Many thanks to Gareth Walters over at The Amazing Movie Show Web site for his extremely thoughtful examination of The New Horror Handbook. His review is especially meaningful to me because 1) He is no stranger to writing extremely insightful reviews of genre releases, and 2) He looks at the Handbook as a whole rather than simply reviewing specific chapters which, admittedly, is a big temptation with a book of this nature.
He’s also the first person to mention the design of the book. I personally think that Pamela Norman has really made this book what it is, especially with the way she handled the marginalia that runs throughout the text.
This fact was really brought home to me early on in the process when I raided my own sizable stash of genre books, looking for a design to use as inspiration for The New Horror Handbook. I was immediately disappointed to discover that, though I have many favorite books, I’ve yet to see one on the subject of horror movies with any truly distinctive style. Some are printed on better paper than others, some feature many gorgeous color photos, but none really break out of the simple picture/text format that has ruled book printing since the early ’90s.
And speaking of design, be sure to check out The Amazing Movie Show site — really one of the best designed genre sites I’ve seen in a long, long time.