-age story coupled with supernatural events in a period-piece setting, and that’s exactly what Polly Schattel serves up. Her cinematic style of story-telling (her filmmaking past is obvious) offers up a vivid picture of her protagonist, young Max Grahame as he journeys literally across the country from his home in Georgia and metaphorically as he discovers more about who he is and what his budding supernatural talents entail. Schattel is also a master of creating rich supporting characters ranging from the other children whom Max meets as he first undergoes his occult training to the mysterious adults whose spiritual machinations are woven into the history of this turn-of-the-century setting. This book begs to be made into a movie, but Schattel helps you create one in your head.

By Polly Schattel,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Occultists as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Sssshhhhhhhh...

For Edwardian-era spiritualists and illusionists, silence is more than a strategy; it's a way of life. And when Max Grahame, a bullied, small-town teen, discovers a secretive world of occultism and séances right under his nose, he can hardly contain his excitement.

But as Max begins his conjurer's lessons in earnest, his newfound knowledge exposes the group's dark and deeply sinister designs, leading a game of supernatural cat and mouse that takes him from the ancient hills of rural Georgia and the mystic plains of the Midwest to fin-de-siècle Manhattan...and beyond.

Impeccably researched and wildly imaginative, The Occultists is…


Book cover of The Compleat Crow

William Meikle Author Of Carnacki: Heaven and Hell

From my list on occult detective collections.

Why am I passionate about this?

Even before I found Lovecraft and Stephen King and my world turned, I was raised on Doyle, Wells, Hodgson, and Robert Louis Stevenson which gave me both a love of the "gentleman detective" era and a deep love of the late Victorian/early Edwardian historical period in general. Once you merge that with my abiding interest in all things weird and spooky, you can see where a lot of my stories come from. There seems to be quite a burgeoning market for this kind of mixing of detection and supernatural, and I intend to write more... maybe even a lot more.

William's book list on occult detective collections

William Meikle Why did William love this book?

Lumley is steeped in both the occult detective and the Lovecraftian tradition, and it shows most clearly in this set of pulpy occult detective stories featuring his cerebral-yet-tough Titus Crow, and involving wild flights of fancy in time and space that also arguably show some influence from Doctor Who. We get a lovely creepy origin story here, and several vignettes, but the highlight is the longer tale of the mysteries of the wyrm, and festering, crawling things in an ancient manor house and its library. It fairly oozes supernatural evil and is one of my favorite things.

By Brian Lumley,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Compleat Crow as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Titus Crow is an occult investigator, psychic sleuth and cosmic voyager. In this book 11 short stories featuring Crow are brought together. These stories were written before the "Cthulhu Mythos" novels and follow Crow as he explores beyond the frontiers where mortal man is not meant to tread.


Book cover of Who Fears the Devil (Planet Stories 24)

William Meikle Author Of Carnacki: Heaven and Hell

From my list on occult detective collections.

Why am I passionate about this?

Even before I found Lovecraft and Stephen King and my world turned, I was raised on Doyle, Wells, Hodgson, and Robert Louis Stevenson which gave me both a love of the "gentleman detective" era and a deep love of the late Victorian/early Edwardian historical period in general. Once you merge that with my abiding interest in all things weird and spooky, you can see where a lot of my stories come from. There seems to be quite a burgeoning market for this kind of mixing of detection and supernatural, and I intend to write more... maybe even a lot more.

William's book list on occult detective collections

William Meikle Why did William love this book?

Silver John, a balladeer with a silver-stringed guitar, crisscrosses rural USA encountering all manner of supernatural entities, and does it with a song in his heart. There's a deep love of ancient folklore that shines through in this wonderful collection. It's far removed from Carnacki or Silence's cozy sitting rooms and libraries, but every bit as tied to a desire to get to the root of ancient mysteries. There's an almost Bradburyesque sense of wonder in these tales that lifts you up and carries you alongside John on his travels.

By Manly Wade Wellman, Mike Resnick, Karl Edward Wagner

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Who Fears the Devil (Planet Stories 24) as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

There's a traveling man the Carolina mountain folk call Silver John for the silver strings strung on his guitar. In his wanderings, John encounters a parade of benighted forest creatures, mountain spirits, and shapeless horrors from the void of history with only his enduring spirit, playful wit, and the magic of his guitar to preserve him. Manly Wade Wellman's Silver John is one of the most beloved figures in fantasy, a true American folk hero of the literary age. For the first time the "Planet Stories" edition of "Who Fears the Devil?" collects all of John's adventures published throughout Wellman's…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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