Blog: Commentary from the den of a pulp super-fan

‘Blood ‘n’ Thunder Presents #3: Fighting Crime One Dime at a Time’

Posted by at 10:00 am Wednesday, October 18, 2017 in Dime Novels, Non-fiction, Pulps, References, Reprints, Review, The Shadow
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

‘Blood ‘n’ Thunder Presents #3: Fighting Crime One Dime at a Time’

Fighting Crime One Dime at a TimeEd Hulse and his Murania Press have put out a third Blood ‘n’ Thunder Presents volume, this time focused on the pulp heroes: Fighting Crime One Dime at a Time.

(And, yes, there is a second volume in the series, The Penny-a-Word Brigade. I just haven’t gotten that one, and when I do I’ll post a review.)

As a pulp-hero fan, I recommend this volume, which has a whole set of articles on pulp heroes, all reprinted from previous issues of Blood ‘n’ Thunder. We also get a couple of pulp-hero comic stories from the golden age. Now, these are not your standard overview articles (though there are a couple of those). Several delve into some interesting topics, some have helped me with some of my postings here, and all are written by several pulp historians.

We get articles on many of the major heroes, and a couple of obscure ones.

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‘The Greystoke Legacy Under Siege’

Posted by at 10:00 am Wednesday, October 11, 2017 in Edgar Rice Burroughs, New Pulp, Review, Tarzan
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

‘The Greystoke Legacy Under Siege’

'The Greystoke Legacy Under Siege'I have previously posted about the pulp works of Edgar Rice Burroughs. His most well-known work is Tarzan, who has spawned a wide range of works, though a character whom I never got into, at least in prose.

Burroughs established ERB Inc. to maintain ownership of his works. And it’s strange or sad that while they have allowed new stories of his characters to appear in movies, TV, radio, comics, and comic strips, new prose works have been few and far between. And in a few cases, permission has been withdrawn for works in progress.

Tarzan has had but a few authorized novels since Burroughs passed away. That seemed to change recently when Will Murray was allowed to write a new Tarzan novel, Return to Pal-ul-don, under the heading of “The Wild Adventures of Tarzan.” I thought this would lead to further new Tarzan novels from Altus Press (and Murray). So was confused when I did see a listing of further new novels, not from Altus Press, but though ERB Inc. These would be under the new heading of “The Wild Adventures of Edgar Rice Burroughs” and looks to include more than just Tarzan.

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R.J. MacCready, a new science-thriller hero

Posted by at 10:00 am Wednesday, October 4, 2017 in Pulps, Review, Thriller
Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

R.J. MacCready, a new science-thriller hero

'Hell's Gate'As a fan of techno-thrillers, I am always on the lookout for new and interesting characters in this genre. I happened to stumble upon a new character that has two books out already. The second book first appeared in hardcover, so I guess the first one was successful enough to go quickly to hardback. Most new authors have to have several books out before going to hardback originals.

This new character is R.J. MacCready, created by Bill Schutt and J.R. Finch.

MacCready, a captain in the U.S. Army in the first book (not certain if so in the second), is a zoologist. And the books are set toward the end of World War II and just after. While technology isn’t the main thrust of this series, science (and some speculative science) is, similar to the works of Rollins, Gibbons, and a few others.

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Francis Stevens and ‘The Citadel of Fear’

Posted by at 10:00 am Monday, October 2, 2017 in Fantasy Pulp, Reprints, Review, Science Fiction Pulps
Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Francis Stevens and ‘The Citadel of Fear’

'The Argosy' (Sept. 14, 1918)An interesting book I picked up recently was Francis Stevens’ The Citadel of Fear. Reprinted by Armchair Fiction as part of their Lost World-Lost Race series, this novel was originally serialized in The Argosy in 1918.

This particular edition had a short select of artwork from her other works (covers of their appearances in pulp magazines), as well as the wrap-around artwork for the Paperback Library reprint of Citadel. It also had a short bio of Stevens and it was interesting.

Francis Stevens was really Gertrude Barrows Bennett (1884–1948), an early author of fantasy and science fiction that some call the “woman who invented dark fantasy.” She actually dropped out of school after the eighth grade and later became a stenographer. Her first published work of fiction was a short story “The Curious Experience of Thomas Dunbar,” published in The Argosy in 1904. She later married and had a daughter, but her explorer husband died on an expedition. During World War I, her father died, and Gertrude had to help support her invalid mother.

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‘Napoleon’s Vampire Hunters’

Posted by at 10:00 am Wednesday, September 27, 2017 in French pulp, New Pulp, Review
Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

‘Napoleon’s Vampire Hunters’

'Napoleon's Vampire Hunters'Frank Schildiner is one of several New Pulp authors who have worked with a variety of characters. I have reviewed some of his past works (a new Thunder Jim Wade novella) and his several short stories in Tales of the Shadowmen, most dealing with Jean Kariven (an archaeologist who has gotten involved with an intergalactic war between two races).

For Black Coat Press he has done two novels using Gouroull, an evil version of Frankenstein’s monster. Napolean’s Vampire Hunters is his third, and works with a new set of characters: the vampires created by Paul Feval.

Paul Feval may be best known for creating the crime novel series dealing with the Black Coats, most of which are available from Black Coat Press and which others have made use of in new stories. Maybe lesser known are his trio of novels dealing with vampires, which are also available from Black Coat Press. Written before Dracula, they were probably written in response to a play by Dumas also written in response to Polidori‘s The Vampyre.

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‘The Savage Dyaries’

Posted by at 10:00 am Wednesday, September 20, 2017 in Doc Savage, Fanzines, Non-fiction, Reprints, Review
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

‘The Savage Dyaries’

'The Savage Dyaries'The Savage Dyaries is a new collection of articles saved from pulp fanzines. In this case, Doc Savage articles written by Dafydd Neal Dyar that ran from 1979 to 1984.

Many of these fanzines are now hard to find, and so it’s great they are brought together for a new generation to enjoy.  Dyar has an almost encyclopedic knowledge of Doc, and can be counted on to provide such info in on-line discussions on Facebook.

All the articles here have been extensively footnoted (in a few cases the footnotes are longer then the articles themselves). As this is marked “Volume 1,” so hopefully at some point we’ll see a volume 2, maybe a volume of his non-Doc articles or later Doc articles?

So what does DND have for us?

• A couple of articles on John Sunlight that speculate on his parentage.

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