418 pages
Released 10 December 2008
363 pages
Released 11 March 2010

Preferred retailers
Order direct from the
Telos Publishing website

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Order direct from the
Telos Publishing website

~ ~ ~

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Movies covered in Volume 1
(1 full chapter for each):

The Cabinet of Dr Caligari (1920)
Nosferatu A Symphony of Horror (1922)
The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
Faust (1926)
The Cat and the Canary (1927)
Dracula (1931)
Frankenstein (1931)
Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1931)
Freaks (1932)
Murders in the Rue Morgue (1932)
Vampyr (1932)
Doctor X (1932)
White Zombie (1932)
The Old Dark House (1932)
The Mummy (1932)
Island of Lost Souls (1933)
The Vampire Bat (1933)
Mystery of the Wax Museum (1933)
Murders in the Zoo (1933)
The Ghoul (1933)
The Invisible Man (1933)
The Black Cat (1934)
Mark of the Vampire (1935)
Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
Werewolf of London (1935)
Mad Love (1935)
The Black Room (1935)
The Raven (1935)
The Invisible Ray (1936)
The Walking Dead (1936)
Dracula's Daughter (1936)
The Devil-Doll (1936)
Son of Frankenstein (1939)
The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1939)
The Invisible Man Returns (1940)
Dr Cyclops (1940)
Black Friday (1940)
The Mummy's Hand (1940)
The Devil Bat (1940)
The Monster and the Girl (1941)


Movies covered in Volume 2
(1 full chapter for each):

Man Made Monster (1941)
The Devil and Daniel Webster (1941)
The Wolf Man (1941)
Ghost of Frankenstein (1942)
The Mummy's Tomb (1942)
The Undying Monster (1942)
Cat People (1942)
Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943)
I Walked with a Zombie (1943)
The Leopard Man (1943)
Captive Wild Woman (1943)
The Seventh Victim (1943)
Phantom of the Opera (1943)
Son of Dracula (1943)
Return of the Vampire (1943)
The Mad Ghoul (1943)
The Ghost Ship (1943)
Curse of the Cat People (1944)
Weird Woman (1944)
The Monster Maker (1944)
The Invisible Man's Revenge (1944)
Jungle Woman (1944)
The Mummy's Ghost (1944)
House of Frankenstein (1944)
The Mummy's Curse (1944)
The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945)
The Body Snatcher (1945)
Jungle Captive (1945)
Dead of Night (1945)
Isle of the Dead (1945)
House of Dracula (1945)
Woman Who Came Back (1945)
Strangler of the Swamp (1946)
The Flying Serpent (1946)
House of Horrors (1946)
Bedlam (1946)
Black Narcissus (1947)
Bud Abbott Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948)
Apache Drums (1951)
The Thing from Another World (1951)

Other retailers
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Written by Steven Warren Hill, with supplemental reviews by Jill Petillo, Nick Thompson, and Robert Warnock.

Each chapter covers one film, with a cast and crew list, plot summary, the best scenes and dialogue, the worst bits, mistakes, a brief on the historical context of the movie, cast and crew biographies (see next paragraph), trivia and behind-the-scenes production information, a critical review by the author and a brief and informal "second opinion" review by one of the contributors.

Includes a total of 524 deeply researched and detailed biographies (303 actor biographies - from leading roles to bit parts - and 221 biographies of directors, writers, cinematographers, composers, makeup artists, costume designers, art directors, etc.)

Illustrated throughout with stills and poster art, some rarely seen

SAMPLE PAGES From Volume Two
Page 103 | Page 221 | Page 259 | Page 323

Silver Scream - Background

In the summer of 2005 I decided to put together a submission to Telos Publishing for a book that would cover "classic horror movies" in the same style as their previously published "Vault of Horror" by Keith Topping and the in-progress "Zombiemania" by Dr Arnold T Blumberg and Andrew Hershberger. By the autumn, the submission was ready, with four sample chapters in various stages of completion, and it was sent to Telos. (The four sample chapters were Dracula, Curse of the Cat People, Apache Drums, and Werewolf of London.) Sometime in mid-winter, the word came back: yes, we're interested, and we will draw up a contract.

My provisional title was Shadows on the Screen and I came up with a cover mockup (see image below). 2006 was spent working on the book. I pushed back the first deadline. 2007 was spent working on the book, including whipping my contributors to finish their work, and rewriting the four original sample chapters. In August 2007 I lost my job of 23 years, which gave me the free time I sorely needed to finish the manuscript. In the last two weeks of work I was spending 8-10 hours a day researching and writing. The completed draft was too long, and the last step was cutting some material (mostly making summaries and some biographies shorter).

The final first draft was sent to Telos in September 2007. In May 2008 the decision was made to split the work into two volumes, add a new section on historical context to each chapter, and reinstate the cut material. A title change was made and cover artwork commissioned. Rewrites to Volume 1 were completed in July 2008. Illustrative material was gathered and the package was sent on its way for layout work. Rewrites to Volume 2 were completed in October 2008.

Original cover mockup by the author

Latest News

30 September 2010: We've almost reached October, the best month for horror fans. This October will be very special...I'm giving a lecture, followed by a book signing, at Harper College in Palatine, Illinois (Chicago northwest suburbs), on Thursday, October 28. This is a homecoming of sorts for me, as I'm a graduate of Harper College. I hope to see you there! In November, I'll be doing a signing at Chicago TARDIS (see the entry below, from 16 February). I may not have date/time details until we're nearly upon that event, so take my recommendation and just show up for the whole weekend. :)

22 March 2010: The Zone Horror website calls Silver Scream Volume Two an "exceptional read" in today's Horror News.

22 March 2010: I am invited once again to be the Guest of Honor at MAGE Concinnity, the annual convention of the MAGE student organization at the Milwaukee School of Engineering in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on 1 May 2010. With Volume Two in my hands, I'll talk (again with contributor Rob Warnock) about the classic horror movies of the 1940s and how the era came to an end. We had fun at last year's Concinnity (I still need to get some of those pictures up!) and will do so again...

20 March 2010: Here's an online review (8/10) of Volume One: Ty Power writing for Review Graveyard. "Highly recommended for followers of early outstanding horror."

14 March 2010: Silver Scream Volume 1 is available at the Kansas City, Kansas Public Library, the Phoenix Public Library, the Pasadena Public Library, libraries in Aurora, Des Plaines and Park Ridge, Illinois, and the British Library in Wetherby and the library at Cambridge University. Ask for it at your local library!

12 March 2010: Silver Scream Volume 2 debuts! It is now in stock at Telos Publishing and will shortly be available via other retailers!

16 February 2010: There is a good chance I will be making a personal appearance to promote Silver Scream and to talk about horror films and their place in popular culture this October in the Chicago area. More on this when information becomes available. Also, I expect to be signing copies of Silver Scream in November at the Chicago TARDIS convention. See the Chicago TARDIS website for convention details.

26 June 2009: This review has apparently been online for a while, but it's only recently been brought to my attention... the UK website sci-fi online has a very nice ("8 out of 10") review: sci-fi online review of Silver Scream Volume 1

12 June 2009: Volume 2 has entered the layout and indexing stage, and is expected to be released this autumn.

8 May 2009: For some reason, I've never posted a link to the promotional video. So here it is, a "music video" I edited to generate some excitement for the book. It includes multiple shots from all 80 films covered, rhythmically edited to match the music. I had a blast picking the shots, some of which only last a few frames. I hope you enjoy it! Link: Silver Scream promotional video

24 April 2009: Total Sci-Fi (formerly Dreamwatch) have posted a review: Total Sci-Fi Online review of Silver Scream Volume 1

15 April 2009: Working on some local (Chicago) book signings and hope to have one or two announcements soon.

1 April 2009: I have been invited to be the Guest of Honor at MAGE Concinnity, the annual convention of the MAGE student organization at the Milwaukee School of Engineering in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on 4 April 2009. I and contributor Rob Warnock will talk about the book and its development, and discuss classic horror movies and their evolution. We will then sit in on a panel discussion about the best and worst of science fiction. Admission is free, so stop on by if you have the opportunity.

27 January 2009: My next two public appearances will be in southern California in February. I will participate in a Telos Publishing panel (on Friday) and a classic horror movies panel (on Sunday) at the Gallifrey One convention at the Los Angeles Airport Marriott over President's Day weekend (13-15 February). Also present will be the book's designer (and author of Zombiemania!), Dr Arnold T Blumberg; leading the panel will be the Telos man himself, David J Howe. On 14 February, the three of us (also accompanied by author Sam Stone) will visit the horror bookstore Dark Delicacies in Burbank for a book signing at 4:00 pm. Hope to see you there!

19 January 2009: The book receives a "Grade A" review from Tim Janson of mania.com! Read the review on this page.

23 December 2008: I now have copies of the book in hand. It looks and feels terrific, and I'm thrilled with how it's turned out.

10 December 2008: Telos Publishing now has the book in stock and ready to ship! Retailers, especially North American retailers, will not have stock until after the holidays, so if you want a copy in time for gift-giving, order directly from Telos right away!

20 November 2008: I and two of my contributors, Rob and Nick, will give a talk on the book and classic horror films at Chicago TARDIS 2008 in Lombard, Illinois on 28 November.


Initialised 8 May 2009