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Welcome to My New Blog

Posted on 23 September 2011, 22:13

I am delighted to announce that White Crow Books will be publishing my novel The Imprisoned Splendor in a November 2011.


It’s a story about a man forced to come to terms in the afterlife with the foolish and selfish mistakes he made on earth.  Kiran is a gifted but self-absorbed college professor who grew up in Bombay (or Mumbai) and came to America to make a name for himself and get rich. Working at a leading California university, he gains national prominence as a professional philosopher. He lives in a conflicted marriage with Lisa, a glamorous but superficial American, but this union comes to an abrupt end on a visit home when he dies in a plane crash. We live through his horror as he watches death and annihilation gallop toward him, and we feel his amazement when he discovers he’s still alive in a world he was certain could not exist.  Now he must face his karma, and that will be harrowing. He relives the events of his life not as he experienced them, but as his victims did—his students, his fellow workers, above all the women who loved him. Eventually he seeks out Shalini.  Many years ago she committed suicide after he rejected her in favor of her rival, Lisa. Shalini had been a gifted cellist, promising student of literature, and devotee of Sylvia Plath, whose suicide she copied. Working under the guidance of his saintly grandmother, the indomitable Plath, and several others (all now in spirit), Kiran, facing heavy odds, attempts to rescue Shalini from the murky Shadowlands in a dramatic climax to the story.  Descriptions of the afterworld based on spirit communications provide the setting.

THE IMPRISONED SPLENDOR is much more than a paranormal romance novel.  It’s also a “message book”—like Richard Matheson’s afterlife novel What Dreams May Come, still widely read after thirty years.  I hope readers will be intrigued by the spirit-charged world they find here—with its unfamiliar laws and culture, its vivid landscapes and astral cities, and its lessons for common earth dwellers like us as we look toward our own future beyond death.  This is not a religious book—no Jesus or Krishna found here.  But it does have a strong spiritual dimension.  It talks with compassion to wounded, struggling human beings, and it suggests that the Universe, moral to the core, holds us accountable for our actions in a world that many of us, like Kiran, don’t even suspect exists.

This will be my third novel, following The Rich Man (St. Martin’s) and Thomas (Penguin India).  I teach world religions and death studies at a California university.

The Imprisoned Splendor

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About Stafford Betty

Posted on 03 September 2011, 15:03

Stafford Betty earned his PhD in theology from Fordham University, where he specialized in Asian religious thought and Sanskrit. Today he is a professor of world religions at California State University, Bakersfield, and has become an acclaimed expert on the afterlife.

In 2011, he published The Afterlife Unveiled, the first of his afterlife books, and The Imprisoned Splendor, a novel set in the afterlife. More recently he published Heaven and Hell Unveiled: Updates from the World of Spirit, and When Did You Ever Become Less by Dying? Afterlife: The Evidence.

Three more books are pending and under contract, including Ghost Boy, a novel for middle-graders about a clairvoyant boy, and a futuristic novel, The War for Islam. He regards his novel, The Severed Breast, published by White Crow, as his best work. It tells the story of the apostle Thomas’ travels through India to win Hindus and Buddhists to Christianity.

Stafford’s many scholarly articles and essays can be found at He writes and speaks with clarity and regularly addresses conference and radio audiences.

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Posted on 02 September 2011, 17:00

Test blog post for Stafford Betty

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Spirits and Crime by Carl Wickland – Habits, desires and inclinations are rooted in the mind and remain with the individual after he is freed from his physical body, until they are eliminated by the will. The spirits of many criminals, murderers, those who were executed or are seeking for revenge, remain indefinitely in the earth sphere and often endeavor to continue their former activities and to carry out their evil designs through controlling the bodies of mortals who are sensitive to their influence. Read here
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