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

 1959, Ace Double, Boobs, Central America, John Creighton, Military, Neckwear, Riding Crop, Robert A. Levey, Statues, Uncredited  Comments Off on Paperback 871: Dictators Die Hard / Robert A. Levey // Evil is the Night / John Creighton (Ace D-393)
Apr 192015
 

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

AceD393A
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.

AceD393B
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.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Apr 172015
 

Paperback 870: Award Books A122F (PBO, 1964)

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

Estimated value: $7

AwardA122F
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.”

AwardA122Fbc
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

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Paperback 866: African Poison Murders / Elspeth Huxley (Popular Library 100)

 1946, Africa, Crime Fiction, Elspeth Huxley, Jungle, Mask, Popular Library, Uncredited  Comments Off on Paperback 866: African Poison Murders / Elspeth Huxley (Popular Library 100)
Mar 202015
 

Paperback 866: Popular Library 100 (1st ptg, 1946)

Title: African Poison Murders
Author: Elspeth Huxley
Cover artist: Uncredited

Estimated value: $12-17

Pop100
Best things about this cover:
  • “Here, African. Put this on. That’s better.” Hashtag racist.
  • Actually, maybe the green guy is a sick European. He looks like a 17th-century actor who has eaten some bad mutton.
  • If you stare too long at that foreshortened thumb, you will begin to get queasy. It’s… not right. Kind of like the relationship between green head and blue body. Not right at all.

Pop100bc
Best things about this back cover:
  • Read that second sentence as “Feces were smashed.” Was briefly intrigued.
  • A “native boy” wrapped in “baling wire.” Hmm. That’s a bit on the nose, as Slave-Trade metaphors go.
  • This book should’ve been called “Leopard Trap!” That, or “All’s Veld That Ends Veld.”

Page 123~

“It is the way of Europeans,” the house-boy said philosophically.

“You gotta read a lot of Kant to deal with these motherfuckers,” he added.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Paperback 865: Appointment for Sin / Paul V. Russo (Midwood F217)

 1962, Bad Hair, Bare feet, Boobs, Lesbian, Lesbians, massage, Midwood, Molded Plastic Hair, Uncredited, warped  Comments Off on Paperback 865: Appointment for Sin / Paul V. Russo (Midwood F217)
Mar 082015
 

Paperback 865: Midwood F217 (PBO, 1962)

Title: Appointment for Sin
Author: Paul V. Russo
Cover artist: Uncredited

Est. value: $22-25

MW217
Best things about this cover:

  • Suzie Masseuse’s gaze is burning a hole in that washcloth.
  • “Now that you’re naked, just cross your feet like … like so, and now … I strum your ankles. Isn’t that nice?”
  • I love how Blondewig Amplebosom’s like “Well is this a sin appointment or isn’t it? Jeez, what’s a girl gotta do to get some sin? I made an appointment and everything, and still no sin. Put my ankles down!”
  • I love orange, but no. This room color is a no.

MW217bc
Best things about this back cover:

  • Terrible tagline—stupid within
  • “Editor’s note” LOL. It’s in typewriter font, so you know it’s real.
  • Winnie and April will be plenty, thanks.

Page 123~

“Some of the clients are particularly fond of the vibrating mechanism in it.”
“Vib—”
Her hand closed his mouth.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Feb 162015
 

Paperback 860: Gold Medal 784 (PBO, 1958)

Title: Case of the Petticoat Murder
Author: Jonathan Craig
Cover artist: Uncredited

Estimated value: $20

GM784

Best things about this cover:

  • The second movement of “Eroica” *is* pretty groovy…
  • That hand is halfway between Fear Hand and “You Want Some of This?” Hand.
  • I really, really like that bare suggestion of a bed frame. It’s a pair of lips! It’s a gun sight! The whole spirit of Sexy/Danger conveyed in a few graceful black arcs.

GM784bc

Best things about this back cover:
  • Mustard. I think that’s what I’m looking at.
  • I wish all the non-green words would just drop away. Now that’s what I call “poetry.”
  • You rarely see detectives so proud of their necrophilic tendencies.

Page 123~

“Because, for one thing, I don’t care for alligator.”

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Paperback 852: The Astronaut / Hank Searls (Pocket Books 6093)

 1962, Astronaut, Beach, Bikini, Hank Searls, Pocket Books, Uncredited  Comments Off on Paperback 852: The Astronaut / Hank Searls (Pocket Books 6093)
Jan 212015
 

Paperback 852: Pocket Books 6093 (PBO, 1962)

Title: The Astronaut
Author: Hank Searls
Cover artist: Uncredited

Estimated value: $5-10

Donation to the collection from The Second Reader Bookshop (Buffalo, NY)

PB6093

Best things about this cover:

  • It’s the touching story of a lonely Stormtrooper and his inflatable girlfriend…
  • If you’re gonna fall to your death, may as well go out ogling bikini-clad blondes.
  • This must be just before he captures her and puts her in a bottle and makes her wear pajamas all day long.
  • The design here is actually spectacular. It’s got that wackadoodle ’60s vibe. Nice incorporation of the letter “O” into the spacesuit design. Stars in her eyes are a little cheesy / spot-on, but her little green bikini makes a nice visual impact, and the overall sun-drenchedness of the thing is a nice counterbalance to my mostly Dark cover collection.

PB6093bc

Best things about this back cover:

  • The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat, Literally.
  • “You down with M.P.P.?” (“M.S. Ph.D.!”)
  • Whoa, “hanky-panky at the motel”!? Tell me more. Seriously, if it happens at motels, I need to know.
  • Project Head? Really? No one batted an eyelash at that? OK, then, ’60s, carry on …

Page 123~

Straight in front of him were the retro-rocket controls, welded immovably in place so that the chimp could not override ground control.

Chimps? It’s got chimps? Talk about burying the lede…

~RP

P.S. Many thanks to John from The Second Reader Bookshop in Buffalo, NY, who reads my crossword blog and responded to my fund-raising drive there with a donation of books for here. Two more coming later this week.

P.P.S. John also sent me this postcard, which … well, if you all won’t appreciate it, I don’t know who will:

LUBERACK
[Miss Lube Rack]

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Paperback 849: Warrant for X / Philip MacDonald (Pocket Books 328)

 1945, Dead Man, Fedora, lampposts, matches, Philip MacDonald, Pocket Books, Scotland Yard, Uncredited  Comments Off on Paperback 849: Warrant for X / Philip MacDonald (Pocket Books 328)
Jan 082015
 

Paperback 849: Pocket Books 328 (1st ptg, 1945)

Title: Warrant for X
Author: Philip MacDonald
Cover artist: Uncredited

Estimated value: $10-15

PB328

Best things about this cover:

  • “Light, damn you! Stupid modern, flame retardant bodies! I want s’mores now!”
  • By far the fanciest lamppost you’re likely to see on any of my covers.
  • I genuinely love how the body spills out of frame. And the color scheme. And the “X”.

PB328bc

Best things about this back cover:

  • “Kidnapping!” is pretty anti-climactic. “Cannibalism!” was about what I was expecting with that build-up.
  • They used to tell you how much it would cost to ship the book to a soldier overseas. Now it’s just “Share it with anyone in a uniform, don’t ask us what it costs, how should we know?” I hope people gave books to their diner waitresses.

Page 123~

He said: “I’m a busy man. Great matters hang upon my every word and action.” He drank coffee. “I might justly be likened to the spider.”

Though not lacking in confidence, Anthony was still working on his metaphor skills.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Paperback 839: Man from Tomorrow / Wilson Tucker (Bantam 1343)

 1955, Aliens, Bantam, Crazy eyes, Floating Head, mutants, SciFi, Uncredited, Wilson Tucker  Comments Off on Paperback 839: Man from Tomorrow / Wilson Tucker (Bantam 1343)
Nov 292014
 

Paperback 839: Bantam 1343 (1st ptg, 1955)

Title: Man From Tomorrow
Author: Wilson Tucker
Cover artist: Uncredited

Approximate value: $6-10

Bant1343

Best things about this cover:

  • “OK, so main guy shoots beams out of his eyes, and then the lady in his head shoots beams out of her face and … I don’t know … let’s say, whirlpool aliens wicker man done. Got it?”
  • This floating head has his own internal floating head. That’s pretty high-end.
  • Font colors are wicked stupid.
  • Ooh, this novel “tells of something which may be happening now.” Ooh, is it Armageddon? Winter? The Greater Rochester Arts & Crafts Festival!? I’m gonna have to read this.

Bant1343bc

Best things about this back cover:
  • And the razor frisbee takes out another alien.
  • “Perhaps” … way to sell it!
  • The Paul Breens = your next band name.

Page 123~

Paul wondered if this new woman in the adjoining apartment would be a plant.

“A ficus, maybe,” he fantasized.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]

Paperback 838: Hell-Town in Texas / Leslie Ernenwein (Avon 873)

 1960, Avon Books, Horses, Leslie Ernenwein, MWG, texas, Uncredited, Western  Comments Off on Paperback 838: Hell-Town in Texas / Leslie Ernenwein (Avon 873)
Nov 272014
 

Paperback 838: Avon 873 (2nd ptg?, 1960)

Title: Hell-Town in Texas
Author: Leslie Ernenwein
Cover artist: Uncredited

Estimated value: $15-20

Avon873

Best things about this cover:

  • Are there other kinds of towns in Texas?
  • Despite appearing relatively generic, there’s actually something spare, pared-down, and gorgeous about this cover. The pure blue background gives a sense of delicacy to the men and horses, and that dust is some kind of abstract magic. Just great.
  • Books don’t come in better condition than this. Off-the-shelf new. Sparkly, even.

Avon873bc

Best things about this back cover:

  • But what’s his name!?
  • Clyde Lambert grabbed a fish, but Marshal Terhune stopped him: “No, Clyde. Not Missouri Style. *Texas* Style.” So they dueled with grapefruits.
  • That’s a pretty nice marshal sketch, truth be told. Only marshals and stone-cold fops can get away with an ascot like that.

Page 123~

Contacting the same friends who’d turned down the Oro Kid scheme, he found them eager to invest their savings in his sawmill proposition.

There’s two great crime novel titles right there: “The Oro Kid Scheme” and “The Sawmill Proposition.”  You’re welcome, writers.

Happy Thanksgiving,

~RP

Paperback 760: Slan / A.E. Van Vogt (Dell 696)

 1953, A.E. Van Vogt, atoms, contest, Dell, Groff Conklin, GWG, SciFi, Uncredited  Comments Off on Paperback 760: Slan / A.E. Van Vogt (Dell 696)
Apr 072014
 

Paperback 760: Dell 696 (1st ptg, 1953)

Title: Slan
Author: A.E. Van Vogt
Cover artist: Uncredited, aarrgh!

Yours for: $20

Dell696

Best things about this cover:
  • “I Was a 22nd-Century Gun Moll!”
  • Her mouth! Is she talking? Hissing? Shouting “Slan!”?
  • I have seen the future. It is full of 8th graders’ atom diagrams.
  • Pretty bold to paint right on top of a well-used bandage.
  • Quintessential mid-century sci-fi cover art. Iconic. Beautiful. Perfect.

Dell696bc

Best things about this back cover.
  • Why aren’t people named “Groff” any more? Or “Jommy”?
  • Idea: Western / Scifi epic with a hero named “Slim Tendrils”…
  • I’m guessing that’s not “Jommy” on the cover. But who knows what the future holds…

Page 123~

The impression smashed into fragments. Granny.

That has to be the weirdest two-sentence sequence in literary history.

~RP

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Tumblr]