Search Results for 'heatter'


BASIL HEATTER – Virgin Cay [+] A Night Out. Stark House, trade paperback; 1st printing, July 2017. Includes Virgin Cay (Gold Medal, paperback original, 1963) and A Night Out (Popular Library, paperback original, 1956). Introduction by Steve Lewis.

   The book actually needs no introduction, not if you’ve read my reviews of the two paperback novels that comprise this just published reprint of both, here:

http://mysteryfile.com/blog/?p=47342

and here:

http://mysteryfile.com/blog/?p=47173

   Of course, you could go back and read both reviews and then buy the Stark House combo, which not too surprisingly, if you think about it, I do recommend.

           

BASIL HEATTER – Virgin Cay. Gold Medal k1310, paperback original; 1st printing, June 1963.

   The primary protagonist in Virgin Cay, just as it was in A Night Out (reviewed here ), also by Basil Heatter, is once again a dedicated boatsman plying his trade in the Gulf of Mexico off the Florida shore, and if anything, even more so.

   But “plying his trade” is not entirely accurate. When asked what he does for a living (page 12), Gus Robinson’s reply is:

    “A man alone on a boat doesn’t have to make much of what you call a living. To me living and sailing are the same thing and when you’re out at sea there’s no place to spend money even if you have it, which I don’t.”

   Asking the question is a fine-looking woman whose home on Virgin Cay is where Gus washes ashore after his boat goes down about ten miles out to sea. They hit it off so well that before he leaves the next morning, the delectable Clare Loomis has a business proposition for him, one that if accepted will net Gus a cool $20,000.

   The proposition? Murder. Ordinarily Gus wouldn’t think twice before refusing, but without a boat, he’d be lost trying to survive on land. The next question: who would he have to kill? And there, as it turns out, is where the rub comes in.

   The first twist in the story is an obvious one, or it was to me and I suspect it will be to you as well. After that, though, the beauty of this story is that you, the reader, have no idea of what happens from there.

   But what does happen will have you reading the last 40 pages about as fast as you can turn them. Is the ending a happy one? I won’t tell you. Why spoil your fun?

   Heatter is a more polished writer than he was in A Night Out, written some seven years earlier, but this time around, while the sense of doomed futility is there, it is not nearly as strong. This is a suspense novel more than it is a crime thriller, and even then, the emphasis is on being a novel.

   In that regard, there are some not-so-subtle hints of John D. MacDonald in this later book, most evident when Gus reflects with dismay upon what the Florida landscape is starting to become. He’s a boat person, through and through, which I suspect was as true about the author as it is about Gus Robinson.

BASIL HEATTER – A Night Out. Popular Library #771, paperback original; 1st printing, September 1956. A shorter version appeared in Manhunt, September 1954, as “The Empty Fort.”

   For an author with a double dozen books to his credit, over a period of over three decades, there is not much known about Basil Heatter (1918-2009), except for one fact that is invariably mentioned whenever his name comes up.

   Here, for example, is the biographical blurb about him that’s on the first page of the book in hand:

    “Born on Long Island in 1918, Basil Heatter attended schools in Connecticut, then went abroad when he was 16 for a two year travel stint in Europe.

    “Returning to America, he went to work for a New York advertising agency. During the war he served as skipper of a P.T. boat in the southwest Pacific.

    “He is the son of Gabriel Heatter, the radio commentator, and at present he, Basil, is a news commentator for the Mutual Broadcasting System.”

   That was in 1956. From CRIME FICTION IV: A Comprehensive Bibliography, 1749-2000, by Allen J. Hubin (2015), we learn just a little more:

    “Born on Long Island, the son of radio commentator Gabriel Heatter; was advertising copywriter in 1970s living on a boat off Florida, and racing and chartering; died in Miami, FL.”

   Heatter has thirteen books included in CFIV, one marginally, but at the moment A Night Out is not one of them, and it should be. The crime involved is not a major one, I grant you, not at the beginning, at least — that of smuggling some booze out of Cuba to shrimp boat skipper Johnny Flake’s home port of Key West — but small capers like this often run into trouble, matters escalate, and some people end up wounded or dead, and that’s exactly what happens here.

   While this is criminous enough to suit most readers of this blog, I’d have to admit that most of the book consists of character studies of the players in it. All of them have a past, and events in the past have a way of making people who they are today. It takes awhile for their paths to converge, however, ending in a midnight shootout in an abandoned fort off the islands of Dry Torgugas, but the getting there is well worth it.

   There are two women involved, Molly being the one that Flake let get away, and the other Jessica, is the promiscuous live-in lady friend of yachtsman Allan Chambers, who can’t live without her, but neither can he live with her. Another player is an old rummy named Cruze, who was at one time a terrific ship’s engineer, but it’s only because Flake needs someone in a hurry does he hire on the old man who’s now seriously afflicted with the shakes and an unquenchable thirst.

   More than a crime novel, what this book is is pure noir. Most — not all — of the participants in the drama that takes place in this book are doomed, in one way or another. Most have no future, save what chance and pure luck give them. There’s little they can do to help themselves.

   Although far from being in their league, Heatter channels F. Scott Fitzgerald and maybe Ernest Hemingway in this novel, more so than he does either of the two old standbys of Hammett and Chandler. While all but forgotten today, Heatter is more than adequate as a writer — he certainly knew his way around boats and the Gulf of Mexico — and he brings his characters enough to life that I know I’ll remember them all for a while to come.

   John Payne could play Johnny, and Walter Brennan would be perfect as Cruze. Gail Russell could easily be Molly, but to tell you the truth, no matter what movie taking place in the 50s that I happen to be casting, there’d always be a part for Gail Russell.

   No cover artist this time, as you can see. If the object of a paperback cover is to attract potential buyers, this one should have. The strategy may not have worked, though. There are only 12 copies offered for sale on ABE, suggesting not many were sold in the first place. (Or perhaps anyone who has a copy is keeping it.)

Basil Heatter- The Golden Stag

PINNACLE paperback original; 1st printing, April 1976.

      From the front cover:

A gold artifact from the sixth century, a treasure of the Czars. Many had died for it, and the killing continues …

      From the back cover:

She was very convincing…

    “Like so many of the Scythian tombs; it had already been robbed, perhaps centuries before. But then a secret compartment was discovered. In it was a single artifact, a sold gold stag nearly two feet long and twelve inches high. It was resting on an iron shield which covered the bones of one of the chieftains. The stag was in a prone position with its forepaws folded under and a long golden mane flowing back from its antlers to its tail. Its design and concept are so close to the abstract forms of today that one can hardly believe it was created twenty-five hundred years ago. In terms of value, there is no way to put a price tag on it. Except for a few precious gems, it is probably the most valuable piece of its kind in the world today…”

    Devlin looked at Irina, drank in her exquisitely beautiful face, a figure that put his blood on fire, and wondered why she was so eager to tell him this Russian fairy tale. Especially now, after he was suspected of killing a French diplomat. Even that unfortunate event could be traced to his first meeting with Irina. A most innocent meeting.

    Now it would be different. Their eyes spoke a language that was anything but innocent. The strong, heady aroma of cognac — and Irina — decided it all.

    Tomorrow he would see about that finding that goddamn stag…

[COMMENTS] In case you were wondering, and are old enough to wonder, yes, Basil Heatter is the son of Gabriel Heatter, the well-known radio commentator for the Mutual Broadcasting System during World War II, and on through the 1950s.

   And Tim Devlin, the primary protagonist of The Golden Stag, is a series character. He also appeared in Devlin’s Triangle, Pinnacle, 1976. He’s the head of Devlin Underwriters, a “small but highly respected marine insurance firm.”

THE BEST OF MANHUNT 2. Edited by Jeff Vorzimmer. Stark House, trade paperback, August 2020.

   Well, this was a nice surprise. It was a typical gray and gloomy sky here in Connecticut all day, drizzling on and off, or at least it was until I discovered what Rose my mail carrier dropped off for me this afternoon, and all of sudden everything got a whole lot cheerier.

   I’ve not begun to read it, but you can bet the farm I will be over the next few months until August when it officially comes out and you’ll be able to as well. I’ve listed the contents below. You may be struck as quickly that as I was that some of the authors don’t seem to have the same “name value” that the first collection did. I think that that’s all to the good and am willing to wager that the stories were chosen on how good they are, and not so much who wrote them.

   If there are any errors in the Table of Contents below, they’re mine. I didn’t type them in by hand, but OCR scanning is still often only an approximate art.

Forward: For The Love of Manhunt … Peter Enfantino. .. 7
Introduction … Jon L. Breen … 11
On the Passing of Manhunt … Jon.L. Breen … 15
Life and Death of a Magazine … Robert Turner … 17
A Stabbing in the Street … Elezazer Lipsky … 23
As I Lie Dead … Fletcher Flora … .36
So Dark for April … Howard Browne … 49
Shakedown … Roy Carroll … 66
The Choice … Richard Deming … 73
Confession … John M. Sitan … 85
The.Empty Fort … Basil Heatter … 92
You Can’t Trust a Man … Helen Nielsen … 127
Sylvia … Ira Levin … 136
Protection … Erle Stanley Gardner … 15
Blonde at tl1e Wheel Stephen Marlowe 154
Vanishing Act … W. . Burnett … 166
One More Mile to Go … F. J. Smith … 186
Key Witness … Frank Kane … 192
Puddin’ nd Pie … De. Forbes … 229
Blood and Moonlight … William R. Cox … 234
Shadowed … Richard Wormser … 244
Deatl1 of a Big Wheel … William Campbell Gault … 248
The Geniuses … Max Franklin … 271
Kitchen Kill … Jonathan Craig … 285
The Crying Target … James McKimmey … 299
The Girl Friend … Mark Mallory … 320
Midnight Caller … Wade Miller … 326
Arrest … Donald E Westlake … 329
Time to Kill … Bryce Walton … 333
Absinthe for Superman … Robert Edmond Alter … 356
Wharf Rat … Robert Page Jones … 333
The Safe Kill … Kenneth Moore … 374
A Question of Values … C. L. Sweeney, Jr … 378
Shatter Proof … ]ack Ritchie … 381
The Old Pro … H. A. DeRosso … 385
Retribution … Michael Zuroy … 395
In Memoriam … Charles Boeckman … 398
Bugged … Bruno Fischer … 402
Interference … Glenn Canary … 412

   

[UPDATE] Jiro Kimura has advised me that the contents have changed slightly from the galley from which I obtained the above to the final product. He says: “It does not have ‘Sylvia’ by Ira Levin but ‘Where There’s Smoke’ by Edward D. Hoch instead, which was an Al Darlan story first printed in the March 1964 issue of Manhunt.

   “Hoch’s story was placed at the bottom of the contents page and the last one in the book.”

ROARING LIONS: A Chronological Bibliography of All Crime Fiction Titles in LION BOOKS and LION LIBRARY
by Josef Hoffmann


   Lion Books were published by Martin Goodman. This paperback line lasted from 1949 until 1955 and was edited by the legendary Arnold Hano, an author of western and crime novels and of a classic baseball book.

   He promoted Jim Thompson, David Goodis, Robert Bloch, David Karp, Richard Matheson and other very good crime writers by publishing their work as paperback originals. He also promoted a rising star novelist named Kenneth Millar (Ross Macdonald) and other important authors – Stanley Ellin and Gerald Kersh, for example – in paperback reprints.

   Although not all crime novelists of Lion Books are in this class Lion Books usually stand for a certain level of writing. Most of the Lion Books are collectible paperbacks with good cover art by Rudolph Belarski, Harry Schaare, Robert Maguire, Robert Stanley, Mort Kunstler and others. Some books are now very pricey.

   The publisher established a similar paperback line called Lion Library when Hano left in 1954. It lasted from 1954 until 1957 and published in part the same writers. Finally New American Library purchased Lion Books, Inc.

   As I do not own many Lion Books I obtained the information about this paperback line from Jon Warren: The Official Price Guide Paperbacks, House of Collectibles, N. Y. 1991; Gary Lovisi: Antique Trader Collectible Paperback Price Guide, Krause Publications, Iola, WI, 2008.

   Which of the Lion Books were crime titles and which were reprints of first editions, I learned from Allen J. Hubin: Crime Fiction IV. A Comprehensive Bibliography, 1749-2000, 2010 Revised Edition, Locus Press.

    Warning: If you read too many Lion Books in a short time the simplicity and vulgarity of their vernacular will get on your nerves. There are just too many words like hell, swell, kill, hate, lust, sin, skin, sweat, blood, babe, blonde, dope, jungle etc.

   And the emotions of the protagonists are too direct and primitive. You will long for the reflected, differentiated and elegant prose of authors like Chandler, Woolrich or Highsmith. So after a typical Lion Book it is better to read something very different like a humorous detective novel or a historical mystery to be able to enjoy another Lion Book once in a while.

         LION BOOKS:     (PBO = paperback original)

Morgan, Michael (C. E. Carle/Dean M. Dorn): The Blonde Body (LB 11), 1949; cover art Len Oehman. First edition: Nine More Lives, Random House 1947

LION BOOKS

Jackson, Shirley: The Lottery (LB 14), 1950; cover art Herman Bischoff. First edition: Farrar 1949 (short stories)

Marsh, Peter: The Devil’s Daughter (LB 16), 1949; cover art William Shoyer. First edition: Swift 1942

Ross, Sam: He Ran All the Way (LB 19), 1950; cover art Harry Schaare. First edition: Farrar 1947

Tucker, Wilson: To Keep or Kill (LB 21), 1950; cover art Herman Bischoff. First edition: Rinehart 1947

LION BOOKS

Lynch, William: The Intimate Stranger (LB 25), 1950; cover art Woodi. PBO.

Balchin, Nigel: The Small Back Room (LB 31), 1950; cover art Wesley Snyder. First edition: Collins 1943

Jackson, Shirley: The Road Through the Wall (LB 36), 1950; cover art Harvey Kidder. First edition: Farrar 1949

Gray, Russell (Bruno Fischer): The Lustful Ape (LB 38), 1950; cover art Julian Paul. PBO.

Appel, Benjamin: Brain Guy (LB 39), 1950. First edition: Knopf 1934

Ellin, Stanley: The Big Night (LB 41), 1950. First edition: Dreadful Summit, Simon 1948

LION BOOKS

Eastman, Elizabeth: His Dead Wife (LB 44), 1950. First edition: The Mouse with Red Eyes, Farrar 1948

Tracy, Don: How Sleeps the Beast (LB 45), 1950. First edition: Constable 1937

Millar, Kenneth: Trouble Follows Me (LB 47), 1950. First edition: Dodd 1946

LION BOOKS

Millar, Kenneth: The Dark Tunnel (LB 48), 1950. First edition: Dodd 1944

Jaediker, Kermit: Tall, Dark and Dead (LB 51), 1951. First edition: Mystery House 1947

Wilhelm, Gale: No Letters for the Dead (LB 52), 1951; cover art Pease. First edition: Random House 1936; reprint: No Nice Girl, Pyramid G-440, 1959

Bordages, Asa: The Glass Lady (LB 56), 1951. First edition: Godwin 1932

Teagle, Mike: Murders in Silk (LB 60), 1951. First edition: Hillman-Curl 1938

Trimble, Louis: Blondes Are Skin Deep (LB 62), 1951. PBO

LION BOOKS

Keene, Day: My Flesh Is Sweet (LB 68), 1951. PBO

Tracy, Don: The Cheat (LB 69), 1951; cover art Harry Schaare. First edition: Criss-Cross, Vanguard 1934

Bogar, Jeff (Ronald Wills Thomas): The Tigress (LB 72), 1951. First edition: Payoff for Paula, Hamilton & Co. 1951

Durst, Paul: Die, Damn You! (LB 75), 1952. PBO. (Classified as a western by Lovisi.)

Gordon, James: The Lust of Private Cooper (LB 77), 1952. First edition: Of Our Time, Dobson 1946; reprint: Collision, Farrar 1947

Bogar, Jeff (Ronald Wills Thomas): My Gun, Her Body (LB 79), 1952. First edition: Dinah for Danger, Hamilton & Co. 1952

LION BOOKS

Butler, Gerald: The Lurking Man (LB 81), 1952. First edition: Mad with Much Heart, Jarrolds 1945

Wolfson, P. J.: Bodies Are Dust (LB 83), 1952. First edition: Vanguard 1931

Prather, Richard S.: Lie Down, Killer (LB 85), 1952. PBO

LION BOOKS

Wills, Thomas (William Ard): You’ll Get Yours (LB 87), 1952. PBO

Lucas, Curtis (William Francis Urell): So Low, So Lonely (LB 91), 1952. PBO

Karp, David: The Big Feeling (LB 93), 1952. PBO

Evans, John (Howard Browne): Lona (LB 94), 1952; cover art Earle Bergey. First edition: If You Have Tears, Mystery House 1947; reprint: The Blonde Dies First, Horwitz 1956

LION BOOKS

Appel, Benjamin: Hell’s Kitchen (LB 95), 1952. PBO

Kersh, Gerald: Prelude to a Certain Midnight (LB 98), 1952; cover art Rudolph Belarski. First edition: Heinemann 1947

Thompson, Jim: The Killer Inside Me (LB 99), 1952. PBO

LION BOOKS

Elliott, Bruce: One Is a Lonely Number (LB 100), 1952; cover art Earle Bergey. PBO

Paul, Gene (Paul Conant): Little Killer (LB 104), 1952; cover art Prezio. PBO

Karp, David: The Brotherhood of Velvet (LB 105), 1952. pBO

Thompson, Jim: Cropper’s Cabin (LB 108), 1952. PBO

LION BOOKS

Eisner, Simon (Cyril M. Kornbluth): The Naked Storm (LB 109), 1952; cover art Robert Skemp. PBO

Ring, Douglas (Richard S. Prather): The Peddler (LB 110), 1952. PBO

Walker, Shel (Walter J. Sheldon): The Man I Killed (LB 112), 1952. PBO

Karp, David: Hardman (LB 119), 1953; cover art Prezio. PBO

Thompson, Jim: Recoil (LB 120), 1953. PBO

Francis, William (William Francis Urell): Don’t Dig Deeper (LB 123), 1953. PBO

Goodis, David: The Burglar (LB 124), 1953. PBO

LION BOOKS

Thompson, Jim: The Alcoholics (LB 127), 1953. PBO

Otis, G. H.: Bourbon Street (LB 131), 1953. PBO

Karp, David: Cry, Flesh (LB 132), 1953. PBO

Goodis, David: The Dark Chase (LB 133), 1953; cover art Julian Paul. First edition: Nightfall, Messner 1947

Matheson, Richard: Someone Is Bleeding (LB 137), 1953. PBO

LION BOOKS

Untermeyer, Jr., Walter: Dark the Summer Dies (LB 138), 1953. PBO

Scott, Warwick (Elleston Trevor): Cockpit (LB 140), 1953. First edition: Image in the Dust, Davies 1951

Roueche, Berton: Rooming House (LB 141), 1953. First edition: Black Weather, Reynal 1945

Scott, Warwick (Elleston Trevor): Doomsday (LB 148), 1953. First edition: The Domesday Story, Davies 1952

Thompson, Jim: Bad Boy (LB 149), 1953; cover art Mort Kunstler. PBO

Falstein, Louis: Slaughter Street (LB 151), 1953; cover art Lou Marchetti. PBO

Lorenz, Frederick (Lorenz Heller): A Rage at Sea (LB 152), 1953; cover art Maguire. PBO

Bezzerides, A. I.: Tough Guy (LB 153), 1953. First edition: Long Haul, Carrick 1938; reprint: They Drive by Night, Dell Book 416, 1950

LION BOOKS

Paul, Gene (Paul Conant): Naked in the Dark (LB 154), 1953. PBO

Thompson, Jim: Savage Night (LB 155), 1953. PBO

Jaediker, Kermit: Hero’s Lust (LB 156), 1953; cover art Lou Marchetti. PBO

Lipsky, Eleazar: The Hoodlum (LB 161), 1953. First edition: The Kiss of Death, Penguin 1947

Curtis, Lucas (William Francis Urell): Angel (LB 162), 1953. PBO

Manners, William: The Big Lure (LB 165), 1953. PBO

Appel, Benjamin: Dock Walloper (LB 166), 1953. PBO

Heatter, Basil: Sailor’s Luck (LB 170), 1953. PBO

Otis, G. H.: Hot Cargo (LB 171), 1953. PBO

LION BOOKS

Francis, William (William Francis Urell): The Corrupters (LB 174), 1953. PBO

Leiber, Fritz: Conjure Wife (LB 179), 1953; cover art Robert Maguire. First edition: Twayne 1953. (Classified as SF by Lovisi.)

Matheson, Richard: Fury on Sunday (LB 180), 1953. PBO

LION BOOKS

Thompson, Jim: The Criminal (LB 184), 1953. PBO

Bloch, Robert: The Kidnaper (LB 185), 1954. PBO

Goodis, David: The Blonde on the Street Corner (LB 186), 1954. PBO

Fairman, Paul W.: The Joy Wheel (LB 190), 1954. PBO

Thompson, Jim: The Golden Gizmo (LB 192), 1954. PBO

Lorenz, Frederick (Lorenz Heller): Night Never Ends (LB 193), 1954; cover art Clark Hulings. PBO

Meskil, Paul S.: Sin Pit (LB 198), 1954; PBO

Rosmanith, Olga (Ferney Wood): The Long Thrill (LB 200), 1954. PBO

Thompson, Jim: Roughneck (LB 201), 1954. PBO

Keene, Day: Sleep with the Devil (LB 204), 1954. PBO

LION BOOKS

Craig, Jonathan: Alley Girl (LB 206), 1954. PBO. Reprint: Renegade Cop, Berkley 1959

Trevor, Elleston: Tiger Street (LB 207), 1954. First edition: Boardman 1951

Keene, Day: Joy House (LB 210), 1954. PBO

Sparkia, Roy Benard: Boss Man (LB 211), 1954. PBO

Thompson, Jim: A Swell-Looking Babe (LB 212), 1954. PBO

LION BOOKS

Fessier, Michael: Fully Dressed and in His Right Mind (LB 214), 1954. First edition: Knopf 1935

Flora, Fletcher: Strange Sisters (LB 215), 1954. PBO

Cassill, R. V.: Dormitory Women (LB 216), 1954. PBO

Thompson, Jim: A Hell of a Woman (LB 218), 1954. PBO

Manners, William: Wharf Girl (LB 219), 1954. PBO

Davis, Jr., Franklin M., The Naked and the Lost (LB 221), 1954. PBO

Untermeyer, Jr., Walter: Evil Roots (LB 222), 1954. PBO

Lorenz, Frederick (Lorenz Heller): The Savage Chase (LB 223), 1954; cover art Al Rossi. PBO

Goodis, David: Black Friday (LB 224), 1954. PBO

Baldwin, Linton: Sinners’ Game (LB 227), 1954. PBO

Heatter, Basil: Act of Violence (LB 228), 1954; cover art John Leone. PBO

Lipman, Clayre & Michel: House of Evil (LB 231), 1954. PBO

         LION LIBRARY:

Frazee, Steve: The Sky Block (LL-3), 1954; cover art Robert Maguire. First edition: Rinehart 1953

Wolfson, P. J.: The Flesh Baron (LL-4), 1955. First edition: Is My Flesh of Brass?, Vanguard 1934

LION BOOKS

Kennedy, Stetson: Passage to Violence (LL-9), 1954; cover art Al Rossi. PBO

Karp, David: Escape to Nowhere (LL-10), 1955. First edition: One, Vanguard 1953

Rosen, Victor: Dark Plunder (LL-11), 1955; cover art Al Rossi. PBO

Clark, Christopher: The Unleashed Will (LL-15), 1955. First edition: Little 1947

Greene, Graham: Nineteen Stories (LL-31), 1955; cover art Arthur Shilstone. First edition: Heinemann 1947

Walker, David: The Storm and the Silence (LL-33), 1955; cover art George Erickson. First edition: Houghton 1949

Millar, Kenneth: Night Train (LL-40), 1955; cover art Samson Pollen. Reprints LB 47 with new title.

Gordon, James: Collision (LL-41), 1955; cover art Gilbert Fullington. Reprints LB 77 with new title.

Coates, Robert M.: The Night Before Dying (LL-45), 1955; cover art Al Brule. First edition: Wisteria Cottage, Harcourt 1948

Millar, Kenneth: I Die Slowly (LL-52), 1955. Reprints LB 48 with new title

Ross, Sam: He Ran All the Way (LL-59), 1955; cover art George Gross. Reprints LB 19.

Lorenz, Frederick (Lorenz Heller): A Party Every Night (LL-63), 1956; cover art Robert Schultz. PBO

Kauffman, Lane: Kill the Beloved (LL-64), 1956; cover art Charles Copeland. First edition: The Perfectionist, Lippincott 1954

Garland, Rodney (Adam Hegedus): The Heart in Exile (LL-76), 1956; cover art Arthur Shilstone. First edition: Allen 1953

Tucker, Wilson: To Keep or Kill (LL-84), 1956; cover art Robert Maguire. Reprints LB 21.

Karp, David: The Girl on Crown Street (LL-86), 1956. Reprints LB 132 with new title.

Flora, Fletcher: The Brass Bed (LL-87), 1956. PBO

Kent, David: A Knife Is Silent (LL-91), 1956; cover art Mort Kunstler. First edition: Random House 1947

Miller, Wade: Kiss Her Goodbye (LL-96), 1956; cover art Charles Copeland. PBO

LION BOOKS

Park, Jordan (Cyril M. Kornbluth): Sorority House (LL-97), 1956; cover art Clark Hulings. PBO

Lorenz, Frederick (Lorenz Heller): Ruby (LL-104), 1956; cover art Samson Pollen. PBO

Wilhelm, Gale: Paula (LL-115), 1956; cover art Morgan Kane. Reprints LB 52 with new title.

Appel, Benjamin: Alley Kids (LL-116), 1956; cover art Samson Pollen/Carlos De Mema. Reprints LB 95 with new title.

Tracy, Don: The Cheat (LL-118), 1956; cover art Charles Copeland. Reprints LB 69.

Thompson, Jim: Recoil (LL-124), 1956; cover art Robert Maguire. Reprints LB 120.

Eisner, Simon (Cyril M. Kornbluth): The Naked Storm (LL-125), 1956; cover art Robert Stanley. Reprints LB 109.

Garland, Rodney (Adam Hegedus)
: The Troubled Midnight (LL-128), 1956; cover art Charles Copeland. First edition: Allen 1954

Wills, Thomas (William Ard): You’ll Get Yours (LL-129), 1956; cover art Harry Schaare. Reprints LB 87.

Goodis, David: Nightfall (LL-131), 1956. Reprints LB 133 with new title.

LION BOOKS

Roueche, Berton: Rooming House (LL-133), 1957; cover art Arthur Sarnoff. Reprints LB 141.

Williams, Ben Ames: Leave Her to Heaven (LL-136), 1956; cover art Clark Hulings. First edition: Houghton 1944

Hudiburg, Edward: Killer’s Game (LL-137), 1956; cover art Harry Schaare. PBO

Thompson, Jim: A Hell of a Woman (LL-138), 1956; cover art Morgan Kane. Reprints LB 215.

Thompson, Jim: The Kill-Off (LL-142), 1957; cover art William Rose. PBO

Jackson, Charles: Thread of Evil (LL-143), 1957; cover art Lou Marchetti. First edition: The Outer Edges, Rinehart 1948

Lorenz, Frederick (Lorenz Heller): Hot (LL-144), 1956; cover art Rudy Nappi. PBO

Friedman, Stuart: The Bedside Corpse (LL-148), 1957; cover art Robert Stanley. First edition: The Gray Eyes, Abelard 1955

Williams, Ben Ames: A Killer Among Us (LL-149), 1957; cover art Harry Schaare. First edition: The Silver Forest, Dutton 1926

Appel, Benjamin: Brain Guy (LL-151), 1957; cover art Mort Kunstler. Reprints LB 39.

Masur, Harold (ed.): Dolls Are Murder (LL-152), 1957; cover art Mort Kunstler. PBO

Paul, Gene: The Big Make (LL-158), 1957; cover art Robert Maguire. Reprints LB 104 with new title.

Lorenz, Frederick (Lorenz Heller): A Rage at Sea (LL-165), 1957; cover art James Bama. Reprints LB 152.

Roth, Holly: The Sleeper (LL-171), 1957; cover art Rudy Nappi. First edition: Simon 1955

Falstein, Louis: Slaughter Street (LL-172), 1957; cover art Robert Maguire. Reprints LB-151.

Editorial Comment:   I wish I had the space to show more of the covers here, but there are many, many more where these came from. Check out Bruce Black’s BookScans website, starting here.

REVIEWED BY WALTER ALBERT:         


CHAMPAGNE FOR CAESAR

CHAMPAGNE FOR CAESAR. United Artists, 1950. Ronald Colman, Vincent Price, Celeste Holm, Barbara Brittton, Art Linkletter, Byron Foulger, Ellye Marshall, LyleTalbot, John Eldridge, Vicki Raaf, Bess Flowers; Gabriel Heatter and George Fisher as themselves. Screenplay by Hans Jacoby and Fred Brady; music by Dimitri Tiomkin. Director: Richard Whorf. Shown at Cinecon 44, Hollywood CA, Aug-Sept 2008.

   Finally, an authentic star was showcased, the elegant Celeste Holm, playing a vamp (“Flame O’Neill”) who’s hired to distract genius TV quiz contestant Ronald Colman (“Beauregard Bottomley”) so that he will flub the answer to the final multi-million question that will bring down the skin lotion empire of a nutty magnate, played with hilarious and movie-stealing effect by the incomparable Vincent Price.

CHAMPAGNE FOR CAESAR

   This the kind of film you don’t see much of anymore, a comedy for adults, and one whose subjects are still relevant, corporate greed and inane TV shows. Art Linkletter is perfectly cast as the TV show host (in an engaging and sympathetic performance), and every performer is pitch-perfect, down to Beauregard’s pet parrot, voiced by the great Mel Blanc.

   After the screening, Holm arrived in a wheelchair, and was interviewed, with her much younger husband (maybe 40 years younger) in close attendance. She seemed frail but occasionally her voice became stronger, although she had to be constantly prompted by her husband, who filled in the details she was unable to remember.

   Later, my brother and I, having lunch next door at a restaurant, saw her wheeled in and she passed by our table, impeccably made up, her skin extraordinary youthful looking.

CHAMPAGNE FOR CAESAR