Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Paperback 92: The Bowstring Murders / Carter Dickson (Berkley G-214)

Paperback 92: Berkley G-214 (1st ptg, 1959)

Title: The Bowstring Murders
Author: Carter Dickson
Cover artist: Robert Maguire

Yours for: $7

"Oh, crossbow, I'm sorry. I love you but ... it can never work out between us..."

Best things about this cover:

  • Man is it red.
  • Her hair is the color of pink lemonade.
  • "Do you like my outfit? I call it 'The Reverse Bumblebee!'" (My other bumblebee joke involved her being a referee at a bumblebee football game)
  • Her left ankle is absurdly, grotesquely thick.
  • Are those ... pants? Tights? Jodhpurs?
  • As with all Robert Maguire women, this one has exquisite, detailed, realistic, emotionally evocative facial features. Why she's writhing around in Mao's basement dressed like a bee, I'll never know.
  • Carter Dickson is a terrible name, in that Dickson Carter really makes far more sense. Much more believable as a name, I think.

Best things about this back cover:

  • Gauntlets cannot be efficient handwear for strangling.
  • "... the great criminologist John Gaunt" - laziest naming ever. John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster, was a prominent nobleman in 14th-century England - the uncle of Richard II.
  • This book description reeks of Englishness. It's clear that the Maguire cover is a total fake-out; I'm quite sure this book contains no mod, crossbow-loving bumble-ladies. Quite sure.

PAGE 123~

"Lady Rayle has been murdered," said John Gaunt, rising from the breakfast table.



Anonymous said...

Re: Page 123: Lady Rayle too!!!??? Spoiler alert!

Anonymous said...

CarterDickson was a clear psuedonym used by John Dickson Carr to separate his Henry Merrivale books from his Gideon Carr books. Readers knew immediately that they were the same authors but it kept publishers happy.

Michael5000 said...

"The Strangler Wore Gauntlets"?!?

Man, you just couldn't make this stuff up. This is one of the best Pop Sensations yet.

Anonymous said...

Clearly the best thing about the front cover: that crossbow is pointing directly at her crotch.