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Paperbacks from Hell: The Twisted History of '70s and '80s Horror Fiction
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Published:
Quirk Books 2017
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Description
From the New York Times best-selling author of The Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying Vampires comes 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.
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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
09/19/2017
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781594749827
ASIN:
B01NBO5GIH
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Grady Hendrix. (2017). Paperbacks from Hell: The Twisted History of '70s and '80s Horror Fiction. Quirk Books.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Grady Hendrix. 2017. Paperbacks From Hell: The Twisted History of '70s and '80s Horror Fiction. Quirk Books.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Grady Hendrix, Paperbacks From Hell: The Twisted History of '70s and '80s Horror Fiction. Quirk Books, 2017.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Grady Hendrix. Paperbacks From Hell: The Twisted History of '70s and '80s Horror Fiction. Quirk Books, 2017. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Date Added:
Jun 12, 2018 17:06:31
Date Updated:
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      • role: Author
      • fileAs: Hendrix, Grady
      • bioText: Grady Hendrix is a novelist and screenwriter based in New York City. He is the author of Horrorstör, My Best Friend's Exorcism, Paperbacks from Hell, and We Sold Our Souls, all of which received critical praise from outlets including NPR, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, the A.V. Club, Paste, Buzzfeed, and more. He has contributed to Playboy, The Village Voice, and Variety.
      • name: Grady Hendrix
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title
Paperbacks from Hell
fullDescription
From the New York Times best-selling author of The Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying Vampires comes 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.
reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: The New York Times Book Review
      • content: "Pure, demented delight."
      • premium: False
      • source: Atlas Obscura
      • content: "A loving examination of lurid pulp book covers from the 1970s and '80s."
      • premium: False
      • source: BookRiot
      • content: "[Hendrix's] love of the genre shines through as he pokes gentle fun at some of the era's more entertaining reads, and speaks with genuine appreciation of other titles whose horrors stand the test of time."
      • premium: False
      • source: Blu Gilliand, Cemetery Dance
      • content: More praise for Grady Hendrix:
        "National treasure Grady Hendrix follows his classic account of a haunted IKEA-like furniture showroom, Horrorstor (2014), with a nostalgia-soaked ghost story, My Best Friend's Exorcism."
      • premium: False
      • source: The Washington Post, on Horrorstör
      • content: "Horrorstör delivers a crisp terror-tale...[and] Hendrix strikes a nice balance between comedy and horror."
      • premium: False
      • source: The A.V. Club, on My Best Friend's Exorcism
      • content: "Terrific... Sharply written... [My Best Friend's Exorcism] makes a convincing case for [Hendrix's] powers as a sharp observer of human behavior."
      • premium: False
      • source: Booklist, starred review, on We Sold Our Souls
      • content: "Hendrix's darkest novel yet will leave readers begging for an encore."
      • premium: False
      • source: Minnesota Public Radio, on My Best Friend's Exorcism
      • content: "Campy. Heartfelt. Horrifying."
      • premium: False
      • source: Bustle, on Horrorstör
      • content: "An inventive, hilarious haunted house tale."
      • premium: False
      • source: Fangoria, on My Best Friend's Exorcism
      • content: "Clever, heartfelt, and get-under-your-skin unnerving."
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        July 31, 2017
        Hendrix, whose novel Horrorstör brought the macabre to big-box Scandinavian furniture stores, returns with this playful history of what he calls the golden era in horror fiction. The book covers the period roughly between the publication of Rosemary’s Baby in 1967 and the release of the film version of The Silence of the Lambs in 1991, the success of which Hendrix says convinced publishers to abandon the label “horror” in favor of “thriller.” With an authoritative but jocular tone, Hendrix examines notable authors, cover artists, and themes. The fun of the book comes from the ample, and invariably lurid, cover-art reproductions included, and the truly ridiculous variety of story lines discussed (in addition to vampires and werewolves, killer rabbits, moths, and embryos make cameo appearances.) Hendrix tracks shifting trends in subject matter, from the Satanic and occult fiction of the late 1960s and early ’70s to the haunted houses of the mid-’70s to the serial slashers of the ’80s. A solid portion of the text is devoted to plot synopses, but these—beginning with one featuring “Nazi leprechauns who enjoy S&M”—are never boring. Like some malevolent force in one of his beloved novels, Hendrix’s geeky enthusiasm is infectious. Unwary readers might find themselves drawn to musty stacks of old paperbacks. Beware.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        September 1, 2017

        This hilarious history from Hendrix (Horrorstor; My Best Friend's Exorcism) is a comprehensive survey of the dime-store horror paperbacks from the 1970s and 1980s--an often overlooked but integral piece of horror literature as a whole. After a brief prolog outlining the genre's history--starting with gothic romances and the influence of Fifties and Sixties pulp fiction--Hendrix delves into different subgenres of horror and the (often chuckle-worthy) jacket covers that came along with them. He devotes chapters to possession novels (influenced and seemingly borderline plagiarized from William Peter Blatty's The Exorcist), books about the spawn of Satan, monsters, and creepy children--all staples of modern-day horror. While his prose is often tongue-in-cheek, Hendrix provides readers with the building blocks of what we have come to expect from horror literature. Also of note are the brief histories of the cover illustrators of these pulpy paperbacks, shedding light on the creators of the art that initially attracted most readers to these books. VERDICT Fans of horror fiction will love this funny and insightful history. Not only is the text informative, but readers will find themselves building booklists from it, too.--Tyler Hixson, Brooklyn P.L.

        Copyright 2017 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        August 1, 2017
        For anyone who grew up ogling the skull-festooned paperbacks of local dime-store racks, or daring oneself to flip over one of those ghoulish V. C. Andrews die-cut covers, get ready to have a traumatic flashback. Hendrix (My Best Friend's Exorcism, 2016) grave-digs through two decades of pulpy, sordid, gory, incest-filled, and often totally wackadoodle horror novels, sorting them by theme ( Creepy Kids, Real Estate Nightmares, Weird Science ) and bowing at the genesis texts (Rosemary's Baby, Burnt Offerings, Coma) before providing the author backstories and plot synopses of the resulting legions of quickie shockers. Hendrix efficiently provides cultural context, noting, for instance, how late-1960s environmental disasters set the table for a slew of killer rats, crabs, scorpions, frogs, moths, slugs, maggots, ants, and even plants (see the side section entitled, Salads of the Damned ). Half the page space is deservedly given to the demented cover art and accompanying breathless taglines ( The shuddering touch of skin-crawling terror! ). Your library probably doesn't have most of these obscurities, but your patrons probably include plenty of delightful weirdos who will remember them.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2017, American Library Association.)

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shortDescription
From the New York Times best-selling author of The Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying Vampires comes 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...
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awards
      • source: Horror Writers Association
      • value: Bram Stoker Award
subtitle
The Twisted History of '70s and '80s Horror Fiction
publisher
Quirk Books