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Hollywood North

by Michael Libling

“Libling’s assured, quietly menacing debut [is] based on his World Fantasy Award–nominated novella of the same title. . . . Fans of Stand by Me and the like will find much to enjoy.” —Publishers Weekly

It’s the 1960s, and Gus Berry is coming of age in Trenton, a small town on the north shore of Lake Ontario. The place isn’t known for much—unless you count the menacing stray dogs, plant explosions, plane collisions, and regular drownings. The adults seem to take it all in stride, but Gus can’t shake the feeling of impending doom. His friend Annie Barker doesn’t share Gus’s dark thoughts; she believes in things. So Gus goes about his days, surviving school, trying to live up to his widowed mother’s expectations, and growing increasingly obsessed with movies and TV shows. Indeed, he scripts his life to make it way more exciting and adventurous than it actually is.

Gus is clearly a boy who wants things, which makes Jack Levin the perfect friend. He’s a local hero famous for finding stuff : a message in a bottle, a meteorite, a long-lost wedding ring. And when Jack makes his most mysterious discovery yet, Gus and Annie are drawn with him into an investigation of Trenton’s past. Guided by their curiosity, they soon uncover a malignant darkness behind the town’s senseless tragedies.

In Hollywood North, World Fantasy Award–nominated author Michael Libling “spins a tale of movies and memories, nightmares and nostalgia, with such a frightening secret at its core, that you’ll understand why, even though you can go home again, you might end up wishing you didn’t” (Ian Rogers, author of Every House Is Haunted).

“[A] fine first novel . . . Bradbury might have sketched out this mode in the darker parts of Dandelion Wine and the entirety of Something Wicked This Way Comes, but contemporary authors such as Libling are showing us refinements of sensibility and sense of wonder that the old Waukeganian never dreamed of.” —Locus

Publisher: Open Road Media

About the Author

Michael Libling is a World Fantasy Award-nominated author and former broadcaster. Character-driven, with recurrent strains of dark humor, Michael's fiction tends to defy categorization, appealing to a broad range of readers, encompassing genre and literary fiction. His short fiction has appeared in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, Asimov's Science Fiction, Realms of Fantasy, Amazing Stories, OnSpec and such anthologies as Ellen Datlow's The Year's Best Fantasy & Horror, Rich Horton’s Year’s Best Science Fiction & Fantasy, and many others. He also has a number of non-fiction credits.

HOLLYWOOD NORTH: A NOVEL IN SIX REELS is his debut novel. Based on true events and set in Michael’s childhood hometown of Trenton, Ontario, this coming-of-age mystery contains elements of both fantasy and horror, with special appeal to fans of vintage TV and movies.

Michael is the father of three daughters and lives in Montreal, Quebec with his wife, Pat, and a dog named Piper. He claims to be one of only seven North American authors who does not own a cat. You can find out more about him at, where he has been known to blog on occasion.