Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Paperback 495: Bridge of Sand / Frank Gruber (Bantam S3926)

Paperback 495: Bantam S3926 (1st ptg, 1969)

Title: Bridge of Sand
Author: Frank Gruber
Cover artist: Uncredited [Sanford Kossin]

Yours for: $12


Best things about this cover:
  • Very late for my collection. I own it because a. it has a fully painted cover (in an era when these were giving way to the Tyranny of Text—branding/author's name inflation); and b. it's by Frank Gruber, writing here at the tail end of a loooooong career that began in the pulps (his "Pulp Jungle"—a memoir of his early writing career, is very much worth reading).
  • That said, I don't love this painting, or, more specifically, this color scheme. It definitely conveys "oppressively hot and sandy," but I just end up wishing I had clearer views of all the interesting characters. Dude in the fez wants his time in the spotlight!
  • World's tiniest minarets, stage left.
  • Apparently this guy's gun holds hand lotion: "Damn dry Egyptian weather ... wreaks havoc on my soft skin."


Best things about this back cover:
  • "Amazonian lesbian!" Top that. You can't. Game over.
  • VENGEANCE! My penchant for tales of vengeance probably also had something to do with my buying this book.
  • I call this painting "Someone Really Doesn't Like Brown Mustard."
  • Violence should not come in "potpourri" form. Really hard to take seriously.
  • "Fills the cauldron of suspense ... decants the wine of mystery ... warms the tea kettle of perversion ... etc.!"

Page 123~

It was in Ahmed Fosse's power to reveal that fame to Charles Holterman, to dangle the possibility of it before Holterman, and then ... to destroy it, just before he killed Holterman.

Ahmed knew a little bit about fame from his brother Bob. Also, this paragraph really needs one more "Holterman."


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JamiSings said...

Amazonian lesbian? Cue the Xena: Warrior Princess jokes.

Anonymous said...

I recently saw a photo slide show where this guy went to a variety of zoos to take pics of the animals. One thing he did was place white posterboard on the floors & walls of the cages. When it came time to photograph the chimp, after about 15 seconds the posterboard looked pretty much like the smudges on the back cover. No mustard was involved.

Martin OHearn said...

The painter's signature by the dancer's leg stayed uncropped on the back cover--it's Kossin. Sandy Kossin, appropriately enough.

Kyle Katz said...

Cover is signed on the back. Sanford Kossin.