Friday, February 14, 2014
Comic Cuts - 14 February 2014
How badly can the post office damage a book to make it unacceptable? I'm waiting for the money to be refunded and have ordered another copy of the book from a different dealer. But that's why the long-promised Dail Ambler article still isn't available.
The above pics are the covers to a pair of features on Edwin Self. The first one, The Big Panic: The Story of Edwin Self and Pedigree Books is a 5,000-worder about the publisher of Bart Banarto, Pete Costello and Jean-Paul Valois, three authors who landed Self in jail in 1954. Self subsequently set himself up as Pedigree Books and published books by Hal Ellson and Donald McCormick's The Hell-Fire Club, amongst many others.
The second feature, In Self Defence: The Obscenity of Pete Costello, is a 2,250-worder which takes a closer look at one of the books—the wonderfully titled Murder In Mink—that landed both its publisher (Self) and its author in jail. This is another piece that appeared in my out-of-print Mean Streetmaps collection.
I'll be setting up a page for these various Kindle articles shortly. In the meantime, you can find links to some of them at the Mean Streetmaps page on Bear Alley Books.
The one thing I've noticed on my little walks around town is that the roads seem to be breaking up. Most of it is cracked surfaces and minor scaring but a big hole has appeared in the middle of the road around the corner from us. It's about 5-6 cm deep and getting larger as cars slam into it.
And if you're wondering where this diatribe is going, it's going nowhere. I just happened to be out for a walk before sitting down to write this!
The next issues also promises to be a treat, with features on Alan Lee, John Vernon Lord, Bernie Fuchs and Leif Peng. In the meanwhile, here are a few pages from the current issue, which you can pick up directly from the Book Palace website, price £15 + p&p.
The Planetoid Peril is the third of three titles by George Sheldon Brown, two of which I ran last week. The cover artist was FTM—otherwise Terry Maloney. The other two are a random pair of scans also relating to Edwin Self, the first a one-shot gangster novel by the pseudonymous Boyd Nolan—I have no idea who wrote this one— and Christina Hole (1897-1985), who was not a pseudonym—she wrote books about British folk lore and the customs surrounding Christmas and Easter, edited books of folk tales from around the world and penned a number of books on superstitions, ghosts and witchcraft. Add in a fabulous Ron Turner cover and you have a nice, collectable book.