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Book Reviews for The Art of Mediumship by Medium Elaine Kuzmeskus, Saints & Sinners; Mexican Devotional Art, and Pickled Punks & Girlie Shows; A Life Spent on the Midways of America by Rick West

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      Elaine Kuzmeskus certified  as a medium by the National Association of Spiritualist Churches since 1972, complied this volume about clairvoyance, channeling and various aspects of spirituality. Elaine has directed many well known seances such as the Houdini Séance at the Goodspeed Opera House.  Table tipping, electronic voice phenomena, trance, and trumpet séances are discussed in this collection. Elaine describes her own personal journey in becoming a medium and her realization that she was clairvoyant. This is an excellent how to book for those harnessing their psychic and spiritual energy. Diagrams of chakras, detailed information about the colors in auras, exercises in opening up your third eye, and suggestions for attaining a spiritual guide all are excellent in aiding anyone exploring their spirituality.  It also aids in informing anyone with an acute interest in mediumship and clairvoyance. I enjoyed The Art of Mediumship by Medium Elaine Kuzmeskus. I found the book to be insightful, unique and easy to read.

 Saints & Sinners; Mexican Devotional Art documents many styles of Mexican devotional art including  masks, devils and angels, and ex-votos. Most were religious items used in ceremonies both at home and church. Religion definitely plays a significant role in the creation of this genre of art. Various mediums are used such as wood carvings, clay, stone, metal, and paper mache'.  Gloria Fraser Giffords and Tom Pirazzini edited this wonderful and extensive collection. Additional essays by Philip Wrench, Roberto G. Cruz Floriano, Janet Brady Esser, Martha J. Egan and Joanna Stuhr enrich this volume further. Expect to learn about the extensive history, unique symbolism, construction and uses of Mexican devotional art. The photographs of the artwork in this volume are extensive and  high quality. The essays aid in comprehending this rich and vibrant culture.

    In Pickled Punks & Girlie Shows; A Life Spent on the Midways of America  Rick West, a sideshow veteran, takes his readers behind-the-scenes of day to day life as a carnival performer. It sure doesn't seem like everyday life! Bizarre stories color this unique memoir. Expect to be delighted with imagery and antidotes about Guinness Book of World Records level of artistry and creatures, tattooed punks, glamorous showgirls and many more surprises. Expect to see four legged girls, siamese twins, huge reptiles,  frozen creatures, a  monster 1100 pound pig, acrobats, and charming spider monkeys. Due to West's personal role in this account this collection is a vivid and unbelievably unique and funny collection of sideshow and carnival life.  Pickled Punks & Girlie Shows; A Life Spent on the Midways of America is an enthralling adventure not to be missed!

I will be reviewing books by Schiffer Publishing every month. For more information please visit