Thursday, August 20, 2009

Paperback 279: The Angry Mountain / Hammond Innes (Bantam 1058)

Paperback 279: Bantam 1058 (1st ptg, 1952)

Title: The Angry Mountain
Author: Hammond Innes
Cover artist: Mitchell Hooks

Yours for: $13

Best things about this cover:
  • He put his ear to the door. "Shhh. Be quiet, naked Sonia Braga. I think hear the mountain ... and it sounds angry."
  • Sonia Braga: The Crappy Casting Couch Years
  • Does anyone even know who Sonia Braga is any more? "Kiss of the Spider Woman?" Anyone?
  • "A smashing story..." As in, "We smashed one of the louvered blind panels out of the window to enhance your lava-viewing pleasure."
  • There are so many folds in that sheet. It's mesmerizing if you look at it for too long...

Best things about this back cover:
  • I love the quaint explanation of why this paperback book exists. "See, we published a book in hardback, and it did really well, so we decided hey, we can probably sell enough in softcover to realize a robust profit, even with the smaller margins." The fifties were so earnest and friendly.
  • I don't love the repro of the original cover. Book should be called "The Angry Hand."
  • "Zina murmured sleepily and sat up, showing me her nakedness." Pardon me while I throw up in my mouth a little. I think you mean "I could see her boobs. Oh man, boobs. Awesome."
  • Love love love the Orwellian announcement of the forthcoming Huxley novel. "Brave New World is coming! You will submit to its laws! Resistance is Futile!"

Page 123~

"Do you think I don't know what the man is? That last night in Milan—I lay in bed in the dark and felt his hands on my leg. I knew those hands. I'd known them [sic] if a thousand hands were touching my leg."

"A thousand!?" Seriously, Sonia Braga had to do some terrible shit to get her career underway.


[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter]

P.S. I need your help. Some entity calling itself "Book Blogger Appreciation Week" (BBAW) has notified me that my blog, this blog, has been nominated for one of its annual awards in the category of ... BEST WRITING. Really? Of all the categories (including Funniest Blog, hello) this is the one I'm nominated for? The Big One? Well, OK. Thank you. I'm flattered, even if my nomination is really just the voice of one crank crying in the wilderness (or my mom). I can tell you there is no way I have a chance of even being shortlisted. First, those book blogger ladies are mobbed up tight. They read and write like crazy and all seem to know each other (if the Twitter back-and-forths I see from time to time are any indication). Second, they actually read the books they talk about, whereas yours truly hasn't read a book in years; I can barely get through my Batman comics week to week. Third, my audience, while brilliant and loyal, is still relatively small. But in the interest of ... whaddya call it ... gratitude? Yeah, gratitude, as well as bloggerly community, I'm going to play ball. Here's what I have to do (and how you can help). The following is verbatim from the notification email:

In order to help our panels fairly evaluate your blog, we ask that you submit permalinks (direct links to individual blog posts) for 5 blog posts per category that you consider to be the best representation of your blog. [...] Of the 5 posts submitted please include a minimum of one book review/recommendation/or spotlight post.

So, please help me, if you would, by suggesting (in comments, or by email) which write-ups you think I should submit. I have no perspective. I think even my ugliest children are awesome.

Thank you.



the.effing.librarian said...

if that woman is Sonia Braga, that man is definitely Ray Milland...

Rex Parker said...

YES. And this is a still from a 1980 television movie adaptation. It all makes sense now.


Sandy said...

I nominate this particular entry. Including the part about the nomination. How very meta...

Rachel Helps said...

Um. I'm still laughing about the pro-vocative joke in the Pirate Wench entry (

"Explosive violence." heh.

Dan said...

Dang! I thought that award was for me!

Elaine said...

No, Ray Milland is way too old for Sonja Braga (whom I recall swaggering around in a loathsome movie rendition of _Milagro Beanfield War_, a terrific book that deserved better.) And the last time I saw Ray, he had, like, WIRES into his brain and really bloodshot eyes. You know?

The reason these people are so PINK must be that they are about to spontaneously combust. Have you been near a volcano? Really, really HOT, even a mile away. Seriously, you can't hang around them Angry Mountains! And a satin sheet is no protection AT ALL! (Rex, satin drapes well.....)

Well, I suggest having your wife reread all of the Pop Sensation write-ups, rate them on the Laugh-o-meter, and list the top five. Unless you think she is in cahoots with your mother and cooked the whole thing up. good luck!

Thom said...

I don't really think that it's a top five entry but I'll tell you that this one:

made me buy the book. It's the only one that's done that... (I'm in Europe so postage would have been exensive or I'd have bought your copy).

Elaine said...

The links do not work. Please, please. don't leave me like this! (does this sound properly pulpy??)
I need some kind of link to find the monster from earth-salmongutter thing!

Elaine said...

Even though this is the week that school starts again in much of the USA, I do not understand the dearth of responses here.

C'mon, folks!

Oh, and Nyah, nyah, I am retired and do not have to do IEP's, rolls, playground duty, lunchroom patrol, or take your class because you were called to pick up your sick child. (I would add -Smirk- but I am too nice for that. Plus, I've been there. sigh.)

Lisa in Oz said...

This one.

Hands down.

I mean, hello - ED WOOD! Plus, the line about the barn is now one of my single favorite things to say to people. Luckily, I don't mind being looked at like I'm a lunatic.

Eunice said...

I gotta agree with Lisa, the Ed Wood one is probably my favorite. That's the one I link to specifically when I tell people about Pop Sensation.

Stars in My Crown was a good one. The front cover comments always got me.

That None Should Die (which I remember the title of because of the That Nun Sould Die comment someone made)

Or one of your multi-titled posts. Like... *search* "Why Books are Like Crack Dens To ME, Part 2."

Eunice said...

She is not depicted as "depraved." She's covering herself up and looks bewildered/afraid. "Holy crap I'm in a dingy motel IN a lava flow!

He also looks bewildered yet fascinted. "Oh, ah, sorry! I must be in the wrong room, just let me - Oh the door's stuck! I'll just- Give me a sec- Say! What do you use on your hair, it's looks so full, and that shine!"

Back Cover: "BUT I HAD TO DO IT!"

The quote doesn't make much sense. "Do you think I don't know what that man is?" tells me maybe he's a criminal or a jerk or something. But the hands thing indicates she knows WHO that man is. And then I think 'what is it about his hand?' Hypertrichosis maybe?

Anonymous said...

Every time I see this cover, my first impression is that he is spanking her.

Does anyone else see this, or shopuld I seek help?

Raven's Angel said...

#200 has my vote! I can't read that post without snorting out loud every time!!!

Rex Parker said...


Well I see it *now*. Thanks.

I submitted five links. WIth the exception of the Suburbia Confidential, it all felt pretty arbitrary, frankly. Thanks for all the suggestions.


Wayne Rhodes said...

REX!!! Didn't know how to contact you any other way. AM a daily follower of the NYTimes blog, but now Google tells me that "This site may harm your computer.". SO it has somehow been infected! Are you aware of this? You can go to Google and see how to fix it. Please! I need my daily dose of Rex, but don't want to hose my PC to get it. thanks.

Elaine said...

In case you check here again-- I made my husband come in and read the "Suburbia Confidential" write-up. He heard me laughing myself silly... Oh, my. Hope you win!

cwogle said...

"Don't worry, Sonia. Now that I've closed this wooden door, the lava can never reach us. Unless there's a window in this ... oh, crap."