Vacationland, by John Hodgman (Viking/Penguin Random House, 2017)

Ruminations on, among other things, owning two holiday homes. Similar in its approach to that of its follow-up Medallion Status, Hodgman discusses the advantages and the minor pitfalls of almost being a celebrity, rural v city life, and the odd responsibilities of homeownership. Deft, pleasant, amusing, melancholic as ever.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England

The Silence of the Lambs [Devil’s Advocates], by Barry Forshaw (Auteur Publishing, 2013)

A smart, clear, and diligent monograph on the Jonathan Demme-directed adaptation of the Thomas Harris novel. Straightforward and effective, this short book covers the movie and its source material, as well as the wider impact of Lecter in print and film, as well as in genre. Recommended.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England

The Descent [Devil’s Advocates], by James Marriott (Auteur Publishing, 2013)

A monograph on the 2005 Neil Marshall-directed horror film. Leaning on Freud for much of its insight, this is an academic but nevertheless readable text on the movie, making clear its associations and being careful to site it in both the director’s wider work as well as in a cycle of mid-00s underground-fixated flicks.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England

The Blair Witch Project, by Russ Gomm (Arrow Books, 2018)

A folk history of the making of and the later life of horror movie The Blair Witch Project. Taking a fan perspective, but able also to offer contrary opinions, this monograph successfully presents an overview of the movie and indicates why – not least in production and in marketing terms – Blair Witch is still an influential film.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England

The Hitcher, by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas (Arrow Books, 2018)

A monograph on the 1986 road movie/horror hybrid, patterned after the approach of the BFI Classics series. While there’s some interesting material on pre-production and casting, this is not a good effort. Variable writing and editing, with assertions rather than arguments cluttering the thin text. Unfortunately, I was disappointed.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England

Medallion Status, by John Hodgman (Viking/Penguin Random House, 2019)

Reflections on perceived dwindling fame and airline loyalty schemes. We don’t really have humourists in the UK; maybe we should. Anyway, this is a funny, melancholy and perceptive look at Hollywood and other places thanks to Hodgman’s temporary access to the outer parts of the inner sanctum.

My own books are here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England

 

Middlefield, by Ian Waites (Uniform Books, 2017)

A personal geography of a Lincolnshire housing estate. Photographs and text blend to offer a discussion of the uses made and lived experiences of post-war estate dwelling. Experiential rather than nostalgic, the book celebrates modernist planning, the egalitarianism of what might be seen as bland conformity, and the ways in which use reinscribes space. Lots to think about.

My own books here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

Tips from a Publisher, by Scott Pack (Eye Books, 2020)

A guide to writing, editing, submitting and publishing – as the book’s subtitle says – from an industry perspective. A friendly, useful, realistic, up-to-date and detailed guide to what to expect from and with agents and publishers (as well as with non-traditional ways into publication), and how to approach them professionally. A great addition to any shelf of writery books. Recommended.

My own books here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.

A Natural History of Ghosts: 500 Years of Hunting for Proof, by Roger Clarke (Penguin Books, 2013)

A history of ghosts, hauntings, and on attempts to scientifically study the supernatural. Focusing on Britain, this fine book offers a primer on celebrated hauntings, on key figures such as Harry Price, and on the social and cultural studies aspects of ghostlore. Lots of fun.

My own books here, if that’s your thing. Newest is noir thriller East of England.