Kim Newman is a phenomenon; maybe not a supernatural one, but the possibility should not be ruled out. As anyone who has read his previous books will be aware, Newman must know more about the cinema of terror than just about anyone in the United Kingdom, and perhaps the world, since the movie waterfronts he covers include those of Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, South America, Bollywood, Scandinavia, Western Europe and the post-Soviet states. That anyone could have found enough waking hours in a lifetime to have seen so many thousands of creepy films, a lot of them outrageous junk, is remarkable. (Who else but Mr N would have had the tenacity to have sat through the likes of Motor Home Massacre or Head Cheerleader Dead Cheerleader or Teenage Hooker Became a Killing Machine? He has suffered, so that we need not.) That he manages to remain thoughtful, discriminating and often very witty about the genre is little short of astonishing.