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Mark Frost

Twin Peaks – The Final Dossier – Mark Frost (2017)

  • novel

For a moment I thought that I had missed one of Frost’s books, but it appear that this companion to The Secret History was actually published after the broadcast of season 3. Or at least, the book seems to come after the proceedings of that third season.

I had not made the link, but the previous book is a dossier compiled by an “archivist” who is revealed in the book. Another archivist takes over and in the end the archive falls in the hands of the FBI where agent Tamara Preston investigated it. Preston is, of course, Tammy in the third season, the beautiful lady that joins the Blue Rose task force.

The Final Dossier is a little less of a dossier as the previous book. Gordon Cole asked Preston in the aftermath of the happenings in season 3 to investigate further. Preston compiled her findings and wrapped them up in some sort of novel-style, but in fact it is a dossier per person or event. In this way Preston fills the 25 years gap between the original series and the third one for several characters. There are dossiers about the Hayward family, Judy, Philip Jeffries, of course Dale Cooper, etc. Other characters are extensively written about in dossiers not specific to themselves.

Much more than The Secret History, The Final Dossier put the events of the three series in perspective. A simple example, we learn when, how and why Dr. Jacoby left Twin Peaks and eventually returned to be Dr. Amp. Similarly Preston tried to reconstruct the whereabouts of “The Double” (‘bad Cooper’) and comes with some theories that are not apparent in the series. Similar clues can be found about Garland Briggs and his dealings with William Hastings and Ruth Davenport.

Do not expect answers to all questions raised in the series or wrap-ups of all open story-lines of the third series, but Frost being one of the writers of the stories giving suggestions or even perspective himself, makes this book a pretty valuable source to try to make sense of things. Some things at least!

2017 Flatiron Books, isbn 1250163307

The Secret History Of Twin Peaks * Mark Frost (2016)

  • novel

The brilliant series of Twin Peaks are usually connected to director David Lynch. Lynch was only one of the creators though, Mark Frost being the other. In all the fuss around ’25 year later’, again all attention seems to go to Lynch. And there we have Mark Frost himself publishing a Twin Peaks book just before the launch of the third series. Frost even did an “AMA” (‘ask me anything’) on Reddit a little while back.

So is Frost’s book going to give all the answers about Twin Peaks’ mysteries? The title suggests it does not. “A Novel” it says on the cover. Actually, it is not really a novel either. The book is presented as a found dossier about Twin Peaks, its surroundings, its inhabitants and -indeed- its mysteries.

Let me start by saying that the book is not about the events of the series! It is not even about the same time in which the events of the series take place. The book starts way earlier and ends somewhat later. The book is hardly about characters from the series, but some of them are included. Sometimes it are rather the parents of characters of the series that have a role in the book, or people who are featured in the series marginally are the most important characters of the book.

Like I said, the book is not a story, it is a dossier. An “archivist” got the files from his predecessor and commented on them. Again later an FBI agent gets the files and again commented on them. The files can be anything from notes from personal diaries to top secret files from shady government organisations, field notes of investigations, newspaper clippings and what not.

The book starts around the time the first settlers come to live in the area and it is largely about UFOs. Many times the contents seem more fitting for the X-Files with presidents who know things, governments within governments, etc.

During the course of the book a different light from what we learned from the series is cast upon a few characters that we know. In this way we do learn a few things that the series left open (such as Major Briggs’ secret work) and the Black Lodge and Owl Cave get quite a different meaning, but it is not like you are going to be let in all open questions that the series series, just a few. I do wonder if these new angles will find their way into the new season.

What is a bit too bad is that Frost gave his pompous writing style to almost every person in the book, from Dr. Laurence Jacoby to a 16 year old Andrew Packard.

“The Secret History Of Twin Peaks” makes a fun read, especially when you know the names, but it is not much more than a fun read. You are not ‘missing out’ on the series when you do not read it, nor will the series make more sense when you do.

The book comes in a quite luxury edition with a ‘double cover’, two colour print and thick paper.

2016 Flatiron Books, isbn 1250075580