Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Paperback 228: Crucible / Ben Ames Williams (Popular Library 113)

Paperback 228: Popular Library 113 (1st ptg, 1947)

Title: Crucible
Author: Ben Ames Williams
Cover artist: uncredited

Yours for: $12

Best things about this cover:

  • "Crucible," Or "The Andrews Sisters Go To Hell"
  • Sadness! Fear! Uh ... Sultry Boredom!

Best things about this back cover:
  • Ugh, text. And not even a break or indention to separate the paragraphs. So lazy.
  • If those three on the cover are "Mary, Phil and Barbara" ... I might have to read this book. I need to know more about "Phil"
  • I can only hope that Ben Ames Williams went on to write a novel called "Leave the Strange Woman to Heaven"

Page 123~

Q. You went into the office? A. I stood in the doorway and reached the switch.
Q. Did that light the hall? A. Yes, enough.
Q. Did you see anything? A. I saw a woman lying on the hall floor.
Q. And you did what? A. Turned on the hall light to look at her.

"If you love page after page of mundane interrogation transcripts, you will love ... Crucible! If you loved Arthur Miller's "The Crucible," on the other hand ... well, that's historically impossible. It won't be performed for the first time for another six years."



mr said...

Personally, I think enjoying Arthur Miller's "The Crucible" is also humanly impossible, but that's only since I saw it performed by a high school drama group wearing sneakers with untied laces.

Erik said...

What I want to know is, how did the Phantom get into their crucible?

Dirt Diggler said...

"Here is a modern novel of penetrating insight ..." , which explains the three differing facial expressions. --- Just imagine all three women at the receiving end of psycho therapy sessions ... (What could be more "modern" than that)?

In addition, look at the visual symbol of the beefy, purple,Rodin "Thinker" figure sitting on his cot (therapy couch) trying to "sort it all out".

Very "modern" indeed.

Eunice said...

Assuming, from left to right, that they are indeed Mary, Phil, and Barbara...

Mary and Barbara have a drag queeniness to them (tell me the brunette doesn't look like s/he's taking off a wig!), so I'm guessing Phil is in fact the only girl and that look of horror is because Mary forgot to lock the bathroom door. Hence the shamed tear drop. Barbara's just half asleep. Of course Phil's wearing a clown ruffle, so she has no room to judge.

Tulse said...

Yep, Erik, I was thinking imprisoned purple superhero as well. Perhaps Crucible is actually his nemesis, an horrific three headed monstrosity that resulted when a '40s sister act got caught in a nuclear explosion.

Thomas Miller said...

Siamese triplets!

libwitch said...

I am assuming the cover shows Ellen, Mary and Barbara and the husband sulking on the cot.

Phil is nowhere to be found, because the artist can only draw men in teh most abstract of senses, and even then, only if they look like a cross between something in a terrible ST jumpsuit and a offspring of the Thinker.

Which might a an improvement over his females, who are look sort of...campy is too kind.

Lynn Sinclair said...

Hmm ... I know those women: Dorothy Lamour, Judy Garland and Lana Turner.

Michael5000 said...

Why so glum, Mr. Purple? Don't you realize that most of the other prisoners don't get to have a trio of bimbos in their spacious cells?