I'm looking for a Readers Digest paper back, White cover with a picture of a lighthouse(I think?) it was 30-40 short stories, with no well known
Possible Titles-Strange but true tales? Secrets and short stories? Unknown Mysteries? Tales of the unknown? Tales of Suspense? Another story had a girl kept drawing a picture of a guy she never met, turned out it was the guy that donated his eyes to her when he died, another story was about a guy that was visited by Marilyn Monroe's spirit. Even though he had never met her. I've been looking for this book for years, and just need the title and the date published, and could probably get it on amazon, wish they had a site that just showed the covers, and I would recognize it and be able to finally get back something from my childhood. Thanks for any help you can give me. Best wishes.. Billy.
Thanks for your question! Spent about an hour digging without too much success. There are definitely a lot of Reader's Digest collections out there, with all the titles you mentioned and plenty of variations, and since they've been printed and reprinted the cover art is tricky to track, when it's available at all.
Although I wasn't able to pull an exact pub date and title for you, I might have a tool that'll prove useful if your search continues. I don't use LibraryThing particularly often, but they've got the most convenient list that I could find of titles from the Reader's Digest group. Like all community-edited sites it's not necessarily complete, but if you Ctrl-F for 'unknown', 'suspense', etc. you can see if any of the copies ring bells and usually find some publication info.
You mentioned that the individual stories weren't by well-known authors, but do you happen to remember if they were 'set up' like individual short stories, with story having a title and at least some identified author? Or were they more anonymous and just kind of run together with each new section? The cabin story sounds kind of like an old Jack London number, then if we can nail down a couple others it narrows the field a bit. But a lot of times that's not the way Reader's Digest does it... I read the covers off an old copy of Mysteries of the Unexplained back before I knew what a citation was.
One other thing, just in case - some of the stories definitely wouldn't fit, with Marilyn Monroe or the eye transplant, but there's a collection of New England folklore, ghost stories, and history written by a man named Samuel Adams Drake. It was first published in 1901, but once it hit the public domain it's been reprinted about a dozen times - and it looks like more than a few of them had a lighthouse prominently on the cover. This edition seems to be the most recent, or at least most available, or maybe just has the best description on Amazon. So maybe stories from the original collection got merged with others for printing in a Beyond Belief or Reader's Digest compilation?
Anyway, happy hunting, best of luck, and thanks for the chance to do some browsing around short story collections! Feel free to email back if other details occur to you.