This book is a comprehensive, giant, super-glossy coffee table book all about Tim Burton’s film adaptation of old cult TV series Dark Shadows. It’s got thorough character sketches, a behind the scenes story as to how and why the movie got made, and numerous concept sketches, all interspersed with testimonials from the actors and others attesting to how cool it was to be a part of this Burton project.

Pluses: This book is gorgeous. If you are a Burton fan or a Depp fan or even a fan of anyone else in this movie, you’ll love to have this in your nerd-collection. If you like to see behind the scenes and look at all the art, stunt work, makeup and hair, and conceptual design of an auteur director who is intensely visual, you’ll want this book out on your coffee table, at least during the Halloween season.

Minuses: Sorry to say this, but I don’t think anyone but a very die hard fan of Burton, Depp or Bonham-Carter knows this movie even exists. It seems to me a giant effort and no doubt huge expense for quite an obscure movie, that no doubt DVD extras could provide just as well. Having said that, I know very well the following that Burton has and we nerds’ love of collectibles, so I have no doubt that this book will find many happy homes.

Bottom line: It’s a gorgeous book, but it’s not really for anyone but hardcore fans and collectors.

~Prof. Jenn