agony column NOUN: A newspaper column containing advertisements chiefly about missing relatives or friends. (Known chiefly from references in Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories.)
The Agony Column is a book review and commentary website, written and edited by Rick Kleffel. I've written reviews online for nearly 20 years, starting in OtherRealms, and moving on to Masters of Terror, and the San Francisco Chronicle.
April 19, 2002 Update
For a new interview with me, by Andy Fairclough, Editor of the noted Horror World Website, look here. It will help you to understand what I'm trying to do and why I'm trying to do it.
/April 19, 2002 Update
Featuring: The Editor has acquired the services of an editor -- Jan Leininger. She makes sure it's spelled right, it makes sense, and in general does those things an editor does and does them well. Thanks, Jan!
On 2/10/2002 Rick Kleffel wrote:
>The site will include two columns weekly, generally published on Tuesdays and Fridays or Saturdays.
2/19/02: Yeah, right. Well, I've decided on Mondays and Thursdays instead of Tuesdays and Fridays. Call me mind-bogglingly un-original. I'm following in the great footsteps of Pat Holt, who times her columns for these days. Thanks for many, many thing Ms. Holt.
Whatever I can do. I'll eventually have up over 100 reviews of current and past works of literature, written over the past 20 years, naturally. I have a very aggressive reading schedule, and will include lists of works in the bullpen, so to speak, and works I'm looking forward to reading. The hope is that other readers are interested in what I take a fair amount of time to uncover, and that the reviews are clear enough so that you can tell whether or not the book is something that you might enjoy, whether or not I happen to enjoy it.
"Reviews New This Week" will get wiped every Monday morning, and will include only reviews of recent books. The Review Archive Page will be updated with a link to new books, but will be marked as updated ONLY when a "new old" review is added. Reviews new this month will be wiped on the last day of each month, and will be updated only with reviews of recent books. Got it? All of this is some slight evidence of the administrivia that is required to keep this site going.
One of the things I try to do when I'm writing reviews is NOT to just replay the plot. In fact my rule of thumb is to give less plot summary than the reader would find onthe dust jacket of the book in question. I don't need to tell you exactly what happened to tell you how well the book is written.
I'll try to talk about books and movies, how one turns into the other, and offer up a plethora of opinions. I welcome email and reviews from readers that differ from my own. I'll publish what I have time to publish, and those I think might be helpful to other readers. Before you buy a book, you might want to take a look here, to see if it's worth your hard earned money. I'll certainly tell you if it was worth mine.
Vis a vis the email: I have received email from several authors who are rather pleased with the site, and not just because they got good reviews. I'm hoping some "readers" will step up and let me know that they're reading this, and I'd love to get some dialgue going with readers as well. Do you have suggestions for what you would like to see me read and review? Please let me know. OK, I'm stepping down the pathos now.
ATTENTION ALL REVIEWERS: I'm interested in publishing other reviews. Write me for details.