Review by: KEN KORCZAK
It’s a given that all books or stories of human-UFO encounter involve strangeness for the very fact that these are unusual events that outside what is generally accepted as normal.
But then there are stories about UFO encounter than involve something called “high strangeness” – situations that are so weird and mind-blowing that they strain our standards of rational thought or what we can easily believe.
The story of small-town Minnesota man Roger Kvande is solidly in the realm of the latter — high strangeness. Here’s a guy whose experiences goes well beyond a simple sighting of a flying saucer, an encounter with aliens or even the classic narrative of a ‘typical’ abduction scenario.
Mr. Kvande’s experience is a deeply involved, multi-dimensional series of events that is also multigenerational. Not only has Kvande experienced a life-time of interaction with alien beings, but the phenomenon also seems to have been visited upon his father and at least one grandparent.
An enormous amount of ground is covered in this rather small book, EXTRATERRESTRIAL ODYSSEY. It’s about 140 pages with large type in a tiny format, a 4 by 7-inch paperback. I purchased it through the Lulu.com print-on-demand publishing service. Even though it’s a manuscript that can be completed in a long afternoon read, the reader may come away contemplating the implications of the story for weeks or months to come.
The main event of the book is centered around an incident that is said to have occurred in the town of Bagley, a small community of about 1,300 people in the northwest corner of Minnesota. (It’s just over 100 miles from my own home town of Greenbush, Minnesota).
On April 22, 1966, legend has it that “a flying saucer” was observed by multiple residents as it flew down the main street of Bagley, narrowly missed colliding with a school bus and then landed on the outskirts of town. There witnesses reported seeing “four dwarf-like beings” emerge from the craft. They appeared to conduct a brief inspection of the vehicle before getting back in and taking off and vanishing into the sky.
It’s a sensational event in and off itself – but this is only a warm up as Mr. Kvande’s fantastic story rolls out – including the fact that he was actually on board that UFO at the time it buzzed the streets of his city!
How does that amazing circumstance come about? Well, I won’t say more because I don’t want to issue a series of spoiler alerts or give it all away for those who have yet to read this book. I will say, however, that the tale is somewhat convoluted and not entirely well handled by the primary authors of the book, William McNeff and Craig. R. Lang, both long-time investigators with the Minnesota chapter of MUFON.
To be fair, McNeff and Lang had a tough job. Kvande’s story is not a simple one. I give them great credit for writing what is ultimately a thoughtful and intelligent account which makes a heroic attempt to ground Kvande’s experience in some theoretical physics and solid scientific investigation.
Mr. Kvande not only interacts with aliens over his lifetime and takes a ride on a UFO. He also travels in time, has his consciousness displaced into the minds of other people in the past or alternate universes, and he even develops a relationship with a UFO craft that seems to have its own intelligence – as if the UFO was a living being with individual consciousness.
I told you there would be high strangeness!
UFO experiences aside, I should add that Roger “Rocky” Kvande has otherwise led an ordinary life — in fact, he has enjoyed a long career of considerable success in the computer, electronics, software development and programming fields. He’s been a much sought-after employee for a string big name clients who have benefited significantly from his talents with computers and electronics.
Despite its drawbacks, I consider this a gem of a book that is a must read for serious ufologists and for those looking for UFO stories that break the mold. It’s not a “more of the same” offering that those of us who read a lot of UFO literature. Mr. Kvande’s tale is weird, different, and iconoclastic. Despite being outlandish, his story has a disturbing ring of truth about it that will seriously challenge — and vex — even the most open-minded UFO enthusiast.
Ken Korczak is a former newspaper reporter, government information officer, served as an advocate for homeless people as a VISTA Volunteer, and taught journalism at the University of North Dakota for five years. He is the author of: BIRD BRAIN GENIUS
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