|Vintage Pulp||Aug 1 2022|
Whatever floats your corpse.
Art by Paul Rader fronts this copy of Samuel A. Krasney's A Mania for Blondes, a police proceedural dealing with two women drowned in Philadelphia's Delaware River, and the investigation to bring a killer to justice. The protagonist here is vice detective Ben Krahmer, who learns that both victims appeared in nudie reels. The clues lead down the rabbit hole of illicit porn and toward a mysterious suspect witnesses think looks like Zorro—but who Krahmer soon realizes may be a member of Pennsylvania's traditionally garbed Dutch community. Procedurals sometimes—as is the case here—fail to provide deep characterizations, but the mechanics of the investigation are interesting. Krasney constantly refers to his protagonist as “the Morals man”—capital M—which we found weird, but we thought this outing was solid overall and we liked the Zorro imagery. Even so, we probably won't go looking for more from Krasney unless we run across him cheap. There are, after all, so many paperbacks, and so little time.
|Vintage Pulp||Feb 2 2014|
Pull the blinds and turn out the lights.
We’ve explored several cover motifs in pulp art, and another we’ve grown to appreciate is the use of venetian blind shadows or silhouettes. Always a dramatic addition to a cover, we could probably compile fifty of these, at least, but here are twenty examples. The artists—Olivier Brabbins, Emilio Freix, Robert Maguire, James Hodges, and others—use them to greater and lesser degrees, and opt for both literal and stylized renderings. For instance, the above cover from Maguire shows vertical shadows, but the sense of venetian blinds remains. As always, thanks to all the original uploaders.
Samuel A. KrasneyWilliam HaggardBrett HallidayCharlotte ArmstrongMark HalloranJules RoyMichael BryanA.S. FleischmanPeter RofalsLouis TrimbleJohn FarrisJohn Dickson CarrCharles E. FritchOlivier BrabbinsEmilio FreixRobert MaguireJ.D. SalingerLou D. WolfeJames HodgesDon ElliottEarl NormanOliver BrabbinsChristopher NicoleCarter Browncover artcover collectionliterature