Friday, January 13, 2012

The P. Morrison Donations #11: TCOT Demure Defendant / Erle Stanley Gardner (Cardinal C-323)

The P. Morrison Donations #11

Cardinal C-323 (2nd ptg, 1959)

Title: The Case of the Demure Defendant
Author: Erle Stanley Gardner
Cover artist: Charles Peitz


Best things about this cover:
  • Once again, the breasts act as if the dress weren't even there.
  • How much vaseline is on this lens? Everything looks like it's been coated in margarine.
  • "Sorry, your honor, I didn't hear you. I was just playing with these marionettes here, and, well ... yes, OK, I'll stop."
    That is one George Washington turkey leg tornado of blond hair.
  • This title reminds me that I get "demur" and "demure" confused, which may be why I never use either.


Best things about this back cover:
  • Fewer things are sexier than residuary legatees.
  • Mosher Higley, who earned his name for his exuberance at '90s punk concerts.
  • Erle Stanley Garnder has the signature of an insane person.

Page 123~

"The prosecution expects to prove that the defendant deliberately became a poisoner, a murderess, a blackmailer and became ensnared in the toils of her own iniquity."

Somehow "ensnared in the toils of her own iniquity" is a mess, metaphorically, but it's still awfully fun to say.


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Tulse said...

It's a wonderfully evocative phrase, but I'm not sure that "ensnared in the toils of her own iniquity" even makes sense here. She deliberately did bad stuff, so "ensnared" seems like the wrong word, as it suggests it was accidental. And "ensnared in the toils" sounds like she got wrapped up in the actions, rather than their outcomes -- she got so excited about poisoning, murdering, and blackmailing that she couldn't stop, and went about poisoning, murdering, and blackmailing random people. I would think "ensnared in the spoils of her own iniquity" would make more sense -- the results of her felonious actions caught her.

But far be it from me to edit Erle Stanley Gardner (and if I did, a higher priority would be to get him to spell his first name correctly).

Anonymous said...

In case anyone is wondering, let me spare you the 15 seconds of humiliation and chirpractic pain I just caused myself: Yes, it is physically possible to sit in that position and have your hands fall to the side as she is pictured doing. You can't do it with a demure smile on your fact, but you can do it.

Xerxes Iguana said...

Just how big is that courtroom? Warehouse sized? Also, the judge appears to be either a nun or one of the psychic-powered mutants from Beneath the Planet of the Apes.

Anonymous said...

I bet she gets acquitted of all toils. *And* iniquities.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps it should be "ensnared by the coils of her own iniquities"