Monday, October 23, 2017

Check Force: The Peking Plot by Ralph Hayes

 China was the oldest civilization in the world and was about to become extinct

An angry Chinese general, stewing over land currently controlled by the Soviets but, in his opinion, historically belonging to the Chinese, has a plan for taking back the region by force. This plan is backed solidly by Force III, knowing that such a conflict would soon escalate into war and could even extend to a World War.

20th Century Warlord 
The revolution in China was not over. General Sheng-Tse was clawing his way into power, pledged to recover lands lost to the Russians. And the war like general was backed by Force III, a secret organization dedicated to world destruction.  

Force III
Put an entire arsenal at his disposal, knowing the Chinese general would suck both Russia and the U.S. into the final war.

Chane: a fugitive CIA agent and
Karlov: a disaffected Russian spy

They were the only ones who could stop the coming crisis. For while the world celebrated detente, it would soon be mourning a devastated planet. 

Printing History
Written by Ralph E Hayes

Manor Books

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Marked For Murder by Brett Halliday

When a crime wave grips Miami, Mike Shayne comes home to fight

Robert McGinnis Cover
 In the city room of the Courier, a reporter blocks out the clatter of typewriters to tell Miami the truth. In the past week, three murders have been committed in Miami Beach, and Timothy Rourke is the only person who sees the connection. As the mayor and the chief of police deny rumors of a crime wave, Rourke hollers from page one: Organized crime has taken over Miami, and the bloodshed has only just begun. Rourke is beaten to a pulp for exposing the mob's dirty dealings, and then he discovers a hot-eyed blonde in his apartment packing a .32. The situation is spinning out of control, and only one man can save the city from itself: Mike Shayne. He left Miami for New Orleans after the death of his beloved, and he will return with all the fury of an avenging angel. 

 Bonus Covers

Robert McGinnis Cover
Robert McGinnis Cover
Printing History
Written by Davis Dresser (1904-1977) 

Dodd Mead & Company 
Dell Publishing Company
#222  1948
D291 1959 
#5386 June 1968
#5386 1970

Originally published as “The Vanishing Blonde,” Mystery Book Magazine, December 1945

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

The Assassination Bureau, Ltd by Jack London and Robert L. Fish

A secret organization, The Assassination Bureau, Ltd., headed by Ivan Dragomiloff,  will assassinate evildoers, for example, corrupt police commissioners, legislators, politicians, etc.; but will not act unless convinced that the target truly is worthy of assassination. In a twist of fate, Dragomiloff finds himself pitted against the secret assassination agency he founded.

 Bonus Covers

 Printing History
Written by Jack London (1876-1916)
based on an unfinished novel
Finished by Robert Lloyd Fish (1912-1981)


The Film
Oliver Reed as Ivan Dragomiloff
Diana Rigg as Sonya Winter
Telly Savalas as Lord Bostwick
Curd J├╝rgens as General von Pinck
Philippe Noiret as Monsieur Lucoville
Warren Mitchell as Herr Weiss
Beryl Reid as Madame Otero 
Clive Revill as Cesare Spado
Kenneth Griffith as Monsieur Popescu
Vernon Dobtcheff as Baron Muntzof
Annabella Incontrera as Eleanora Spado
Jess Conrad as Angelo
George Coulouris as Swiss Peasant

Directed by
Basil Dearden

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Nice Girls Finish Last by Sparkle Hayter

Robin Hudson, a reporter for the All News Network, overcomes a loathsome boss and a dead-end career when she discovers that the murder of her gynecologist may be connected to random shootings at her network. 

At 37 with one filed marriage and several lousy dates behind her, Robin Hudson is working on a new attitude/ A positive Mental Attitude. Sure she will still be toiling away in the tabloid Special Reports Unit at the All News Network for her loathsome boss Jerry Spurdle. But amidst the cutbacks she thinks a good attitude might improve her karma. Besides, she's added to her personal defense system a new weapon. A hot glue gun with two settings, steam and spray. So what could go wrong? Then her gynecologist is murdered, and her boss sends her to investigate a link with the S&M sex club underworld. In the meantime, someone is taking potshots at ANN's male talent. Are the shootings connected to the murder of the doctor? To Robin? Her Positive Mental Attitude hanging by a thread, robin must solve the mystery, or she may never have another date.

Printing History
Written by Sparkle Hayter

Penguin Books
ISBN 14-024516
April 1997

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Bloodtide by Robert Kalish

Murder Off The Maine Coast Plunges Skipper Gould Into The Hot Waters Of Atomic Espionage

His Fighting Instincts Kept Him Alive In 'Nam. Now He Needs Them Again For Another Deadly Mission...At Home.
The woman with the despair in her eyes wanted Skipper Gould to find her husband. He had taken his lobster boat out to sea one chill Maine morning and disappeared. No boat. No body. No trace. Skip[per was the editor of a small town newspaper, now. But the woman came to him because of what he had been. A Covert U.S. agent in Southeast Asia. A highly skilled fighter in the deadliest combat unit America had ever trained. Skipper's instincts warned him that his search for the missing fisherman was sweeping him towards a giant maelstrom of evil and violence. An international conspiracy swirling around a nuclear power plant on a quiet Maine cove. A massive anitnuke protest march, and a beautiful organizer whose luscious body could stop traffic. Whose secrets could stop Skipper...dead.

Printing History
Written by Robert Kalish

Avon Books
ISBN 380-89521
February 1985

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Stand In For Sin by Marc Brody

A Crime Reporter's Inside Story

Trapeze artist, Hilary Carver got a knife in his back and he was found in the queerest set up for he he had ever came across. What was the mystery hoodoo haunting Darbin's circus? Why did several animals die? How did one go about finding a killer who had no name or or no face? Carver's foster daughter lovely Lauren Wallace pleaded to find the killer. Basso the Clown offered his help. But Marc could have done without him or his queer dwarf, Nahume. Drago Francesco, the voluptuous snake charmer, had a way with snakes, but when a deadly fer-de-lance was found in Brody's bed, he did not want her around anymore. As for Oscar Zimmerman, the loin tamer, and Khoklov, the strong man, Marc could live a lifetime without them! But Yorty, the Runyon type ex criminal, took care of him because he was his "brudder". Phyllis  Vincent, the stripper proved one final thing.....

Printing History
Written by W. H. Williams

Horwitz Publications Inc

Unnumbered Series
September 1956

1st Collector's Edition
June 1958

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

The Saint Sees It Through by Leslie Charteris

Simon Templar Fights An International Dope Ring

The Saint pits himself against a lovely lady, 
and unflappable psychiatrist, 
and a maze of murder.

The Saint, who sometimes travels under the name Simon Templar, collides with the weirdest group of sinister characters he's ever met, including a mysterious European psychiatrist, a monstrous glandular freak, and a peculiar lady poet. Something sinister linked them all together, and Simon has to find out what it was. The key might be the suave shrink. Then again, it might be Avalon Dexter, the sexy singer with the sincere smile. And the gift for getting The Saint tangled up in the murderous riddle.

Printing History
Written by Leslie Charles Bowyer-Yin (1907-1993)

The Crime Club (USA)

Hodder and Stoughton  (UK)

Avon Publications, Inc
First Printing May 1951
Second Printing November 1954

Curtis Books

This was the final full-length novel featuring Templar to be solely written by Charteris, as the author chose to concentrate on short stories and novella-length Saint stories hereafter.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Midnight Never Comes by Jack Higgins

A swift and deadly tale of intrigue and espionage set against the backdrop of the Scottish Highlands

Paul Chavasse had everything a good agent needed. Flair, ingenuity, a superb intelligence, common sense, plus a willingness to kill. Now he was part of the walking wounded. So badly hurt on his last mission they figured he was through. But Paul was far from through. A few months of special training and he was ready to take on one of the most dangerous men of the world. Max Donner, a millionaire with his own private army and a plan for stealing Britain's newest secret missile. Chavasse was ready for Max Donner. But he was not ready for Donner's beautiful stepdaughter, Asta. 

Printing History
written by Harry Patterson (1929-)

1966 by Martin Fallon

Fawcett Gold Medal Books
February 1975

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

The Corpse Came Calling by Brett Halliday

Mike Shayne is accused of homicide after a dying man stumbles into his office

Robert McGinnis Cover
A corpse dropped in for cocktails 
Mike Shayne was more than a little disturbed. The police were not pleased either. How, they asked, could a man with three bullets in his chest drive to Mike's apartment, cross the lobby, take the elevator, and die only after he had reached Mike's door.  A good question and Shayne had to find an answer. Especially since it seemed so obvious that the principal cause of death had to be.... Mike Shayne.

Printing History
Written by Davis Dresser (1904-1977)

Dodd, Mead, and Company

Dell Publishing Company
April 1947

September 1949
March 1955
January 1961

March 1964

Bonus Cover

Thursday, August 31, 2017

The Sky Block by Steve Frazee

They were out to kill him before he could find the secret weapon that would destroy America

The secret weapon of an unseen enemy.....
Vencel had known the mountain when he was a boy. He had climbed it, hunter on it, fished in its streams. But when he cane back, he found the mountain a place of swiftly spilling blood and sudden death. Vencel turned into an angry, vengeful man, and he swore to flush out the terrifying menace of Blue Peak. But no man alone could fight the barbarous enemy hidden deep inside the mountain. So Vencel joined the team of army brass, FBI agents, and the nation's top scientists. All of them caught up in a desperate hunt for the most devastating weapon ever devised for the destruction of mankind.....

Robert Mcguire
Printing History
Written by Steve Frazee

Rinehart & Company, Inc

Lion Library 

Pyramid Books

Mayflower Dell