Book Review: The Secret History of Twin Peaks, by Mark Frost

Book Review: The Secret History of Twin Peaks, by Mark Frost

Newspaper clippings, personalised documentation, type written accounts and symbolic photography tell the history of America’s most notorious fictional town.


When David Lynch and Mark Frost announced that they would be returning to the fictional and violence-plagued town of Twin Peaks, fans (both from the time of the original television broadcast and those more recently discovering the series) couldn’t believe it was, to quote Carel Struycken’s character, The Giant, “…happening again.”

Soon after came the announcement of a new book about the town’s history, complete with a multi-cast audio edition featuring original cast members (read our review).

The Secret History of Twin Peaks print edition is a collection of articles, artefacts and reflective notes, collated by someone – and for diehard fans, the identity is quickly obvious – identified only as ‘The Archivist’. The documents have been discovered and forwarded to an FBI Agent, whose initials (ironically) are T.P., for cataloguing, assessment and verification.

Over the course of more than 360 pages we are given a glimpse into the past of both the place and the people – some very familiar and, others, new. There appear to be some discrepancies and errors, but as Frost said, they created the mythos, they can spin it as they see fit. As with all recollections, over time memories fade and change – this is both a bugbear and blessing of realism in a world of wonder.

The beauty of this book lies not only in its detailed accounts, but in the detailed presentation – newspaper clippings, personalised letterhead and documentation, type written accounts and symbolic photography.

While the aural delights of the audiobook are a feast for the ears, there is more to be discovered through the print edition, which makes the pairing a must have for the show’s devoted fans. With the audiobook running in at 10 hours, combining it with this edition will make the wait for Season 3 a little more bearable.

If you haven’t already done so already, grab the book’s visual and aural editions, the Blu-ray boxset of Seasons 1 & 2, which includes the prequel movie Fire Walk with Me and many hours of deleted scenes (and maybe some Cherry Pie and a ‘damn fine’ cup of coffee), then prepare to return, in 2017, to a place that is, as Agent Dale Cooper describes it, “both wonderful and strange.”

Reviewed by Glen Christie

Released by: Pan Macmillan Australia
Release Date: October 2016
RRP: $39.99 hardcover

Rating out of 10:  9

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