Until recently, the best book about Rod Serling was a video. You can buy the 1997 PBS American Masters special “Rod Serling: Submitted for Your Approval” in many places, and you might even find it for free on YouTube. Look around.

The video is worth seeing for its use of Rod’s own work to document his life, borrowing from his biographical Playhouse 90 script “The Velvet Alley.” Now the written word has finally caught up. Two excellent books have come out with balanced and insightful accounts Rod’s life and inspirations…

Rod Serling: His Life, Work, and Imagination by Nicholas Parisi explores Rod Serling’s entire body of work, and includes never-published insights drawn directly from Serling’s personal correspondence, unpublished writings, speeches, and unproduced scripts.

UNKNOWN SERLING: An Episodic History by Amy Boyle-Johnston is painstakingly researched, well-written and respectful of Rod Serling and his legacy. The first portion, out as an e-book, has tales you haven’t heard: The Bradbury, Kennedy, Pentagon and WWII stories. Excellent, inexpensive, and available at Amazon for their Kindle reader, or for the free Kindle reader app on IOS and Android.

As I Knew Him, My Dad, Rod Serling by Anne Serling is a touching remembrance of her father. She writes: “In Twilight Zone reruns, I search for my father in the man on the screen, but I can’t always find him there. Instead, he appears in unexpected ways. Memory summoned by a certain light, a color, a smell–and I see him again on the porch of our old red lakeside cottage, where I danced on the steps as a child.”