Title: The Case of the Half-Wakened Wife
Author: Erle Stanley Gardner
Cover artist: Mitchell Hooks
Yours for: $7
Best things about this cover:
- Truly incredible design. Most of these Cardinal reprints are dreadfully boring, but this one is gorgeous - subtle, yet eye-grabbing. I swear to you that until this very second, when I scanned the cover (and thus blew it up to an abnormally large size), I did not notice the silhouette of the man in the fedora inside those slashing black lines. Very nice effect.
- "Half-Wakened Wife" really really wants to be "Half-Naked Wife" every time I look at it.
- I know that when *I* am half-wakened, I can't help but reach blindly for my revolver. It's just normal human instinct.
Best things about this back cover:
- "Chiseler" is one of the all-time great words in the crime lexicon.
- "This is a Genuine Cardinal Edition" - I'm trying to imagine all the bootleg and rip-off versions out there: Oriole? Cardinale? Sorny?
- Gardner's signature remains certifiably insane.
Ellen Cushing once more raised her voice. "I guess you've got to come out, Mother."