Title: Paperbacks From Hell
Author: Grady Hendrix
Genre: Horror, History, Art,
Imprint: Jimmy Patterson
Publisher: Hachette Book Group
Date published: September 19, 2017
Page Count: 256
A physical copy of this book was kindly provided by the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis: Take a tour through the horror paperback novels of the 1970s and ’80s . . . if you dare. Page through dozens and dozens of amazing book covers featuring well-dressed skeletons, evil dolls, and knife-wielding killer crabs! Read shocking plot summaries that invoke devil worship, satanic children, and haunted real estate! Horror author and vintage paperback book collector Grady Hendrix offers killer commentary and witty insight on these trashy thrillers that tried so hard to be the next Exorcist or Rosemary’s Baby. It’s an affectionate, nostalgic, and unflinchingly funny celebration of the horror fiction boom of two iconic decades, complete with story summaries and artist and author profiles. You’ll find familiar authors, like V. C. Andrews and R. L. Stine, and many more who’ve faded into obscurity. Plus recommendations for which of these forgotten treasures are well worth your reading time and which should stay buried.
– MY REVIEW –
The first (and only other) Grady Hendrix book that I’ve read (so far), is My Best Friend’s Exorcism! I loved that book (as you can see in my gush review here) and my friends actually got mad at me because I was stuck with my nose in that book while we were at a cottage this past summer, in stead of playing drinking games with them…woops! But anyway, since that book as fiction, and this book was nonfiction, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect, …but do know that I was hoping it would contain some of Hendrix’s humour!
…and my wish was fulfilled! If you want to explore and sample some of the horror books published in the 70’s and 80’s while reading some of the funniest (and sometimes sarcastic) commentary about said books, definitely check out Paperbacks From Hell: The Twisted History of ’70s and ’80s Horror Fiction by Grady Hendrix! He covers horror books from those two decades ranging from books featuring monstrous animals and insects (which was the section that made my skin crawl the most, due to my insect phobia), to Gothic Romance (featuring authors such as V.C. Andrews and Anne Rice), to slasher books (one of my favourite genres for film, but something which I have no explored much in the book medium), to a sub-genre titled “splatter punk” (in which he discussed the author of my favourite paranormal and horror novel, Poppy Z. Brite)!
I know a lot more about horror book categorization and sub-genres now, and I definitely know some of the words that I should be using when looking for a particular type of horror book! Particularly Gothic Romance and Splatter Punk I’m most excited about learning more about, and I will definitely keep a more active eye out for books already published, and being published under those sub-genres.
I read this book in bits and pieces over the course of 2 months or so, but it’s definitely a book that one can also read in one sitting. The commentary is amusing, as well as informative. I recommend this book to horror fans, as well as those who are curious about, and want to learn more about where horror came from in relation to where it is today!
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THANK YOU FOR READING MY REVIEW! HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? WHAT DID YOU THINK? AND IF YOU HAVEN’T READ IT YET, DO YOU WANT TO, OR NOT? HOW COME? LET ME KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS IN THE COMMENTS BELOW!