Friday, February 28, 2014

Paperback 747: The Strange Brigade / John Jennings (Cardinal C-137)

Paperback 747: Cardinal C-137 (1st ptg, 1954)

Title: The Strange Brigade
Author: John Jennings
Cover artist: Rudy Nappi

Yours for: $8


Best things about this cover:
  • If 'love' wasn't just a word, what else was it??! A deed? Are you talking about sex? You are, aren't you. 
  • Speaking of sex, this book is at least in part about trappers, i.e. beaver.
  • "Hey … hey baby … hey … I like your ears …" Ugh, I can practically feel his grog breath on my shoulder.
  • Steve did not take well to losing the "Who Wore It Best?" competition to Lionel. Even the awkward consolations of a concerned squaw could not alleviate Steve's fist-clenching fury.


Best things about this back cover:
  • Mmm, I love bois brûlés. My favorite dessert. Always puts me in the mood for bone-cracking / love-making.
  • I do love a woman who acts "quite otherwise." 
  • "Sinister half-breed"—I would think that in vintage paperback-speak, that would be redundant.

Page 123~
Here were abundant varieties of smaller game: hares and rabbits, chattering squirrels, the white partridge, and spruce grouse, foxes, beaver, martins, musquash, otter and a dozen others. 
This is a really weird list, not so much for what's on it, but for how it's set up. Why do the squirrels get a behavioral detail? Why is there a "the" with the white partridge? Why do we start a new list with a new "and" just before spruce grouse? Why do you list so many and then say "a dozen others?" Why not keep going? You're half way there, for god's sake. Also, "a dozen"? That's a pretty specific number. Are you sure it wasn't a baker's dozen? 10? This is what happens when you think too much about a random filler sentence in a middling historical novel from 60 years ago.

[Alternative comment: "Musquash Susie / Musquash Sam / Do the jitterbug out in Musquash Land …"]


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Tulse said...

Why are Indian maidens acting "otherwise" a harsh reality? I would think they would go a long way towards making up for the trappers' war, Boisbrûlés, and sinister half-breeds. (Although I would think that the term "maiden" may be inappropriately applied.)

"Why is there a "the" with the white partridge?"

Presumably to rule out Danny, who was quite ruddy.

DemetriosX said...

With a title like The Strange Brigade, I fully expected to encounter the word "frank" somewhere in the cover copy.

I think that's Russ Tamblyn sniffing that woman's ear.

Rex Parker said...

I *know*. Me too. Sadly, "lusty" is the new "frank." I'm not happy about it.


PS ruddy Danny made me laff

Karl said...

Russ-Tamblyn-type to blue-dress-lady: "Say, you're right! I CAN see right through to your other ear!

John "Ol' Chumbucket" Baur said...

On the back cover, bottom line, I'm amused at the notion of someone fighting with his lips. Does he mean talking? Kissing? Or hitting someone over the head with his collagen-enhanced labials?

Graham Powell said...

I like that the cover assures you that this is THE COMPLETE BOOK. Might as well say, "Contains all the naughty bits!"