Review: The Halloween Encyclopedia

Heavy on trick and shy on treat!

The Halloween Encyclopedia
by Lisa Morton
Hardcover: 263 pages
Publisher: McFarland; 2 edition (April 27, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0786460741
ISBN-13: 978-0786460748

My thoughts:

While I found most of the book interesting, I was surprised at the amount of opinion presented as fact. I was truly shocked at the lack of documentation.

“It has been said that ‘Halloween is to gays what St. Patrick’s is to the Irish,’ and there has been speculation that Halloween may have become popular with gays partly as a night to celebrate and to “let off steam” in the wake of the AIDS epidemic (and possibly eight years of the Reagan Administration, which saw more attempts to oppress gays and gay rights).”

I googled the quote “Halloween is to gays what St. Patrick’s is to the Irish” and got only one hit — this book—. I’d like to see some footnotes for some of these quotes. The author hides behind words like “speculation” and “possibly” as cover for her opinions. While she may be considered an expert on the topic, I’d like to see the sources.

The book is packed with graphics, but they are in black and white. On page 55, she covers Halloween colors, it’s a shame that she decided not to show us those colors.

I wanted to like the book, but the author’s political and social opinions tainted what should have been an excellent book. The absence of color pictures was inexcusable. The biggest nail in the coffin would have to be the price of the book, $75.00. The value simply is not there.

I can’t recommend this book for anyone other than those who can throw away $75 bucks.


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