Sep 222014
 
All CIA agent Scott Steletto had to do was bring captured terrorist Brendan Miller to the U.S. He even had extra security to make sure nothing went wrong.  But something does go wrong. Another terrorist group, seeing Miller's value to the CIA, snatches him in a blinding fast raid that leaves four agents dead and Steletto wounded.  The New World Revolutionary Front demands a ransom, and if
Sep 212014
 
The first issue of a fairly short-lived hero pulp from the Thrilling Group. I know I've read a reprint of the lead novel, but I don't remember a thing about it. Maybe it wasn't even this one. It might have been one of the other Masked Detective yarns. The author behind the C.K.M. Scanlon house-name was the very prolific Norman Daniels, who wrote many of the Phantom Detective novels, among
Sep 192014
 
(This post originally appeared on August 20, 2007) I’ve been a fan of Bill Pronzini’s work ever since I read his Man From U.N.C.L.E. novella “The Pillars of Salt Affair” in the MFU digest magazine sometime in the late Sixties. Of course, I didn’t know at the time that Pronzini had written that story. It was published under the house-name Robert Hart Davis, a tribute by publisher Leo Margulies
Sep 172014
 
An atmospheric and eagerly-awaited debut novel from acclaimed crime writer Patricia Abbott, set in Philadelphia in the 1970's about a family torn apart by a mother straight out of "Mommy Dearest", and her children who are at first victims but soon learn they must fight back to survive. Eve Moran has always wanted “things” and has proven both inventive and tenacious in getting and keeping them
Sep 142014
 
I'm not used to seeing photo covers on pulps, but that's what we've got here. And what a line-up of authors: Lester Dent, Theodore Tinsley, Steve Fisher, Norvell Page, Frank Gruber, Laurence Donovan, and a story under the Maxwell Grant house-name that could well have been by one of those guys. Plenty of good reading in this issue, I'm sure.
Aug 292014
 
When Joe Lansdale mentioned on Facebook that an e-book edition of this collection was available, I knew I had to get it. My copy of the original edition is gone, and I wanted to read the introductions by Joe and Lew Shiner again. They're the best part of this book for me. Not that the stories themselves aren't very good. They are. Some of my favorites, in fact. PRIVATE EYE ACTION AS YOU LIKE
Aug 182014
 
Darwyn Cooke's graphic novel adaptations of Donald E. Westlake's Parker novels continue with SLAYGROUND. I actually haven't read all of the Parker novels (I know, I know, I should have by now), but I have read this one and remember enjoying it very much. It's the one in which Parker, after a botched armored car robbery, is trapped by gangsters and crooked cops in a deserted amusement park
Aug 132014
 
Jack Laramie, the Drifter Detective, is back in DINERO DEL MAR, which recounts three loosely connected cases that find Jack spending some time in my old stomping grounds, the Corpus Christi area. He's mixed up in an attempt to fix a beauty pageant, gets another case involving beatniks, bohemians, and artists when he's thrown into the drunk tank, and finally stumbles on a murder plot tied in
Aug 112014
 
Mike Baron is another author whose work I read first in comic books, but he's a fine novelist as well. I'd previously read and enjoyed his horror novel HELMET HEAD. WHACK JOB is an action/adventure thriller (or at least it starts out that way) and is equally entertaining. This novel opens with a top-secret black ops mission to Libya several years ago that finds American agents infiltrating a