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Books of 2001

Haunting of Alaizabel Cray

Like much of Scholastic Press’s output, it seems ostensibly marketed towards a teenage audience, but this is to deny the adult nature of the book. A ripping yarn with shedloads of good ideas, more than a touch of intrigue and a perfectly realised alternative London. At turns scary, exciting and fascinating.

Bad Timing and Other Stories, Molly Brown, Big Engine

In a world where books are becoming increasingly long, forcing them into the “Life’s too short to read them ” category, Molly’s delicious set of short stories is a welcome treat. Ranging from whimsical to shocking to very, very funny this set of tales has something for everybody.

Everything I Learned about Filmmaking I Learned from the Toxic Avenger, Lloyd Kaufman

A book for reprobates everywhere, Lloyd Kaufman’s combination of autobiography and devil-may-care exploitation film techniques makes this an ideal alternative to the usual Hollywood film handbook. Learn how to market the most appallingly crass films as politically subversive statements and still laugh.

In the Eyes of Mr Fury, Philip Ridley,

A disturbing novel that manages to capture the spirit of Ray Bradbury in an environment that is wholly British in tone. An effortless read that is at once nostalgic and worrying.

The Sinaloa Story, Barry Gifford,

Gifford once again proves that he is the master of economy. The combination of low life degradation and plot twists makes this one of the quickest and most satisfying reads.