Hardboiled Treasures

paperbacksLook what turned up in the mail the other day! And it wasn’t even Christmas!

The Mighty Hocking had some duplicate hardboiled paperbacks lying about (as well as another Elmore Leonard western) and generously sent them on to me. Feast your eyes upon them.

These things are usually packaged in a tawdry way, often with ludicrous back cover copy that might have sold them in the old days but don’t do much to promote them to a modern audience because you have no idea how good the actual prose inside might be. Here’s an example, from the back of Million Dollar Murder:

A living dead man, tortured beyond recognition. A suitcase crammed with a million dollars in fresh, green currency. An eerie island. A sadistic millionaire. An exotic girl who knew all the answers, but whose lips didn’t look like they had been kissed as often as her manner indicated.

That’s what Sam sailed into. That, and murder: murder and more murder.

fc alex 2Now the odds are that if you’re like me you’ll go “yeah!” and think that might be fun. But if you don’t know how oversold and over the top a lot of this old back cover copy is you’d probably think I’d lost my mind or decide I had bad taste. Although maybe you already suspected that.

This weekend I also conquered Persia and moved on towards India courtesy of Field Commander: Alexander. It only took me a few hours, whereas it took him years. Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!

2 Comments on “Hardboiled Treasures

  1. You’re welcome but, honestly, I’d never have given them to you if i didn’t have other copies of my own.
    Hmmm.
    “These things are usually packaged in a tawdry way, often with ludicrous back cover copy that might have sold them in the old days but don’t do much to promote them to a modern audience because you have no idea how good the actual prose inside might be”

    I gotta edit that. Y’know, clean it up a bit. It should read…

    “These things are usually packaged in a magnificent way, often with sublime back cover copy that obviously sold them in the old days but don’t do much to promote them to a lamentable percentage of the modern audience because too many people don’t allow themselves to enjoy any aspect of fiction that isn’t utterly contemporary in sensibility and are thus missing out on some of finest genre fiction ever written. But that’s okay by me you sad, deprived people, because you’re only hurting yourselves, do you hear? Only hurting yourselves! And why should I care because I have a whole box of this stuff and you don’t! Nyah, nyah, nyah!”

    There. That’s much better.

  2. You are fortunate to have a Mighty Hocking in your life. And I prefer his version of the quoted text, no offense.

    I’m gonna have to track down some of those paperbacks.

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