Books are available at programs or for purchase directly from William.

Familiar SpiritsFamiliarSpiritsWilliamPack

Do you believe in ghosts? The anthology of ghost stories just might have you believing. A companion to William’s popular ghost show, Familiar Spirits is a collection of modern supernatural fiction guaranteed to have you sleeping with the lights on. Over a dozen spine-tingling authors including William Pack, Jean Rabe, Sarah Hans, and Donald J. Bingle.  

Available October 1, 2015- 5 1/2″ X 8 1/2″ – $25 post paid

The Essential Edgar Allan Poe

WilliamPackPoebookcoverBorn poor, orphaned at the age of two, rejected by his foster father, tormented by the death of the women he loved, a brilliant and temperamental writer, Edgar Allan Poe was one of the saddest and strangest figures in American Literature. William surprises readers with the tragic and twisted story of an original American genius. Includes biography and reprints of select poetry and stories by Mr. Poe.

Published 2014 – Perfect bound 116 pages – 5 1/2″ X 8 1/2″ – $20 post paid domestic



 The Essential Great Chicago FireFireCoverJpeg

The true facts and stories of the fire that transformed Chicago through the words and experiences of those that survived the night of horror.  William Pack expands on his popular library program and adds supplemental material with songs and poems of the fire, period interviews with Fire Marshall Williams, Reporter Joseph Chamberlin, and city founder Isaac Arnold. 

Published 2014 -Perfect bound- 126 pages – 5 1/2″ X 8 1/2″ – $20 post paid domestic


The Essential P.T. Barnum


The larger-than-life biography of showman P. T. Barnum. Known for his advertising genius, entertaining hoaxes, and inventing  the three-ring circus, here’ s the essential and captivating look at the man behind the Greatest Show on Earth.

Visit Barnum’s American Museum; meet General Tom Thumb; experience the thrill Barnum must have felt when, at age 60, he joined the circus; and discover Barnum’s legacy to the 19th century and beyond.

 Published 2012– Perfect Bound – 140 pages– 5 ½” X 8 ½” – $20 post paid domestic


The Essential Houdini

HoudiniCover1Handcuff King. Escape Artist. International Superstar. Since his death over eighty years ago, Harry Houdini’s life has been chronicled in books, in film, and on television, many still repeat the old Houdini myths.  Now, William Pack finds the man behind the myth. Drawing from dozens of published sources, he simplifies Houdini’s life to the essential things you need to know about this American icon.

The Essential Houdini traces the master magician’s life from desperate poverty to worldwide fame.

Published 2010– Perfect Bound – 130 pages – 5 ½” X 8 ½” – $20 post paid domestic



The Untold Story of Harry Kellar and The Tribune Spook Case


The story begins by setting the scene for the early days of spiritualism in Chicago, providing accounts of spirit mediums including Carrie Sawyer and the Bangs sisters, who were Chicago’s most visible mediums of the time, having begun as children.

All of this background prepares you for the dramatic scene (as the Tribune reports) which occurred in February of 1890, when a séance conducted by Carrie Sawyer was exposed by reporters, detectives, and skeptics.

These events led to a criminal prosecution, and no less than Harry Kellar, America’s premiere magician, was called to testify before the grand jury. This led to criminal indictments. (Facsimiles of which are included.)

Signed and Numbered, 75 copies

“Once again we must offer thanks to intrepid reporters and researchers like William Pack who rescue our own history from the dustbin of the past.” –Jamy Ian Swiss, Genii Magazine book review

Limited copies available – Wire Bound – 8 ½” x 8 ½” – 103 pages – $35 postpaid domestic


Discovering the Magic City:

Early Chicago Amusements, 1834 – 1871

DiscoveringDuring the better part of 2004 and 2005, William combed the microfilm collection of the Chicago Tribune (1864-1900) at his local Naperville Public Library, nearly a quarter of a million pages, collecting everything to do with magic and its allied arts. This book is the first in a planned series to tell the story of magic and magicians in Chicago.

The book discusses dime museums, acts like the Hanlon Brothers, Heller, Chang and Eng, the Herrmanns, the “Sphinx” illusion, General Tom Thumb, Hartz, the Davenport Brothers, and other features and famous variety performers. Others less well known-some otherwise all but lost to history-are revived through the pages.

Signed and Numbered, 100 copies

“Mr. Pack’s research is excellent and he has a knack for providing efficient thumbnail sketches of some of his subjects to provide context without getting carried away into digression. The book is a delightful peek through a tiny and very old window; William Pack has greatly improved the view through it.” –Jamy Ian Swiss, Genii Magazine book review

Out of print – Wire Bound – 8 ½” x 8 ½” – 101 pages