Sunday, October 30, 2011

Paperback 471: Model for Murder / Stephen Marlowe (Graphic 94)

Paperback 471: Graphic 94 (PBO, 1955)

Title: Model for Murder
Author: Stephen Marlowe
Cover artist: Walter Popp

Yours for: $16


Best things about this cover:
  • I have no idea what these people are up to, but that cigarette and that cigar are getting it on.
  • Finally, a taut thriller about the exciting, dangerous world of copyediting.
  • Steve is puzzled to find that his meticulously researched paper, "Broads: Stacked vs. Unstacked," merits only a B-. "I don't think I understand this whole 'Women's Studies' thing, Bernie."


Best things about this back cover:
  • Kinsey!
  • Out-Kinseyed Kinsey! "Screw this survey stuff, let's just install hidden cameras."
  • Lady wrestlers! Be still my heart.
  • Talk about ... Pop Grujdzak. Talk about ... Pop Grujdzak.
  • If I had to invent a stupid-sounding last name, and had several days to do it, I still couldn't beat Wompler.

Page 123~

The clothing was Ken's naturally, and as I dressed and tested the stiffness in my left arm, I began to wonder. The arm couldn't have punched its way through a wet Kleenex tissue.

So ... he dresses up like Barbie's boyfriend and he has a lot of experience testing the tensile strength of wet Kleenex. He sounds dreamy.


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Friday, October 28, 2011

Paperback 470: The Swingers / Sherri St. John (as told to Rex Nevins) (Saber SA-57)

Paperback 470: Saber Books SA-57 (PBO, 1967)

Title: The Swingers
Author: Sherri St. John, as told to Rex Nevins
Cover artist: Uncredited

Yours for: $20


Best things about this cover:
  • What is he doing to her? I'd say he's trying to take her bra off, but his hands are way too high. Also, she's not wearing one.
  • Their awkward teenage fumbling amused hot young drunk Elizabeth Taylor.
  • The world needs more orange bras.
  • I thought swingers were swappers by definition. "The Swingers were faithful to their spouses"—there's your surprise headline.
  • This is what happens when you paint your living room Satanic Red.
  • I think I own that shirt.
  • Rex Nevins really gets the ladies to open up


Best things about this back cover:
  • I want to get past the first sentence, but I can't. Why is there a shower in the cockpit?
  • Why Are There Air Mattresses In The Cockpit? The "Cockpit" Of What?
  • "The way we were lined up was this way, left to right looking toward the bow..."; sorry, my arousal faded during the time it took me to draw a fucking diagram.

Page 123~
I kind of played with Pete's old slide rule in my hands.

Hilariously, this sentence is purely literal.


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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Paperback 469: Sally / Alan Marshall (Donald Westlake pseud.) (Midwood 62)

Paperback 469: Midwood 62 (PBO, 1959)

Title: Sally
Author: Alan Marshall (Donald Westlake)
Cover artist: Paul Rader

Yours for: $75


Best things about this cover:
  • If I looked like Sally, that's probably what I'd do all day long, too.
  • Sally spent nearly every waking moment seasoning her bullfighting skills...
  • She was Willing to Try Anything Once, but in the case of letting her five-year-old niece paint the bathroom, just once.
  • I love the way she is drawn rather realistically while the bathroom fixtures are barely sketched. Makes it seem like she's going to go through the looking glass and have great adventures. Great, naked, lesbian adventures.


Best things about this back cover:
  • "Wow," thought Marie. "That was shockingly easy."
  • "It's the cleanest thing in the world. Here, put on this latex suit covered in Purell..."

Page 123~
She remembered the strange things Marie had said, and all at once she wanted to talk about it, she wanted to know what had made Marie say such things, she wanted to talk it into understanding, and from there to oblivion.
"From There To Oblivion," of course, the poorly reviewed sequel to "From Here To Eternity."


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Friday, October 21, 2011

Paperback 468: Anybody's Girl / March Hastings (Midwood 33-870)

Paperback 468: Midwood 33-870 (2nd ptg, 1967) 

Title: Anybody's Girl 
Author: March Hastings
Cover artist: Paul Rader

Yours for: $30


Best things about this cover: 
  • "Do these pajama bottoms make my boobs look big? Be honest." 
  •  Margo found that no one could resist her charms once she lured them into her Teal Chamber. 
  • And the Strategic Sheet Placement Award goes to ... Paul Rader for his "Rear End of a Reclining Brunette"! 


Best things about this back cover: 
  • Cliff, Ha ha. Good luck explaining the Skid Row bums to Cliff. 
  • "And there were others." Yeah, that's implied, idiot. God, nothing is unhotter than terrible writing. 
  • "The User and the Used" — once again, publishers miss a golden book-naming opportunity. 

Page 123~ 
Addie wanted to voice her disappointment but she held it in, moving silently beside Margo, trusting Margo to lead her to the sights and the activities forbidden to normal human beings.

So ... Addie wanted Margo to take her to a Renaissance Faire?


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Paperback 467: Women's Barracks / Tereska Torres (Gold Medal 132)

Paperback 467: Gold Medal 132 (PBO, 1950)

Title: Women's Barracks
Author: Tereska Torres
Cover artist: Barye Phillips

Yours for: $20


Best things about this cover:
  • Ah, the standard military-issue pink bra. Classic.
  • Hell yeah "FRANK!"
  • This book is pretty famous. Per wikipedia: "The first paperback to address a lesbian relationship was published as early as 1950 with Women's Barracks by Tereska Torres, published by Gold Medal Books. The story was fictionalized account of Torres' experiences in the Free French Forces in London during World War II. Women's Barracks sold 4 million copies and was selected in 1952 to become an example of how paperback books were promoting moral degeneracy, by the House Select Committee on Current Pornographic Materials."
  • I'm kind of in love with the blonde in the dead center background. She looks tough as hell. Doesn't even bother taking the cigarette out of her mouth to put her clothes on. No time for googly eyes in the locker room — those Krauts aren't going to kill themselves, ladies!
  • I also love the lady in uniform, sizing up her prey: "I'm gonna eat you like an after-dinner mint, sweetheart."


Best things about this back cover:
  • "Where are the *normal* emotional outlets? All I see are these weird European jobs. Anybody got a converter?"
  • "Revealment" is a real word, but it still hurts.

Page 123~

Mickey tried to give the men the eye, as though to reassure them that she was a real woman; but Petit had installed herself directly in front of us, at a little table, so there could be no side flirtation.

"Eyes front, bitches!"


[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Friday, October 14, 2011

Paperback 466: Spring Fire / Vin Packer (Gold Medal 222)

Paperback 466: Gold Medal 222 (PBO, 1952)

Title: Spring Fire
Author: Vin Packer (aka Marijane Meaker)
Cover artist: Barye Phillips

Yours for: [not for sale]

Best things about this cover:
  • I wish the cover depicted whatever that blonde is looking at, because it must be Amazing (unlike this cover).
  • "Frank(ly)!"
  • Brunette: "Why do you always leave your nylons on the floor?" Blonde: "Whoa ... look at that pigeon on the windowsill. He looks just like James Mason ..."
  • I like how this book treads Very Very Lightly on the whole lesbian issue. Art director: "Two women ... in a room together ... sitting on what is probably a bed ... that's far enough, boys. Make their negligees look like party dresses, have them look away from each other, and leave the door ajar so we can always say they're just two girls waiting for their dates to arrive. Their big, male dates."
  • That is one imposing head of blond hair. It appears to be giving off solar flares.


Best things about this back cover:
  • "A girl called Mitch"—how is that not the title?!
  • "... a theme too important to keep from the light ... but not important enough to be mentioned directly on this cover." 
  • "Vin Packer" is another alias of Marijane Meaker. You may remember her from such classics as "Take a Lesbian to Lunch" (which she wrote as "Ann Aldrich"). "Vin Packer" is probably my favorite paperback author name. If Rex Parker had an alias, it would be Vin Packer.
  • The very first thing my eyes lit on when I opened the book: "Dripping and curious, Mitch hovered in a wide towel as she took the call in the booth outside the bathroom." This made me change my mind about what the book's title should be...

I'm replacing Page 123 today with Page 136. Too good to pass up:
The ticking of the tin clock on the dresser sounded frantic and Mitch made the ticks come in three beats in her mind—Les-bi-an, Les-bi-an, tick-tick-tick.
Yet another great potential title that was passed up. And now clocks will never sound the same again.

Bonus: Page 126~
It was different when I could say it wasn't this way, that I was bisexual and all that rot. Bisexual—that's sort of like succotash, isn't it? Only this succotash hasn't got any corn in it. It's straight beans!
Without question, the single greatest metaphor in literary history.


[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Paperback 465: The Loving and the Daring / Francoise Mallet-Joris (Popular Library EB84)

Paperback 465: Popular Library-Eagle Books EB84 (1st thus, 1957)

Title: The Loving and the Daring
Author: Francoise Mallet-Joris
Cover artist: Uncredited

Yours for: $20


Best things about this cover:
  • This is how older lesbians prey on young girls—their acute sense of hearing.'
    This was a groundbreaking novel. No one had yet dared to tell the story of lesbian acrobats.
  • "This stairway doesn't seem to go anywhere. Let's just go back to Starbucks." Sorry, that was a line from "The Loving and the Undaring."


Best things about this back cover:
  • You can tell which is the 15-year-old girl because she hasn't learned how to sit ladylike and still cries when she skins her knee. You can tell the older, predatory lesbian by her icy disdain and slacks.
  • It's like the reviewer is teasing me by nearly saying "frank" a million times but never actually saying "frank." Asshole. Wait ... "frankly" ... Uh, OK. That'll do.
  • Taut and sensitive and on the brink of explosive release! Wait, I think my brain involuntarily rewrote copy there ...

Page 123~
Two women near the edge of the dance floor were squabbling over a gay little brunette that each wanted to tear from the arms of her indignant lady partner. It became a fight, with hair pulled and slaps exchanged.
Clearly this book should've been titled "Indignant Lady Partner" — "I demand satisfaction! Pistols at dawn, bitch!"


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Sunday, October 9, 2011

Paperback 464: Campus Kittens / Joan Ellis (Midwood 32-417)

Paperback 464: Midwood 32-417 (PBO, 1964) (CANADA)

Title: Campus Kittens
Author: Joan Ellis
Cover artist: Paul Rader

Yours for: [SOLD! 10/10/11]


Best things about this cover:
  • The scintillating story of a buxom young redhead, her gravity-defying towel (or her extremely adhesive nipples), and her collection of remarkably life-like store mannequins.
  • Seriously, there's no way that blonde is a living breathing human being.
  • Shouldn't it be an "unblushing exposé"?—if it's blushing, then it's gonna be all coy and its sex scenes are going to be all vague and elliptical and annoying. "Blushing" is not "frank," is what I'm saying.
  • "Our once-respectable collegiate sorority houses," ha ha. "In my day, we spent our days performing community service and singing songs that expressed pride in our alma mater. Nowadays, it's all cunnilingus this and cunnilingus that!"


Best things about this back cover:
  • Spiteful sexual sprees are the best kind!
  • What is the "worst possible moment" to be caught in a motel with a married man? You'd think any moment would be pretty bad.
  • "Elementary education at the hands of her roommate" made me laugh. Yes, hands are elementary. Later, you might move on to tongue. Only the truly talented graduate to vagina. Hence Andrea's need for personal tutoring.

Page 123~
"Same place, you sexy little wench," he crooned [1]. "If you're still willing to go out with a decrepit old character like me." [2]

"Oh stop it," she laughed. Owen was one of the handsomest men she had ever encountered, and no older than a lot of movie stars [3]. "You'll make me bring along a pair of crutches if you keep up that talk." [4]
  • [1] If you are trying to get laid, I suggest that you not croon anything, let alone that particular line.
  • [2] This guy is like a bottomless pit of bad come-on lines.
  • [3] This is an odd benchmark: "Why, you're no older than Edward G. Robinson or Joseph Cotten." "I'm only 41." "Shhh, I'm pretending our relationship is normal ..."
  • [4] Why, so you can reenact scenes from "Double Indemnity?" I think you mean "wheelchair." He said "decrepit" and "old," not "suffering from a sprained ankle."

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Saturday, October 8, 2011

Paperback 463: Mr. Madam: Confessions of a Male Madam / Kenneth Marlowe (Paperback Library 55-857)

Paperback 463: Paperback Library 55-857 (1st ptg, 1965)

Title: Mr. Madam: Confessions of a Male Madam
Author: Kenneth Marlowe
Cover artist: Uncredited

Yours for: $9

Best things about this cover:
  • Oh good, an Adult Autobiography. I always hate it when children try to write autobiography. Grow up first, you self-involved whiners!
  • How can a book with this subject matter and this title have a cover this terrible. I mean, consider some other covers (which I just found, while trolling the internet):

[Hairdresser of the stars!? Why is this info not on my paperback!?]
  • Kenneth Marlowe was also a female impersonator. More pics:

And now the back cover:


Best things about this back cover:
  • Ugh. A chalkboard drawing? Is this supposed to be a "twilight man?"
  • Not even the word "frank" to appease me. I hate this book (cover). [I just opened the book and the very first phrase on the very first page is "Uncompromisingly frank," so I feel a little better]

Page 123~

"You all try to help 'Frenchy' get dates, girls. Oh, be sure to remember to call him 'Frenchy.' If you get a date with a John, tell him that for five bucks extra you can have Frenchy sent in. Tell the trick, 'Let Frenchy come in and work on me. It makes me go wild!' That'll work the John up. Or, for $10 he'll work both you and the John. Well, I don't have to tell most of you how to manage it. Use your imaginations. Frenchy will, of course, be working all the exhibitions."

To its credit, this book does get pretty dang 'frank' (esp. by 1965 standards). Why it's not called "FRENCHY!"—with accompanying super-campy picture—I just don't understand.


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Sunday, October 2, 2011

Paperback 462: In Search of Sin / Gil McDonald (Saber Tropic 915)

Paperback 462: Saber Tropic 915 (PBO, 1965)

Title: In Search of Sin
Author: Gil McDonald
Cover artist: Uncredited

Yours for: $20


Best things about this cover:
  • "Mission ... accomplished."
  • "Don't mind me kids. I'm good. Carry on."
  • "Did somebody order a debonair voyeur?"
  • Whenever Steve went out spying on his wife, he always brought along HAL-9000 for backup.


Best things about this back cover:
  • Quite possibly the best back cover opening line I've ever read.
  • As good as the first line is, the second line is equally bad. Passive voice, kids ... it's a killer.
  • If you want to kill your boner, just read this back cover. Nothing unsexier than clunky, amateurish writing about sex.

Page 123~
"I take it you're off on some half-baked idea of your own about how to catch these people," he continued, as his cigar again jabbed the air savagely.
Fly paper and swatters were fine for some people, but for Captain Gregory, nothing was so satisfying as taking down a pesky fly with a lit cigar—foolish appearance and inefficiency be damned!


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