Weird Massachusetts by Jeff Belanger (Book Review)
Plot: If it’s unusual or unexplainable or fantastic, and in the Bay State, you’ll find it all here in Weird Massachusetts. See how the world’s biggest elephant now fits into a peanut butter jar and why it brings good luck to students, listen for those unexplained booms in Nashoba, discover the hidden secrets at Wizard’s Glen and Altar Rock, escape from the Sea Witch and the Cape Cod Mermaid, check out the Museum of Burnt Food, or eat an apple from one of Isaac Newton’s famous apple trees—but whatever you do, don’t pick up a red-headed hitchhiker on Route 44. It’s all here. It’s all weird and it’s all in Massachusetts.
My Review: I came across this book awhile back and totally forgot to request it from my local library, I‘m from Massachusetts so I thought it would be interesting. Then my husband was on vacation this past week so I borrowed it from the library in hopes of finding places to travel to as the full title states it is a “travel guide”. I was upset to learn that most of the places, while public places to travel, don’t really tell you how to get there. Therefore I needed the internet to search for the places mentioned. There also was no index in the back of the book where you could search by town or county, which would have been great and much easier for me to figure out how close some of these places were to where I lived. Maybe in future books like this they’ll add that.
As for the stories themselves. Some were interesting and I had never heard of, but overall most of them were not really “weird” stories. I think I heard someone mention once that the “Weird New Jersey” book was filled with ghost stories and local urban legends, so I was expecting the same from this book. What I got instead were some quite boring facts about some towns I had never even heard of. To be quite honest, I skipped a lot of stories because they didn’t hold my attention. As I said there were a couple stories that were interesting, but most of those I had already heard of. And sadly many weren’t anywhere close to where I lived.
Overall: The book isn’t the type that’s supposed to give you all the facts on each subject, its really just meant to peak your interest in some of them and let you research further on your own. For that fact alone, I’m giving it a better rating then I think I normally would. It was interesting, but has no re-read value for ME, but I know I‘ll one day borrow “Weird New England“. I’m sure someone out there closer to some of these locations would enjoy this book more then I did.