Thursday, December 20, 2007

Paperback 57: The Crime is Murder / Helen Nielsen (Curtis 6105)

Paperback 57: Curtis Books 6105 (1st ptg?, n.d. - circa 1970)

Title: The Crime is Murder
Author: Helen Nielsen
Cover artist: photo cover

Best things about this cover:

  • O my god, they killed Beethoven! You bastards!
  • A million bonus points to whoever can identify the piece of music featured on this cover.
  • Again, another ugly, post-1960 book. The only reason I own this is my minor, short-lived obsession with Helen Nielsen. She was a reasonably big name in (semi-) hard-boiled crime fiction in the 40s and 50s, but then, poof, gone. I'm really intrigued by women who wrote "tough guy" crime fiction before, say, Sue Grafton. This book appears to have little if anything "hard-boiled" about it, but female hardboiled writers from mid-century are hard to come by, so I snatch up their books whenever I (cheaply) can. Nielsen's writing was featured in the (wonderful, essential) mid-90s anthology Hard-Boiled (eds. Pronzini and Adrian).

Best thing about this back cover:

  • I'm not familiar with the use of "lay" in that last sentence. Or else ... I am familiar with it, and this book is a different genre than I'd imagined.



Michael5000 said...

This is why I should never read P.S. at work. "Desperate to lay the ghost of Martin Cornish"? What the hell? Fortunately, my snorting laughter will likely be mistaken for Yuletide cheer.

Anonymous said...

By now I'm sure you know this means "lay to rest".

Anonymous said...

The broken Beethoven bust should've been a clue - it's Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata Third Movement.

And, no, I'm not a genius - my wife recognized it in about 10 seconds. Since she's a concert pianist she's played it.