Encyclopedia of Doris, The: By Cindy Crabb, 322 pgs. By Steve Hart

The Encyclopedia of Doris is a collection of stories, essays, and interviews, collected from the zine, Doris, and put into alphabetical order, hence the title: Encyclopedia.

I had just finished reading Vicious Red Relic, Love by Anna Joy Springer and was totally shocked to read the first entry in Doris about Anna. That is not a coincidence, either, because the writing in Doris is so strong and the voice so clear. In many ways, these two books are companions to each other. Doris is laid out like zine entries, so there are a variety of fonts and different-looking pages, but this goes far beyond layout. The text is really enjoyable to read.

I’m a total sucker for a good interview and the interviews in Doris are really well done. There is a certain boldness to include interviews of yourself that were for other zines, but the insight they provide to the writing strengthen the encyclopedia. Maybe more books should contain interviews with their authors.

If you like well-written zines that cover all sorts of topics, from anarchy to sex, fishing to social ecology, or high school to quitting drinking, this one’s for you. Highly recommended. –Steve Hart (Doris Press c/o Cindy Crabb, PO Box 29, Athens, OH, 45701)