Books: Three of a kind - Behind The Smoke and Mirrors of PR

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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

Where the Truth Lies
Edited by Julia Hobsbawm
Atlantic Books
£12.99

This highly readable collection of essays - written by journalists, PR practitioners and academics - is not so much a practical guide for businesses as an investigation of the morality of public relations and the role that PR plays in today's media. With (apparently) honest essays from both camps, this book offers a well-written and engaging overview of the PR debate.

Best of its kind

Public Relations: A practical guide to the basics
Philip Henslowe
Kogan Page
£16.99

Infinitely less engaging than Hobsbawm's effort, but far more useful as a guide to the practical realities of working in, or around, public relations. It is clearly laid out and its textbook tone enhances the clarity. Though it's not a page-turner, this dense text should suffice as an in-depth ready reference for the PR newbie. It does what it says on the tin, offering indeed a practical guide to PR.

Could be useful

Can We Do That?!
Peter Shankman
Wiley
£13.99

Underneath the painful colloquialisms, smug self-promotion and condescending tone, this book contains some useful insights into the world of PR's 'outrageous stunts'. Most of the text aims to take the reader through amusing, thoroughly explained, case studies. Retrospective summaries, crisis-management tips and a handy resources chapter are all of use - if you can take the writing style. Of minor interest.

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