Show Them the Doors : More Books on the Dead Rock Star Promise to Crowd Shelves

Until recently, the 1980 paperback biography, "No One Here Gets Out Alive," was considered the book about Jim Morrison.

Written by rock journalist Jerry Hopkins and Doors insider Danny Sugerman, the Warner Books' title is headed for its 20th printing as a mass-market paperback after nine printings as a trade paperback.

Meanwhile, "The Doors' Illustrated History" (1983), also by Sugerman, is in its eighth printing. And "Riders on the Storm: My Life With Jim Morrison and the Doors," by Doors' drummer John Densmore (1990, Delacorte Press) is in its fifth printing.

The shelves promise to get even more crowded from now through fall, during the year of the 20th anniversary of Morrison's death. Among the titles:

* "Break on Through," by James Riordan and Jerry Prochnicky, due in May from William Morrow & Co. Based on dozens of interviews with Morrison cronies, the biography will analyze Morrison, his influences and cultural impact.

Riordan is a former rock journalist who has also worked in the recording industry. Prochnicky has been collecting Doors materials for 20 years. According to Riordan, their book will "disprove" the official cause of Morrison's death, which was attributed to heart failure.

Promises Riordan: "We will also explore the 'whys' of Morrison--why he was allowed to behave the way he did. Why people didn't confront him more and why they were so intimidated by him."

* "Dark Star," a biography by Dylan Jones, due in April from Viking Studio. It was originally published by Britain's Bloomsbury Press. Jones, editor of Britain's best-selling men's magazine, Arena, says his book is more critical than "books that have made Morrison out to be a saint."

Says Jones: "I think (Morrison's) been built up into far more of a rock god than he was. He was incredibly bogus and superficial and in danger of being found out . . . . I think it's true that dying was his best career move."

* "The Essential Jim Morrison" (a tentative title), a collection of Morrison interviews over the years assembled by rock journalist Jerry Hopkins (who conducted about half a dozen Morrison interviews. Due in July from Britain's Plexus Books; an American publishing deal is also anticipated.

* "Mr. Mojo Risin'," by David Dalton, due this month from St. Martin's Press. Dalton, author of the critically admired "James Dean: The Mutant King," delivers an essay/exploration of Morrison, who once took the letters of his name and came up with the anagram, "Mr. Mojo Risin.' "

* "Morrison: A Feast of Friends," by Morrison associate Frank Lisciandro, due this month from Warner Books. A former Morrison chum who worked on the volumes of Morrison's posthumously published poetry, Lisciandro has compiled firsthand reminiscences from about two dozen Morrison associates. "They're people who spent more than one night with him in a motel room, or had more than one drink with him," says Lisciandro. (This marks Lisciandro's second Morrison book, following 1982's "An Hour for Magic.")

* "The Doors' Complete Book of Lyrics," compiled by Danny Sugerman, due in the fall from Hyperion Press. A coffee-table book featuring the group's lyrics, which were largely written by Morrison and guitarist Robby Krieger, it also boasts numerous "never-before-seen" photos.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World
61°