Saturday, September 18, 2010

Paperback 352: Me An' You / Jay Thomas Caldwell (Lion 220)

Paperback 352: Lion 220 (PBO, 1954)

Title: Me An' You
Author: Jay Thomas Caldwell
Cover artist: Uncredited

Yours for: $30


Best things about this front cover:

  • "Grrr, Hulk hate ordinary kitchen chair. Prefer mid-century modern aesthetic. Grrrrrr... Hulk crush chair!"
  • They promise a "two-fisted Negro," but I can see just the one fist. Rip-off.
  • I think the white t-shirt was a late decision. Pretty sure he was originally depicted shirtless, but then censors were like "Dude, we're already pushing the interracial envelope on this one—put some clothes on the guy." Anyway, late-add would explain somewhat the remarkable definition visible even through the shirt.
  • I love her bored expression: "What's shaking my chair? Oh, it's you ... I don't suppose you're a big shot yet?"
  • Lots of telling details in this one—the liquor, the news headline, the pile of dirty dishes, and of course, the pervading aura of grime.
  • I think I remember Robert Polito saying (in his Thompson bio) that Jay Thomas Caldwell was a black writer who died young, possibly in a bank hold-up. But I could be misremembering my details.


Best things about this back cover:

  • Why in the world would you even get *on* "the long ladder of bitterness and bleak despair?" I imagine any direction on that thing is a bad one.
  • I am a little worried about Irma.

Page 123~ (four pages from end of book)

"People I used to know in the fight game stop me on the street an' say, 'Tommy, I hear you're a preacher now.' Yes, I tell them. I'm workin' for the Lord now."


"Praise the LOOOrd!"

Well, I did not see that coming.


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Anonymous said...

C'mon, surely I'm not the only one who saw Me an' You and automatically added

And a dog named Boo.

C'mon, admit it!

Anonymous said...

Caught me!

And beat me to posting it.

al boraq said...

"I love her bored expression".

I think the subtext's supposed to be: don't be gettin' anxious now, all you self-doubtin', self-loathin' honkies: she doesn't actually care for him - she's just using him for his huge black cock.

Pax said...

The author was a boxer in 'real life' and wrote the book after he retired. He died rather young after slipping in the tub.

Anonymous said...

I am looking for a copy of this book
Please advise if you have a copy for sale or trade..