"Piercing the Veils of Death (A Paranormal Exploration)" is Dane Ladwig’s self-published book, which he describes as “an adventure through the hereafter of paranormal, supernatural and superstitious beliefs, where faith intercedes and life questions reason.”
The book sold more than 500 copies the first weekend, and a barrage of questions and comments from curious readers anxious to share their own experiences, or delve further into the world of supernatural phenomena, overflow from Ladwig's in-box.
The book opens with the tale of a young man attending his own funeral, and then turns nonfiction, as the author probes his own supernatural experiences and also explores a variety of related topics such as apparitions, the spirituality of the American Indian, even the death of pets. The book ends with interviews of professional paranormal investigators explaining what happens when they are called out on an alleged haunting or sighting.
Ladwig is a Bartlett resident, a graduate of Elmhurst College and Moody Bible Institute, and an ordained chaplain, with degrees in English, philosophy and theology. Prior to the release of his book, he hosted an online radio show, "A View From My Loft," in which he interviewed authors including best-selling crime writer RJ Parker, now one of Ladwig’s closest friends and mentors.
“We just clicked,” Ladwig says. “He is a seasoned writer, a cornucopia of knowledge, and he taught me a lot about self-publishing and also marketing. I am grateful for his wisdom and friendship.”
In addition to the goal of completing one book a year to satisfy his passion for writing, Ladwig holds another objective close to his heart, stemming from a harsh childhood in which he was forced to fend for himself on the streets of Chicago.
"I’d like to visit schools and serve as living proof that no matter how tough the journey may get, kids can control their destinies, make their own choices, and even make a difference in the world," he says. "And I'd like to urge them to never give up on their dreams, but to dream big; the universe is the limit. I would also like to convey the message that they should never allow themselves to conform to the low expectations of doubters and naysayers who may predict for them a future of inevitable failure."
A portion of proceeds from the book will be donated to fighting Noonan syndrome, a congenital disorder. And Ladwig offers free copies to veterans, service members and civil servants, noting, "These people put their lives on the line every day for my freedom to be able to write, and this is one small way to show my gratitude and thanks."
His second book, "Dr. H.H. Holmes and the Whitechapel Ripper," scheduled for release this fall, follows three years of research and the procurement of what he refers to as "history-changing evidence" involving the Jack the Ripper murders. He says he is confident that after 125 years, the true story finally will be told.
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