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Paperbacks from Hell: The Twisted History of…

Paperbacks from Hell: The Twisted History of '70s and '80s… (2017)

by Grady Hendrix

Other authors: Will Errickson (Afterword)

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2361672,346 (4.34)34



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Showing 1-5 of 16 (next | show all)
An affectionate tribute to the horror trend in paperbacks during the genre boom of the 70s and 80s, with capsule descriptions of dozens of novels in the narrative and numerous cover reproductions. I enjoy monster stories and some of these led me to bookmark them on Amazon. Hardly heavy reading, but a fun book. ( )
  NickHowes | Jan 6, 2019 |
A fun trip through the horror paperbacks of the 70s and 80s. It's filled with paperback covers in full color, which is awesome, and full page artist spotlights.

Though, it's not perfect. For instance, I wholeheartedly disagree with the statement on page 106, "Marasco and his now-forgotten best seller focused on the real issue for most people with a haunted house..." I find it hard to believe anyone who calls themselves a "70s horror fan" hasn't read this haunted-house classic; or, read it and has since forgotten it.

Or, the author's shameful omission of Point Horror in "Won't Somebody Think of the Children," page 214. Especially when the cover of The Lifeguard is included in the bottom corner of the page. I would've loved to know more about its origins and eventual demise.

But, those nitpicks aside, this is the perfect gift for anyone who digs through paperbacks at their favorite thrift store or secondhand book store in hopes of finding something, ANYTHING, by Ruby Jean Jensen or Miriam Lynch or Victoria Holt (or one of the bazillion books written by men, who typically hog all the 70s 80s limelight, but you still need to own an as-close-to-first-edition copy anyway).

3.5 stars ( )
  flying_monkeys | Dec 30, 2018 |
Enjoyable and interesting--more of a list of examples than, say, a thorough academic history--but certainly more than a collection of images with light captions, as is sometimes the case with more disappointing books.

(Note: 5 stars = amazing, wonderful, 4 = very good book, 3 = decent read, 2 = disappointing, 1 = awful, just awful. I'm fairly good at picking for myself so end up with a lot of 4s). ( )
  ashleytylerjohn | Sep 19, 2018 |
I had been waiting for this book to come out and I was not disappointed. I have to say I loved it. I have been collecting horror paperbacks for a long time. This book had me going back to my collection and just reliving all the joy of collecting and reading them. The whole book was a fun read and the cultural history was interesting. The illustrations were also wonderful. I would recommend it to anyone interested in the history of horror fiction. ( )
  texvelis | May 2, 2018 |
An affectionate, nostalgic, and unflinchingly funny celebration of the horror fiction boom of the 1970s and '80s

Take a tour through the horror paperback novels of two iconic decades . . . 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. Complete with story summaries and artist and author profiles, this unforgettable volume dishes on familiar authors like V. C. Andrews and R. L. Stine, plus many more who've faded into obscurity. Also included are recommendations for which of these forgotten treasures are well worth your reading time and which should stay buried.

I like to read a good horror or ghost story around Halloween so I found this book an interesting look back at horror books from the 70's and 80's. It gave a brief description of the book, facts about the horror industry, publishers, beautiful cover art, and type of horror for each book. It was a definite blast into the past and a must read for those who love horror books. ( )
1 vote EadieB | May 2, 2018 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Hendrix, GradyAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Errickson, WillAfterwordsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Of course, every mother thinks her baby is perfect, but at some point, as her home fills with dead bodies, she has to face facts and admit that the fruit of her womb is a face-eating beast spawned from the deepest recesses of hell. If Whitney Houston is right, and the children are indeed our future, then we need to approach our future with maximum caution.
Today, we think of ourselves as responsible stewards of this big blue ball called Earth, but literary evidence suggests we’re just suckers. Given the chance, nature will turn on us in a heartbeat. This is one issue on which carnivores and vegetarians must stand united: we must eat nature, or nature will eat us.
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A nostalgic and unflinchingly funny celebration of the horror fiction boom of the 1970's and 1980's, complete with story summaries and artist and author profiles.

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