Tv tie-in books and episode guides are among my guilty pleasures. Although, as always, I think some of them totally miss the point, this bunch of essays on Veronica Mars is actually better than most of the tv-show essay collections that I pick up. Maybe that's because the book is actually edited by Rob Thomas, the show's creator, primary writer, and executive producer, who also writes an introduction to each essay, talking about the behind-the-scenes, origins of ideas and themes, etc.
But I've never seen a book with such mutally exclusive book jacket marketing. The book cover says the title, Neptune Noir: Unauthorized Investigations Into Veronica Mars. The phrase "Completely Unauthorized" is emblazoned over the top of the cover. And at the bottom, "Edited by Rob Thomas, Creator of Veronica Mars."
On the back cover, Thomas is quoted, "This is a must-read for Veronica Mars fans." And lest there be any doubt about his credentials, it also tells us "Rob Thomas is the creator and executive producer of the critically-acclaimed drama Veronica Mars."
But when you open the book, the copyright page says prominently, in all caps, "The publication has not been prepared, approved, or licensed by any entity that created or produced the well-known television series Veronica Mars."
WTF? Obviously this is some sort of legal ass-covering vis a vis the network, which must be "the entity" in question (and yes, The Entity was the name of a horror movie, and sounds like it). As opposed to the person who prepared and approved the publication, and actually created and produced the series.
So in the end it's all understandable. Just a bit more, uh, aggressively contradictory in its approach than one usually sees. Hmm, maybe "aggressively contradictory" will be my new Facebook status...