To Scott, Paul and Mark, horror films are everything.
The year is 1983, the boom of the video age, and Scott Bradley is seventeen, unemployed and on the dole. Drifting through life, he and his friends love nothing more than to sit around drinking, talking about girls, and watching horror movies.
But things are about to change.
As the ‘video nasty’ media storm descends, their desire to find a copy of the ultimate horror film – The Evil Dead – is going to lead them to the most significant days of their young lives. As the law tightens and their way of life comes under threat from all quarters, they come to learn what truly matters to them.
A heartfelt story of friendship, loyalty and youthful rebellion, Dead Leaves is a darkly funny and brutally honest depiction of aimless life in a Midland town, and perfectly captures the impact those first few years of video had on a generation.
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Reviews of “Dead Leaves”
“Barker does what all the great authors do – he creates a world so real, not only can you reach out and touch it, you can step inside and live there.” – Joseph D’Lacey, author of Meat &Black Feathers
“A love letter to horror films, and a moving and authentic story of a teenager discovering who he is and what he wants to do with his life. Purely wonderful” – Simon Clark, author of Blood Crazy and Vampyrrhic
“A work of genuine warmth, wit and passion, a unique and vivid coming-of-age tale that should be ranked amongst the best.” – Starburst Magazine
“Barker proves two things with this new novel – (1) The Electric was not a fluke (2) He really knows his characters inside and out.” – The Eloquent Page
“Dead Leaves is no way a horror story, but it’s one that will speak to the hearts of horror fans everywhere. Recommended.” – Brutal As Hell
“A fast pasted, nostalgic look at the period where video nasties were all the British media could talk about.” – Sanitarium Magazine
“Dead Leaves is a bittersweet coming of age story, full of emotionally charged writing that manages to present a sentimental look at a bygone age without ever becoming schmaltzy. Deeply moving and perfectly realized it cements Andrew David Barker’s reputation as a top flight writer.” – The Ginger Nuts of Horror
“This Is England for the Fango crowd. Very highly recommended.” – Mark West, author of Drive and Conjure
“A well-drawn portrait of growing up different and a grimy, blood-soaked love letter to the cathartic, transformative qualities of the horror film.” – Dirge Magazine
“Kes for the video generation” – Paul Melhuish, author of Fearworld and Necroforms
“Dead Leaves is another triumph for Barker.” – James Everington, author of The Shelter and Falling Over
“It’s been years since I was released from the T of L for my part in the Video Nasties conspiracies of decades long gone. And now I must revisit this dark period again because Andrew David Barker, who was a kid during the early 1980s wrote a book about how horror films in England were destroying young lives with excessive gore and a severe lack of morality. Which is exactly what The Evil Dead’s director, Sam Raimi, his cast and crew, of which I was a significant member, were going for. I certainly paid my price for creating the gore and mayhem in the film and all I got was this book. Besides being a lively and engaging read, Andrew David Barker’s Dead Leaves demonstrates we were successful in ruining at least one generation of young Britons’ bright and eager minds. And if nothing else, Mr. Barker’s book will continue in this fine tradition. Read it and weep.” – Tom Sullivan, Special Make-Up Effects Wizard of The Evil Dead