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Books

Here's a few short reviews of some of the most commonly available books here in the UK.

"KISS - Virgin MoDERN iCoNS" (4.99, published by Virgin, ISBN 1-85227-688-6). It's a small hardback book (a bit smaller than A5 size) that is quote 'packed to the hilt with facts and essential quotations from the idols and those who knew them, loved them, worked with them, envied them and hated them'.

It has a well written introduction by Sylvie Simmons (of Kerrang! fame) and it contains loads of cool colour pictures, interesting facts and brilliant quotes (taken from the UK press over the years). The quotes are mainly from the band but also from others such as Gene's mum, Cher and others.

Ok, as usual there are some (small) mistakes, and once again the non make-up eras seem to have been brushed aside (there's only one picture of Bruce), but this book is definitely worth getting hold of - it's a bargain at just less than a fiver. Interestingly there have only been 7 other bands than have made it into the MoDERN iCoNs series of books, I thought we'd have to wait much longer to see KISS up there with the rest of them, thanks Virgin!

Guitar World Presents KISS (10.99, Hal Leonard, ISBN 0-7935-8078-1). Found this book at Tower Records, Birmingham. Basically it's just various Guitar World interviews from over the last few years (including quite a good one of Paul & Bruce from around the time Alive III was released). If you've already got the Guitar World KISS special that came out in 1995 then don't bother with this - its exactly the same apart from a couple of newer interviews (and the book doesn't have any colour photos).

KISS Revenge Is Sweet (12.95, Joe Stevens, published by Omnibus, ISBN 0-7119-5820-3). This is a UK book that's well worth the money, it contains loads of KISS facts from the beginning in the 70's right through to the re-union tour. Unlike most other books this one also has some really cool non-make up photos along with a full discography in the back. I understand that there was a bit of controversy as to whether this book was a rip off of the original KISS faq, but as far as I'm concerned KISS history is KISS history, anyone should be able to publish it.

KISS The Hottest Band In The Land (9.99, Michael Heatley, published by UFO music, ISBN 1-873884-74-5). Another UK book that's a 'must have'. This one is written from a UK point of view and contains lots of UK photos (such as the famous 70's London pictures). It also contains pictures of various pieces of KISS merchandise from through the years and like 'Revenge Is Sweet' above, it also contains a history of the band from the beginning to the re-union tour. This book is worth buying for the pictures alone.

KISS Live! (4.95, Mick St Michael , published by Omnibus, ISBN 0-7119-6008-9). This is basically a cut down version of 'Revenge Is Sweet', except it contains a large pull-out poster. It's worth buying if you already have 'Revenge Is Sweet' though as it does has a few different pictures and only costs a fiver!

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