Thursday, June 28, 2012

Paperback 544: Nightfall / David Goodis (Lion Books 131)

Paperback 544: Lion Books 131 (1st thus, 1956)

Title: Nightfall
Author: David Goodis
Cover artist: Uncredited

Yours for: $50

Best things about this cover:
  • There are really too many things going on on this cover for it to make any kind of visual sense. It's like I"m watching a stage play about some woman who was hurt in a tragic accident and is now, through the love of one strong man, learning to walk ... but then the soul of the dead body represented by the chalk outline on the ground is so disgusted by the false pathos of the scene that he rises up in horror and flees ... and immediately has a heart attack. Nightfall!
  • David Goodis was good at writing. His books are pretty collectible, and this one, despite some bumps and bruises, is clearly unread. Gorgeous. One of my earliest two-figure (i.e. it cost me more than $10) purchases, and probably the first that made me realize "holy shit, you are really collecting these things now."
  • I do love the unusual, if creepy, color of this cover, and the bright, nutso font on the title.
  • Movie tie-in! Collectible subgenre! Hey, is the ghost of the corpse ... is that ... fear hand?! Behind the "A" and the "L"!? Judges say .... ding ding ding!


Best things about this back cover:
  • Bancroft! So early ...
  • Aldo Ray sounds like a prog rock band.
  • "Taut" ... "swift" ... "searing" ... nope, sorry, no "frank." 

Page 123~

The type he was dealing with was the most dangerous and clever of them all. On the surface a soft-voiced innocence, an unembroidered sincerity. Beneath the surface a chess player who could do amazing things without board and chessman.

"What are you doing?" "Playing chess in my mind." "Amazing."


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NomadUK said...

So ... not Isaac Asimov, then,

Anonymous said...

Long live the works of David Goodis.

NomadUK said...

Someone else has a nice collection, too, set to music.

Michael5000 said...

The "My Name is Jim Vanning" series of children's primers were unpopular with many parents, and most schools returned to the less controversial "Dick and Jane" books within a few years.

Doug Brunell said...

Damn! I saw this at a yard sale not too long ago and passed it up!