Showing posts with label Gerald Gregg. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gerald Gregg. Show all posts

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Paperback 776: Ill Met By Moonlight / Leslie Ford (Dell 6)

Paperback 776: Dell 6 (1st ptg, 1943)

Title: Ill Met By Moonlight
Author: Leslie Ford
Cover artist: Gerald Gregg

Yours for: $10

Dell6

Best things about this cover:

  • Ew, that red. Seems like the title should be "The Band-Aid Was Insufficient."
  • I keep reading this "I'll Met …" and thinking "that's not grammar."
  • Surely one of the dullest of Dell covers. In their defense, it is a Very early Dell, and I'm not sure they knew exactly what the hell they were doing yet.
  • I don't think the eyeball-in-the-keyhole was ever this big again. Love it.


Dell6bc

Best things about this back cover:

  • Cursive? Really? Could you not afford a font-ist? Or a second color?
  • Those are some gigantic sailboats.
  • Who is this "Jo" guy? "Jo Village," "Jo Dock" … aw crap, that's a "T"! $&%^ing cursive!


Page 123~

"And then when he came to, days later, he was married to her. I suppose he did the decent thing."

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Paperback 757: Hammett Homicides / Dashiell Hammett (Dell 223)

Paperback 757: Dell 223 (1st ptg, 1948)

Title: Hammett Homicides
Author: Dashiell Hammett
Cover artist: Gerald Gregg

Yours for: $30

Dell223-1

Best things about this cover:
  • Taste the (lead) rainbow!
  • Uh, guys? I think it's probably dead now.
  • I see a pretty butterfly.
  • Gerald Gregg is my favorite early, semi-abstract, non-sleazy cover artist.

Dell223bc

Best things about this back cover:
  • [ahem] … MAPBACK!
  • So iconic—Hammett's S.F.!
  • Sausaleto? What the?! … aw, I can't stay mad at you, mapback! Come here!

Page 123~ (opening paragraph of "The Main Death")

The captain told me Hacken and Begg were handling the job. I caught them leaving the detectives' assembly room. Begg was a freckled heavyweight, as friendly as a Saint Bernard puppy, but less intelligent. Lanky Detective-Sergeant Hacken, not so playful, carried the team's brains behind his worried hatchet face.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Paperback 736: She Ate Her Cake / Blair Treynor (Dell 186)

Paperback 736: Dell 186 (1st ptg, 1947)

Title: She Ate Her Cake
Author: Blair Treynor
Cover artist: Uncredited [Gerald Gregg]

Yours for: $12

Dell186

Best things about this cover:
  • Hell yeah she did! Good for her.
  • She ate her cake, then stood near the window and shot at birds.
  • Pretty dang racy for a '40s Dell cover.

Dell186bc

Best things about this back cover:
  • Mapback!
  • Chickens! 
  • I'm not sure where to go after "Chickens." Not sure how you top "Chickens."

Page 123~

"Well then, why not come back to Los Angeles when I leave? You can go places with me. Now that Al is gone, I'm Mr. Big."
"Yeah, Mr.-Big-on-the-Lam."

Yeesh, I've heard better gangster patter at crossword puzzle conventions. Come on!

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Paperback 676: Rope / Alfred Hitchcock [No Author Credit] [Don Ward] (Dell 262)

Paperback 676: Dell 262 (1st ptg, 1948)

Title: Rope
Author: Uncredited [Don Ward] ("from the famous play by Patrick Hamilton")
Cover artist: Gerald Gregg

Yours for: $25

Dell262

Best things about this cover:
  • Hello, handsome.
  • Fantastic early movie tie-in. Weird that there is No Writing Credit, anywhere. I do not think that Alfred Hitchcock "wrote" this, in any meaningful sense of that word. I thought "novelizations" got credit. But maybe not in this era (?).
  • Gerald Gregg's cityscape is an understated but gorgeous detail.

Dell262bc

Best things about this back cover:
  • Hell yeah, mapback! 3D mapback!
  • I've seen more interesting mapbacks, but I do like how much detail you can see in this house. The arc of the coffee table, the tile pattern in the bathroom. 
  • That keyhole eyeball really is one of the great icons in paperback history. Up there with the damned kangaroo.

Page 123~

Something seemed to be slowly tearing in Phillip's mind, destroying the fabric of his slim residue of control.

Wow. "The fabric of his slim residue of control" has all the elegance of a rusted-out Ford Fiesta.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Friday, January 25, 2013

Paperback 597: The Blackbirder / Dorothy B. Hughes (Dell 149)

Paperback 597: Dell 149 (1st ptg, 1947)

Title: The Blackbirder
Author: Dorothy B. Hughes
Cover artist: Uncredited [Gerald Gregg]

Yours for: $10

Dell149

Best things about this cover:
  • I'm no ornithologist, but ... blackbird? Really? Is there a purple-taloned raptor variety I'm not aware of?
  • Those are the most intestinal-looking talons I've ever seen. 
  • I hope that guy's dead, because otherwise—that crotch-talon, ouch.
  • His feet are so dainty. If I don't look at his weird facial expression, I could almost feel moved by his unfortunate circumstances.

Dell149bc

Best things about this back cover:
  • Well clearly the best things is Jacques (not pictured).
  • Ironically, Popin didn't like it when people just popped in. This is why he lives in the middle of fucking nowhere, with only Jacques to ... do whatever Jacques does.
  • I like the geographical / regional touches: snow, mountains, adobe house ...

Page 123~
Her skirt was a thin sheet of ice from below her hips.
Well, that's one way to call a woman 'frigid,' I guess.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Monday, October 15, 2012

Paperback 572: The Innocent Mrs. Duff / Elisabeth Sanxay Holding (Dell 194)

Paperback 572: Dell 194 (1st ptg, 1947)

Title: The Innocent Mrs. Duff
Author: Elisabeth Sanxay Holding
Cover artist: Gerald Gregg

Yours for: $20
Dell194.MrsDuff
Best things about this cover:
  • Love this cover, mainly because I had No idea what I was looking at at first (and still get vaguely confused every time I look at it now). At first I thought the shape inside the bottle was some kind of high-heeled shoe. Then I thought the shot glass was the barrel of some gun that the man had laid on the table. Now I understand that it's really just a depressed drunk guy slouching forward on some kid of bar, but the strange arrangements of shapes is still really intriguing. The twinkle of light on the rim of the glass is my favorite part..
  • Also love the extended flourish on the capital "T" in "The"—makes the word seem as if it has emanated from the bottle.
  • Ooh, "crime map on the back cover"—let's check it out.

Dell194bc.MrsDuff

Best things about this back cover:
  • Love the excessively detailed Floor Plan. No toilet in the place, but ... minor detail.
  • That is a very, very odd place for a carousel. 
  • The text boxes marking locations are comically unnecessary. Surprised there aren't "Tree" and "Grass" boxes. Of *all* the things in this painting, the *one* thing I'd expect to get a text box explanation (the carousel) is the one that doesn't have one.

Page 123~

Locked in his room, he lay down on the bed and fell asleep at once. He waked with a start, in a flame of anger against Reggie. She wants to leave me here, does she? All right. Let her go. Let her go to hell.

When I read this, all I hear is the voice of Charlton Heston in "Planet of the Apes."

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Paperback 498: Ride the Pink Horse / Dorothy B. Hughes (Dell 210)

Paperback 498: Dell 210 (1st ptg, 1948)

Title: Ride the Pink Horse
Author: Dorothy B. Hughes
Cover artist: [Gerald Gregg]

Yours for: $10

Dell210.RidePink

Best things about this cover:
  • That zombie is going to Town on that horse flank!
  • "Riding the Pink Horse" would make a great slang phrase / euphemism. Maybe for ... when you are consuming lots of Pepto Bismol. Ask me about my two other suggestions! (warning: they involve sexuality and menstrual flow, respectively)
  • I know some carnival rides give people motion sickness, but I had no idea a carousel could wreck a guy that bad. Down to his hair.


Dell210bc.RidePink

Best things about this back cover:
  • Mapback!
  • Visually, this not that interesting. Just a cluster of dots on a lined white back ground. Like someone used it for target practice. Nice cluster.
  • I love the expressive lines coming off the Cross of the Martyrs. Nice comic booky touch.
  • But what is that thing projecting out from beneath it? Sconces Gone Wild!

Page 123~
"I'd take a drink. This Sunday law is a hindrance. To a working man."
"... and that's the last thing I remember saying. Three days later I came to, draped over a carousel horse, my mouth tasting of cigarettes, vomit, and whore."

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Paperback 327: The Case of the Constant Suicides / John Dickson Carr (Dell 91)

Paperback 327: Dell 91 (1st ptg, 1945)

Title: The Case of the Constant Suicides
Author: John Dickson Carr
Cover artist: Gerald Gregg

Yours for: $9


Best things about this cover:
  • Gerald Gregg does great borderline-abstract covers. Bold shapes and colors. Simple, but I like it a lot.
  • That is some thick, thick, possibly polyethylene blood.
  • I'm trying to imagine what "constant suicides" could possibly mean. Are they literally occurring non-stop, around the clock? That's rough.

Best things about this back cover:
  • Mapback!
  • I want to live in Angus Campbell's room.
  • The only castle in all of Scotland made entirely of red Legos.
  • I'm not buying "Courtyard." Looks more like "Sheep Pen."

Page 123~

"No, my boy. The real meat of the thing is here." Dr. Fell made the pages riffle like a pack of cards. "In the body of the diary. In the account of this activities for the past year."

He frowned at the book and slipped it into his pocket. His expression of gargantuan distress had grown along with his fever of certainty.

"Hang it all!" he said, and smote his hand on his knee. "The thing is inescapable! Elspat steals the diary. She reads it. Being no fool, she guesses—"

"Smote!" I didn't know anyone but God ever did that. Cool.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter]

Friday, January 8, 2010

57 Books from the University Book Sale: Book 37

Title: Wolf in Man's Clothing (Dell 136 — 1st ptg, 1947)
Author: Mignon G. Eberhart
Cover artist: [Gerald Gregg]

Yours for: $20


  • So ... it's about a nurse with giant bloody hands who sticks needles in her head. Interesting.
  • Where the wolf?
  • Love love love the little Dell mystery eye-in-the-keyhole logo.
  • This book's got a hypo cover, with all its original permagloss, *and* it's a mapback? Book sale jackpot!
  • "You know what my favorite part of the book was? ... Fork."
  • "Balifold" must be either a castle that has sunk into the earth or ... a minaret construction plant.

Page 123~

I put my finger on it and he looked at it, his face as inexpressive as a Red Indian's.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter]