Saturday, April 25, 2015

Paperback 873: Case of the Village Tramp / Jonathan Craig (Gold Medal 930)

Paperback 873: Gold Medal 930 (PBO, 1959)

Title: Case of the Village  Tramp
Author: Jonathan Craig
Cover artist: Uncredited

Estimated value: $15-20

Best things about this cover:

  • Detective Peter Selby prepares to add another tiara to his collection.
  • Detective Peter Selby could use a new mattress too, actually, now that he thinks of it.
  • Today this apartment goes for $1.8 million.
  • I want to go to the Village Bar. Right now. I think Detective Peter Selby does too.
  • One Red Shoe is paperback code for TRAMP (I guess).

Best things about this back cover:

  • The belt.
  • "Small *black* pumps? [Looks at cover] Aw, crap, someone get the art department on the phone!"
  • I feel like "this was the Big Sleep" needs a HUGE asterisk next to it.

Page 123~

"You're talking to the wall, lover," she said. "Good-by and good luck."

Another great line I insist you use today. I need to start a compilation. Maybe a line of t-shirts.


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Friday, April 24, 2015

Paperback 872: The Baited Blonde / Robinson MacLean (Dell 508)

Paperback 872: Dell 508 (1st ptg, 1951)

Title: The Baited Blonde
Author: Robinson MacLean
Cover artist: Robert Stanley

Estimated value: $10-15

Best things about this cover:

  • Mike had his own special way of taking a woman's pulse.
  • Mike was never very good at dancing.
  • Mike always had trouble getting the store mannequins into naturalistic poses.
  • You do *not* want to fuck with Mike's hookah. You just don't.

Best things about this back cover:

  • Middle East Mapback! With the Suez Canal inset! Hot.
  • "How 'bout instead of Iran … a sad strip club?" "Go for it!"
  • Screw you, Cyprus! No pink tint for you!

Page 123~

And after you open a can of salmon you got to do something. 

Best motivational poster caption ever. If you don't use this line today, tomorrow, and for the rest of your life, something is wrong with you.


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Sunday, April 19, 2015

Paperback 871: Dictators Die Hard / Robert A. Levey // Evil is the Night / John Creighton (Ace D-393)

Paperback 871: Ace Double D-393 (1st ptg / PBO)

Titles: Dictators Die Hard / Evil is the Night
Authors: Robert A. Levey / John Creighton
Cover artists: Uncredited / Uncredited

Estimated value: $25-30

Best things about this cover:

  • Dictators Die Hard—Stenographers Spank Harder!
  • Dictators Die Hard—You're Looking At My Chest, Aren't You?
  • I love the composition of this cover. Logically, this must depict two different scenes, but I like the idea of her staring down the gunman. "Oh, am I distracting you?" "I hope you're man enough to make the shot." "You *better* not be pointing that thing at me." "Hurry up so we can go riding, you tiresome lout!"
  • She borrowed her ascot from a foppish squirrel.

Best things about this other cover:

  • Jenga!
  • I hate to think where that thing's been.
  • "I'm thinking of calling my book 'Tender is the Night'" "That title's taken." "Hmmm…."

Page 123~

I stared at McMahon, and Hibbs scowled at me. Nobody said anything. It was an uncomfortable moment. 

This took 9th place in Yakima County's "Write Like Raymond Carver Day" competition.


[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Friday, April 17, 2015

Paperback 870: Saigon / Nick Carter (Award Books A122F)

Paperback 870: Award Books A122F (PBO, 1964)

Title: Saigon
Author: Nick Carter [Michael Avallone & Valerie Moolman]
Cover artist: Uncredited

Estimated value: $7

Best things about this cover:

  • Nothing says "Saigon" like a white lady in lacy lingerie on a candy-striped couch. I always say.
  • Nick Carter is the Ellery Queen of spy "chillers." Is he the author? The character? Both? Neither? The Smug Floating Head of Nick Carter says "Don't overthink it, baby. Just chill on my couch and I'll bring you a drink. [looks at her hand] OK, five drinks."

Best things about this back cover:

  • Spy vs. Spy > this.
  • If you're a big fan of torture / rape, then … "Saigon," I guess. Jeez.
  • Nick Carter went on to make millions in the exercise equipment market, though sales didn't really take off until he changed "Killmaster" to "Thighmaster."

Page 123~

The blade flicked from the narrow haft without a whisper. Nick crouched. Sighted. And threw. The head turned slightly. Beautiful!

Nick Carter: Eroticizing Ice-Pick Death Scenes Since 1964


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Friday, April 10, 2015

Paperback 869: N Or M? / Agatha Christie (Dell 187)

Paperback 869: Dell 187 (1st ptg, 1947)

Title: N Or M?
Author: Agatha Christie
Cover artist: Gerald Gregg

Estimated value: $10-15

Best things about this cover:

  • Norm!
  • The cigarette is puzzled. "What the hell does 'NORM' mean?" it wonders.
  • Design on this is so bizarre. Everything's laid out at odd angles, the cigarette ashes have an eerie, vermiform look to them, and the whole thing kinda looks like a white whale with "NorM" tattooed to the side of its face is trying to fight the scourge of smoking by devouring all related paraphernalia in its sight.
  • Gerald Gregg is a cover artist god. As early, non-sexy paperback covers go, his weird abstractions are my favorite.

Best things about this back cover:

  • Mappington! Backington! These never get old.
  • If you call your place "Smuggler's Rest," the cops *are* going to find you.
  • "Road." LOL. Thanks, map!
  • If the devil doesn't live at Sans Souci, he will soon.

Page 123~

"Friends of friends of yours, I think you said?" Tommy suggested mendaciously.

Tommy always was a mendacious little bastard. I've always said that about him.


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Thursday, April 9, 2015

Paperback 868: Framed In Blood / Brett Halliday (Dell 578)

Paperback 868: Dell 578 (1st ptg, 1952)

Title: Framed in Blood
Author: Brett Halliday
Cover artist: Robert Stanley

Estimated value: $10

Best things about this cover:

  • "Mmm hmm, I'd like to frame *that* in blood … wait, that came out creepy."
  • Sideboob. Someone call HuffPo.
  • "Was it an accident she left the door open? … I mean, it's like she *wants* me to furtively masturbate in her living room or something."
  • And when the fairy princess finished her Tai Chi, Mike knew he'd wasted his time.

Best things about this back cover:

  • Mmmmapback!
  • Mmmmmiami!
  • Mmmmike Shayne!
  • Mmmmmasturbation! (see cover)
  • Oooh, Ned Brooks' apartment. That *is* interesting.

Page 123~

Shayne's sore face muscles rebelled at an attempt at a wry grimace.

In fact, most of Mike's muscles rebelled at the shit Mike tried to do. You see, Mike was an idiot, and...


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