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A Field Guide to Monsters: This Book Could Save Your Life Paperback – October 25, 2004

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Hylas Publishing (October 25, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1592580882
  • ISBN-13: 978-1592580880
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 0.5 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,185,471 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"an intelligent and humorous read . . . the book to read under the covers late at night with a flashlight." -- Ken Beck in The Tennessean, Gannett News Service, October 28, 2005:

About the Author

Dave Elliot has worked in every aspect of comic and magazine publishing and was formerly the humor editor of Penthouse magazine. He operates a small boutique publishing company, Atomeka Press, with his partners Garry Leach and Ross Richie.

Film columnnist and writer C.J. Henderson lives in Brooklyn, NY, with his wife, fashion designer Grace Tin Lo, and their daughter, Erica. His awards include Best Short Fiction of 1997 from the Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts and Design.

Film reviewer and screenwriter R. Allen Leider lives in Manhattan with his wife Barbara, a professional photographer. He wrote the original story and screenplay for The Oracle (1985), hosted his own radio show Cinemascene on WWFM, for five years and has been an editor for The Monster Times, Show, Celebrity, Elite and other magazines, since 1970.

Customer Reviews

If those two were left out it would be five stars all the way.
A. Pierre
Showing a clear bias and a total lack of accuracy, this book is perfect for the Liberals it was so obviously written for.
L. DiSalvo
This is a really great little guide book, to all you favorite movie monsters.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By R. Howell on April 2, 2009
Format: Paperback
In this heavily humor based book, the writer(s) look for inspiration at the character Professor Abraham van Helsing and treats him as if he were a real person. Van Helsing's text on vampires and blood diseases would be the basis for this much expanded text on the variety of monsters found in our world based upon popular and pulp movies and tv shows. The book is broken up into categories with a wide variety of creatures and people within.

1. Mutated Lizards, Fish, and Dinosaurs
2. Mutate Men, Women, Animals, and Insects
3. Mutated Vegetables
4. Monster Men
5. Manufactured Monsters
6. Supernatural Monsters
7. Monsters From Beyond

These include everything from gremlins to Godzilla, Creature from the Black Lagoon to King Kong, The Fly to Jason Voorhees, Bigfoot to Swamp Thing, Replicants & Robocop to HAL 9000 & Terminator, Stay Puft Marshmallow Man to Edward Scissorhands, Pod people to attacking 50' Women (and men) and much much more.

Each entry gets an intelligence rating, description, behavior, lethality, weakness, and special powers. There are some great pictures contained within taken from the appropriate movies and shows but the book rather needed an eigth category in Alien Monsters and maybe less cpverage on the wide variety of vampire characters. All entries are done as if the creatures were real and dips heavily into humor and sarcasm. There are minute errors and some of the data but otherwise this is a great book that you can find in the Remainder Bins of your local bookstore for about $4-6. Worth the price for the pictures and a few chuckles. Read leisurely or finish it in a day, it was worth it.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By L. Blenkarn on November 26, 2006
Format: Paperback
Although a monster field guide is a cute idea for a fun stocking stuffer or coffee-table book, this book makes it painfully obvious that the writer fell short in their research. I'm sure there are more inaccuracies but, just by flipping through the book I noticed a few major ones just involving the Buffy universe.

1. The entry labeled The Master, actually, uses a picture of The Gentlemen from the Buffy episode "Hush".

2. The entry for Spike from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" states that Spike has been turned into a human so he is no longer a vampire, which is not true. The author must have mistaked Spike getting his soul back with becoming human.(Very very different!)

3. The entry for Angel from "Buffy and "Angel" states that Angel can "morph" and fly. Angel can do neither and neither do any vampires in the Buffy universe except Dracula.

It is pretty clear that the author has never watched more than one episode of Angel or Buffy or even attempted to research the characters. I know this is just a novelty book but that does not mean research is not necessary and it is amazing to me that this book would get published with so many major factual mistakes.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Karen Cox on March 22, 2009
Format: Paperback
I am currently reading this book and while it's interesting to look back at same famous movie monsters, I am also, as some other reviewers have noted, a little put off by the amount of errors in both typing and information. Some of the information provided isn't even that interesting, however, I thought the pictures that were included were well-chosen. Going back to the errors, two that stood out to me personally were in the page on the Flying Monkeys from The Wizard of Oz, the author refers to the Wicked Witch of the East as the one who sends the flying monkeys to attack Dorothy. Obviously, that is incorrect information. He also mentions Jurassic Park coming out in 1997, which in actuality is around the time the sequel The Lost World: Jurassic Park was released. The first one was released in 1993. Other errors of this nature popped up throughout the book and yet I did still enjoy most of what I was reading. I purchased this book for about $5.00 at Borders, which was just the right price. It really isn't worth the $19.95 price that is on the back cover of the book.
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Format: Paperback
This is a nice book, a visual feast of most of the major horror movies and TV shows from modern and classic eras appearing in colour (and black and white where the film was). As a tongue in cheek survival guide it is not in the league humour or quality wise of better books such as How to Survive a Horror Movie: All the Skills to Dodge the Kills or The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead. As an informative reference guide is probably where if that's the reason you're buying you may be disappointed. One there isn't a great deal of info on each character and two, as pointed out by other reviewers, they get it wrong a fare bit. However a great factor is there is a huge range (not comprehensive by any means but most of your favourites are probably here) of creatures and characters, more than most other books.

I'd recommend getting it from your library first before purchasing. What it is good though is to have on a coffee table for people to pick up which will start your own conversations on the various creatures. I did especially like the Monster Comparison Size chart at the end of the book though.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Karley Jo Johnston on August 5, 2005
Format: Paperback
I was thrilled to see this book at the local Hastings, being a monster geek and all. However, I think it could have been better:

1. Several entries were inaccurate- they claim the first Frankenstein movie was the James Whale version, which is not true. If I recall correctly, their was a silent version that was made at the very dawn of motion photography.

2. Some were redundant- there's different entries for "Living Dead" and "Zombies", along with the Gorgon and Medusa. In the, er, "real world" (as far as you can say brain-eating, walking corpses apply to it) there might be a difference, but not so much in the "reel world". (Before anyone throws a fit, let me say taht I am aware of the real-life voodoo "zombies". I just think that in movies "zombies" is practically reserved for the brain-eating type, and the Serpent and the Rainbow types should be designated some other way. Voodoo Zombies?)

3. While many obscure movie monsters were covered (Frogs? Vampire Circus? Ape from George of the Jungle?) many notables were excluded. Where's the Xenomorphs from Aliens? The Predator? E.T.? Graboids?

4. The last one might be anal of me, but there were tons of typos.

I would recommend this books for monster movie geeks (duh) but I wouldn't do so heartily.
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