[Paperbacks From Hell images courtesy]

Paperbacks From Hell
Grady Hendrix
Quirk Books, 256 pages

Set the wayback machine to the glory days of a more innocent time … 1980’s America. If your parents wouldn’t let you rent that copy of Faces of Death from the corner 4-Star Video or the local 5-screen multiplex had no horror movies showing, there was still a way for a young horror fan to get their fix.

The branch library or the grocery store had, if not the perfect replacement for the latest Friday the 13th movie, an acceptable substitute to tide you over until you could get over to your friends house to watch a VHS copy of Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

Were these covers lurid? Check. Over the top? You Bet! On Teenage Me’s bookshelf? OF COURSE!

I speak of the humble mass market paperback. From Ace and AvonĀ  all the way to Zebra, American publishers flooded the land with lurid front covers and purple prose filled backs designed to separate you (or your parents) from your (or their) money.

Now this cheezy, pulpy, deliriously over the top era of horror history is chroncled in Paperbacks From Hell: The Twisted History of 70’s & 80’s Horror Fiction. Grady Hendrix, author of Horrorstor and My Best Friend’s Exorcism and Will Errickson, host of the Too Much Horror Fiction blog present the hightlights, lowlights and unforgettable images of this “golden age” of publishing.

Author Grady Hendrix. Image courtesy @grady_hendrix Twitter.

Hendrix was nice enough to connect through the magic of the interwebs to take a deep dive into a fascinating era for book lovers and horror fans. Besides a shout-out to the editors and artists who brought these covers to life, we remember our favorite cover cliches, what drew Hendrix to write a book about books, and some of the most spectacular covers featured in Paperbacks From Hell.

Listen in, and hope you enjoy!

[audioplayer file=”″ titles=”LIVE FROM THE BUNKER: Interview with Grady Hendrix and Some PAPERBACKS FROM HELL” artists=”SciFi4Me Radio” track=”350805″ text=”ec9a13″]


For even more horror nostalga goodness, check out the following –

Will Errickson’s blog Too Much Horror Fiction

Grady for information on his current novels and links to reviews of many of the books featured in Paperbacks From Hell

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