Sunday, September 14, 2008

Paperback 138: One-Way Ticket / Bert and Dolores Hitchens (Perma Books M-3100)

Paperback 138: Perma Book M-3100 (1st ptg, 1957)
Title: One-Way Ticket
Author: Bert and Dolores Hitchens
Cover artist: James Meese

Yours for: $7

Best things about this cover:
  • "Railroad detective" - my favorite kind!
  • The swirling green vortex of nausea and despair
  • The distractingly child-like drawing of the upper half of a candle
  • Cool stenciled font on the title
  • That furniture - the proportions seem off and there are legs that appear to come from / go to nowhere, but in general, it's cool; spare, stark, mid-century modern in the very best way
  • If only she hadn't cut her hair by herself in the dark with a bread knife, she would easily be one of the hottest women in my collection - understated yet stunning black dress (that's a dress, right, not a negligee?), fierce black slip-ons, and a perversely casual way with money. What's not to love?

Best things about this back cover:

  • I love when back covers function like movie teasers: " ... MURDER! Featuring ... Boots! David Bryant! Some other B movie character actors whose names you don't know. And starring Jerry Mathers, as The Beav"
  • Which of these names doesn't belong? A: "David Bryant" - what a dud. That last name really ruins the whole vibe of the back cover. Everyone else gets one colorful name, and he gets the full name of some guy from middle management.
  • Wait, Rock dies? Uh, SPOILER ALERT!
  • This all makes sense except for Boots. I mean, I could write the plot of this book, but I would have no idea what to do with Boots. David Bryant already has two women. Is Boots a cat?

Page 123~

This was a joke on Boots by Boots. They were all expected to enjoy it. They chuckled in chorus and Vic felt a fool.

I'm guessing it was a familiar feeling.



Corey Wilde said...

I think her shoes are called either mules or slides, but not pumps. We wouldn't want to offend the fetishists out there.

Rex Parker said...

Weird. I actually looked it up before posting and the definitions were all super-vague and certainly would have included these shoes. I look at pics now, and see that "pumps" appear to have a back of some kind (strap or full heel cover). "mules" are too ugly-sounding to describe these. Never heard of "slides."

Can you define "pump?" (the shoe kind, I mean, duh)

I'll look for a new word now.


Rex Parker said...

Hmmm, just read somewhere that "if the back is open, they are considered mules." I can't bring myself to call them that. So I'll just go to something generic like "shoes."


Eunice said...

"Slip ons" or slip on heels work.

Rex Parker said...

Oh, Eunice! Leave it to someone with a delightfully old-fashioned name to come up with the sexy substitute word. Thank you!


Michael5000 said...

Concur! She's one good-looking, uh, cover illustration.

Also, "One was his wife!" is not a line with a real shock value wallop, I think.

Also, how many fonts ARE there on this cover? I didn't know they'd invented so many fonts by the 50s. And again with the pink!

JamiSings said...

Boots is obviously the lush on the cover. Probably called that cause she's got a shoe fetish.

Anonymous said...

Carolyn Jones! (pre-Morticia Addams)

Anonymous said...

I think the childishly drawn thingee in the background may be a decanter (source of the cheap, sour chianti she's swilling). Actually, I really like it, because it makes the chair legs look exactly like. . . lines on a piece of paper! Which they are!