This is a big book on the other side of Kiss, the brand not the band. Or more accurately, most of the merchandise produced during the 70's. Almost 400 beautiful pages chock full of toys, clothes and whatever else anyone could ever think of sticking a Kiss logo on.
While I think this is a great looking book I do have some issues with the layout of this mostly magnificent book. For starters, the captions are so small you'd have to use a magnifying glass to read them. I wish they'd been at least a couple of points larger.
There's also a few pictures that would have deserved more attention (the key rings on pages 374 and 375 being the most striking example). The sudden change of pace for the last two pages of the bubble gum cards is just plain strange (going from 15 to 18 a page). If you needed an extra page to keep the pacing at 15 you could have, for example, made the shoelace spread a single page (because that double page spread for the shoe laces makes no sense at all).
And am I the only one missing the Howard The Duck issues? Shouldn't they have been in the book? I think so. Surprisingly there are a few more examples of surprising left outs.
Despite all this sour nitpicking I really do love this book. It tells a story, of something I've come to realize I'm not that into, really well. Through reading this book it's become obvious to me that I'm more interested in the band, its members and the music than the brand. All these toys and trinkets are simply not for me.
Well almost, I do collect the odd thing and I still want that pinball machine. I wouldn't mind the dragon boot comb and will happily accept whatever anyone gives me. But you won't find me hunting down these things online. I'd rather spend my money on vinyl and books.
It's really obvious that this book is a labour of love by someone who truly enjoys the 70's era collectables. And I will happily continue to flip through it. It's generally great looking, despite my bitter tasting rant above. Well done.
In all fairness, I wish it would have been possible to award this four and a half stars.