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Fanzine focus: ‘Pulp Adventures’ #18

Posted by at 10:00 am Friday, September 25, 2015 in Adventure Pulps, Detective Pulps, Fanzines, Post-pulp, Pulps, Review, Western Pulps
Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Fanzine focus: ‘Pulp Adventures’ #18

"Pulp Adventures" #18Pulp Adventures #18 (Summer 2015), the fourth issue of the new version from Bold Venture Press, is now out. We get a collection of pulp fiction, along with some “post pulp fiction” taken from the various “men’s adventure” magazines that replaced the pulps, and some new stuff, all under a Norman Saunders crime cover. As I’ve noted in reviews of previous issues, we don’t have any similar series of pulp reprints out there now, and this is a great series.

The issue starts with an editorial that gives an overview of the men’s adventure magazines. There are several works out there that focus on them (even an ad for several of them). And we then get right to it with “MacDonald’s Nightmare Safari,” which gives the adventure of Jim MacDonald on his quest for diamonds in South America. But it’s not so simple as he must contend with dangerous natives, a man-eating dinosaur (or is it a giant lizard?), and a dame. Who wrote this tale for issue of Man’s Conquest in 1959 is unknown, as it was billed as written by Jim MacDonald himself! Thought it interesting that the issue’s cover was by George Gross, a long-time pulp cover artist who later did the great covers for paperback reprints of The Avenger and others.

Robert Leslie Bellem‘s Dan Turner, Hollywood Detective was a very long-running pulp detective, from the 1930s to the ’50s. Dan Turner was a product of the “spicy pulps” publisher, Trojan Publications. We get a story from the tale end of his run, “Model for a Corpse.”

A change of pace is a new tale, “New Blood,” by Gary Lovisi. All I’ll say is this is a short tale of a serial killer.

Next we get into earlier pulp with a tale by Stewart Sterling, which I know to be a pseudonym for Prentice Winchell. All I know of him are the later works he did on a few pulp heroes (like The Black Bat). This tale is from a 1938 issue of Detective Book from Fiction House. I thought it interesting that the cover of that issue was also by Norman Saunders. Bodies bloating down river put river-cop “Think-Quick” Koski on a case that will lead him to the “The Corpse Doctor.”

Going back even earlier, we get a tale by Marie Belloc Lowndes from McClure’s Magazine in 1911! A tale that seems more Victorian in style, it is about a mysterious and sinister lodger.

We then launch a new pulp adventurer by Richard Lupoff: Seamus “Splash” Shanahan. From his intro, we learn he is based on a comic-book character from Fawcett Comics named Lance O’Casey, a sailor in the South Pacific who has larger-than-life adventures, encountering pirates, lost cities, giant monsters, and more. Set in the 1920s, the first story is “Treasure of the Red-Robed Men.” A fun tale. The next issue will have another story. Should be great series.

Rounding out the issue is a short piece of fiction that looks at the world of pulps and radio by Paul Dale Anderson, and a western tale by Lauran Paine from the 1950s, along with an article about the author.

Again, we get another great volume. Each issue has come out on a regular basis, every three months. I look forward to the next one (and not just for the next Splash Shanahan tale). Every issue so far has had a Saunders cover, so will this continue?