Sunday, March 3, 2013

Paperback 616: Cop / Jack Karney (Pocket Books 898)

Paperback 616: Pocket Books 898 (1st ptg, 1952)

Title: Cop
Author: Jack Karney
Cover artist: Stanley Zuckerberg

Yours for: $10


Best things about this cover:
  • I love this cover so much it hurts. Where to begin? 
  • The framing! They're apart, but together, but apart, but ... and such a contrast in tone. Male/female. Calm/kinetic. White/pink. Dressed/undressed. Professional/domestic. On and on. And on. And their expressions! Revealing but enigmatic. Is he here to arrest her? Sleep with her? Both? And how does she feel about that? Excited? Headachey? Feels like there's a thousand pages of subtext in this one shot.
  • The pink! Such a bold color choice, and the last color you'd expect to have "COP" written over the top of it. 
  • The title! Bold, simple, and apparently, by its slight angle, printed on the surface of the door ...
  • The detail! The careful positioning of his hand, the texture of the metal fixtures on the door, the stockings, the cigarette. A thousand points of awesome.
  • Total lack of blurb / cover copy. Exactly the right choice for this cover. I'll supply my own overheated blurb, thanks.


Best things about this back cover:
  • "Get wise!" I love how this book talks. Stop making me love you so much, "Cop"!
  • OMG, the back cover is talking not to me, but to Joe! And I'm just eavesdropping, I guess.
  • The problem of Joe's "conscience" says a lot about that front cover—shake her down? Take her to bed? Walk away? Does it matter? 

Page 123~
For the next five minutes the cab driver told Joe what he thought of cops in general, citing cases to prove his point that the hackie and the policeman were natural enemies. When he finished, he said, 
"I can smell a cop a mile off. Fact, I just look at a guy and can tell how he makes a buck. You look like a lawyer."
Swing and a miss, hackie!


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DemetriosX said...

Along with the ambiguity of their expressions, it's also not entirely clear if Joe is coming or going. The way his hand is positioned, he could easily have been on his way out the door and turned around to say something.

Also very awesome: the little bit of thigh above the top of her stocking.

NomadUK said...

Frankly, it looks to me as though he could be one of the Invaders.

NomadUK said...

Plus that robe has a button and a belt? Man, she's making him work for it ...

(But, yes, that stocking is awesome.)

John W said...

Great cover. Sadly, I can confirm that the book itself isn't.

CYNTHIA said...

Rex/Michael, I can't tell you how it brightens my day to read this blog. Just laughing uncontrollably. As a serious cruciverbalist I can't decide which of your blogs I like better.