Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

2014 USA Fiction Challenge: Alaska

Alaska is the place for our visit in the 2014 USA Fiction Challenge.

Birds Of Prey by J. A. Jance

A J.P. Beaumont Mystery

After 20 years in the Seattle Police Department, J.P. Beaumont has been put out to pasture. The hero of 14 J.A. Jance mystery novels has called it quits after the murder of his partner. But if Beau is out to pasture, what is he doing out at sea? Beau is on the Starfire Breeze, an Alaskan cruise ship, for one reason and one reason only,  to serve as his newlywed grandmother's chaperon. He's also getting mistaken for a gold-digging gigolo by a band of middle-aged divorc√©es, led by one Margaret Featherman, who carries a grudge against her ex-husband, successful neurosurgeon Harrison Featherman. Is it just a coincidence that Margaret and Harrison are on the same cruise ship? Or that Margaret is doing her best to seduce one of her husband's patients, who in turn has a crush on the good doctor's daughter? But the biggest potential coincidence of all is a horrific one, when Margaret is pushed overboard into the icy Alaskan waters. The only witness to the murder is an Alzheimer's victim. But when Beau starts poking around he discovers that Harrison was himself the target of a conservative medical ethics group with a deadly agenda. As the ship moves slowly amidst the icebergs, Beau finds out that there's a lot hidden under these particular waters.

 Printing History
Written by Judith Ann Jance (1944- )

William Morrow and Company, Inc
copyright  March 2001

The Hearst Corporation
Avon Books, Inc
ISBN 380 71654
January 2002

Monday, October 28, 2013

Prison of Secrets (1997)

Based on a true story and focuses on a female prison inmate 
who fights for women's rights while still in jail

Lynn Schaffer is a loving mother and wife. She gets arrested for a crime she did not realize she had committed and does not take the arrest seriously at first. Viewing herself as innocent, she goes against the advice of her lawyer to take a plea-bargain. Instead she opts for a trial, coming as a complete surprise to her, she is convicted and receives the maximum sentence of 10 years, is sent to a women's prison. She leaves behind her husband Larry and daughter Carey. While in prison, she has difficulty adjusting to not having any privacy and having to deal with drug addicts and prostitutes. But soon finds out that the prison is corrupt, with Sergeant Ed Crang and other prison guards often sexually abusing inmates.

Stephanie Zimbalist (1956-) as Lynn Schaffer
Finola Hughes (1959-) as Angie
Gary Frank (1950-) as Larry Schaffer
Rusty Schwimmer (1962-)as Carla
Dan Lauria (1947-) as Sergeant Ed Crang
Kimberly Russell as Frannie
Stephanie Sawyer as Carey Schaffer
Directed by Fred Gerber

Gary Frank appears in three episodes in the TV series Remington Steele

Saturday, October 26, 2013

To Kill A Mocking Bird by Harper Lee

Today we will start the 2014 USA Fiction Challenge. 

First off there are a few rules:
Read just one novel from each state
Any genre (I will mainly be in the mystery or spy area)
The Challenge is being managed by Kerri and Col over at COL'S CRIMINAL LIBRARY

 So to start ourselves off with the state of Alabama.

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
I read this book in high school and also saw the film some years ago.

Tomboy Scout Finch comes of age in a small Alabama town during a crisis in 1935. She admires her father Atticus, how he deals with issues of racism, injustice, intolerance and bigotry, his courage and his love.

The place is Maycomb, Alabama. The finalist for the Most Boring Town in America. Few people move in, fewer move out, so it's just the same families doing the same things for generation after generation. Families like the Finches: Scout, her brother Jem, and their father Atticus. Every summer Scout and Jem are joined by Dill Harris, who shares their obsession with the local haunted house, the Radley Place, and the boogeyman who lives there, Boo Radley.  

Print Version
Written by Nelle Harper Lee (1926-)
  J. B. Lippincott & Co. 1960

Movie Version (1962)
Directed by Robert Mulligan (1925-2008)
Gregory Peck (1916-2003) as Atticus Finch
Mary Badham (1952-) as Jean Louise "Scout" Finch
Phillip Alford (1948-)as Jeremy Atticus "Jem" Finch
Robert Duvall (1931-) as Arthur "Boo" Radley

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 1961.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Last Cop Out by Mickey Spillane

A story of a cop shoved off the force for being set up years ago, 
then brought back once a bizarre series of gangland slayings has started. 

Gill Burke is the framed cop pulled back into action to figure out the mess. The killings grow more bizarre and it seems that different people are committing them, even though the were all top-echelon mobsters. This causes friction within the mob itself with everyone thinking that one of their own is behind the operation. Four of them are introduced with, each with his own agenda, including Papa Menes, an old-time mob guy who thinks he has it figured out, and Marc Selby, an up-and-comer who has his own theories and is relishing in them. The other two are more of the enforcer types who meet an end that one would not wish on anyone. Be forewarned: There is a lot of  killing that will make everyone cringe. It’s told so graphically as one should get the shivers just thinking about it. While all this is going on, Burke is reinvestigating the case for which he was framed. It seems there is a connection between it all.

Printing History
Written by Mickey Spillane (1918-2006)

New American Library
Signet Books
ISBN 525 14353
January 1973

Mickey's wife Sherri posed for the cover

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Pressure Point by Jack Garside

A Quiet Seaside Village Hides a Soviet Blueprint For Destruction!
George Gross Cover
Killmaster #230
An AXE agent has been killed in Scotland, blasted off a cliff in a small seaside village. Rumors of Russian activities in the community have reached the ears of Nick Carter "Killmaster." And someone's going to pay for it, in blood.  It's a dirty job, even for Agent N3. The Soviets mean business. They're gathering forces in the deadliest of power plays. A fleet of nuclear armed mini-subs. And soon they will bring the West to its knees.

Nick Carter "Killmaster's" mission: Infiltrate and destroy!

Printing History
Written by Jack Garside

Berkley Publishing Group
Jove Books
Published by arrangement with The Conde Nast Publications, Inc.
ISBN 515 09168
October 1987

Monday, October 21, 2013

Hip Pocket Sleaze by John Harrison

The Lurid World Of Vintage Adult Paperbacks

The Rise of The Sleazy Paperback

Charting the rise of sleazy pulp fiction and questionable nonfiction, from the 1940's onwards. Hip Pocket Sleaze examines the erotic and enduringly shocking works of an era when print was both king and kinky. Publishing houses such as New English Library (UK), Horwitz (Australia) and Greenleaf (US) could barely meet the demand of a public bent on skinheads, witchcraft, giant crabs, Nazis, and smut of every shape and form.

Printing History
Written by John Harrison


Design and layout by
David Kerekes

I am currently recuperating from hernia surgery and the posts might be few and far between or the next couple of weeks

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Wreath For Rebecca by Carter Brown

With her stems she expected orchids...then came the "personal delivery".....

Rebecca was a magician and someone had plans for her to do the disappearing act. She asked Bill Cameron to protect her. Brother, when Bill met her sister he needed some protection himself. Bill had to get away from her before the curvacious magician went up in smoke. So there Bill was in a house of screwballs trying to find out just who had ordered the coffin.

Printing History
Written by Alan G Yates (1923-1985)
Horwitz Publications Inc.
Novel Series April 1954
Second Collectors' Series Volume 1 #10 1957
w/Perfumed Poison and Goodknife Sweetheart
Numbered Series #41 June 1957
Reprint By Demand Series #20 May 1960
Other Editions
En krans til Rebecca  (Winther 1965, 1979, Denmark) 
En Krans At Rebecca (Wennerberg 1965, Sweden) 
Le glas pour Rebecca (Gallimard 1974, France) 
Kalma Kolkuttaa (Valpas-Mainos 1963, Finland)


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Goldeneye (1995)

Jame Bond 007

GoldenEye (1995) is the 17th James Bond Spy film. Pierce Brosnan stars as the fictional MI6 spy Jame Bond. Martin Campbell directed and was the first film in the series not to take story elements from the works of novelist ian Fleming.  In the film Bond fights to prevent an arms syndicate from using the GoldenEye satellite weapon against London in order to cause a global financial meltdown.


Pierce Brosnan  
Sean Bean 
Izabella Scorupco  
Famke Janssen 
Joe Don Baker 
Judi Dench 
Gottfried John 
Robbie Coltrane 
Desmond Llewelyn 
Samantha Bond 
Minnie Driver 

Directed by
Martin Campbell

Sunday, October 13, 2013

USA Fiction Challange

In 2014 I will attempt to complete the USA Fiction Challenge

I will highlight a different state each week. Beginning with the state of Alabama.

More details to follow as we get closer to 2014.

  1. ALABAMA: To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  2. ALASKA 
  10. FLORIDA:
  11. GEORGIA 
  12. HAWAII 
  13. IDAHO 
  15. INDIANA 
  16. IOWA 
  17. KANSAS
  20. MAINE 
  26. MISSOURI: 
  27. MONTANA 
  29. NEVADA 
  33. NEW YORK: 
  36. OHIO
  37. OKLAHOMA: 
  38. OREGON 
  44. TEXAS: 
  45. UTAH 
  46. VERMONT 
  51. WYOMING 


Back when I was living in Denver Colorado (before moving off to college), the main airport was Stapleton International Airport from 1929 until 1995. I remember flying for the first time out of Stapleton on Continental Airlines bound for St Louis. Now this is the only standing reminder.  Denver International Airport (DIA) took over from Stapleton.

June 1931 photo of Amelia Earhart & Frederick Bonfils
A 1944 aerial view of B-17 bombers parked behind the Stapleton terminal

 British Airways Concorde taxiing in December 1978
On February 27, 1995, the last commercial flight left Stapleton. A Continental Airlines flight to London Gatwick. Later that evening Stapleton was closed and a massive convoy of all the airport vehicles headed for the new Denver International Airport, which opened the following morning.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Writing The Modern Mystery

Writing The Modern Mystery

Printing History
written by Barbara Norville

Writer's Digest Books

Monday, October 7, 2013

Freedom Express by Mack Maloney

He Is the Last Hope Of Ravaged America!

American Armageddon 
Decimated in a deadly run of treachery and deceit, the United States is united no longer. But out of a war blackened landscape emerges the brilliant ace fighter pilot Hawk Hunter, a lone warrior on the bloody road of retribution, battling to keep the spirit of America alive in the hearts of his countrymen. While the rebirth of freedom has come to most of the American continent, much of the western lands remain under the savage control of the Knights of the Twisted Cross, a power hungry neo-Nazi army with plans to carve out a piece of the once proud nation for themselves. The answer to this threat to freedom, a Supertrain, literally miles long, carrying troops, artillery and missiles, to slash through and reclaim the occupied territory. Guarding the skies above the Supertrain is Hawk Hunter, who has traded in his sleek F-16 for a souped up Harrier jump jet. But as the Supertrain thunders across western plains and deserts, Hawk Hunter can see that resistance from the fanatical neo-Nazi grows stronger. And as the train hurtles toward the yawning abyss of the Grand Canyon, Hunter suddenly knows that an American Armageddon is about to unfold on a parched and arid battlefield that will soon run red with blood!

Wingman #7

Printing History
written by Brian Kelleher
copyright 1990

Kensington Publishing Corp
Zebra Books
ISBN 8217 2892
2nd Printing April 1990

Saturday, October 5, 2013

The Temptress (Revised) by Carter Brown

She's a saucy seductress worth three million dollars

A good catch for a killer.

Grant Roberts Cover
        Murder is just a pretty word to:

The teen-age heiress who prefers ex-cons to college boys.
The society mother who wants the police to lock up her wayward daughter on a morals charge.
The millionaire who buys the favors of high-school girls.
The piano player who runs a profitable business on the side.
Ron Lesser Cover
  But to Police Lieutenant Al Wheeler murder means business. Dirty business. One of this lethal crew bashed in the skull of a peeping private eye and Al is out for blood. A killer's blood!

Printing History
Written by Alan G Yates (1923-1985)
Horwitz Publications Inc.
Numbered Series #87 May 1960
Long Story Magazine #16 November 1960
International Edition Series #19 June 1962

Bolinda Publishing 
 Audio Book
New American Library
Signet Books
S1817 July 1960
S2898 1966

New English Library
Four Square Books
#970 (1964)
#1743 (February 1967)

More Covers 

New English Library

New American Library

Horwitz Publications


Friday, October 4, 2013

Terms of Vengeance by Jack Canon

Agent N3 Take On A Terrorist Death Squad
George Gross Cover
 A summit of world leaders could bring lasting peace to the Middle East. And it's Nick Carter's mission to insure the safety of the participants. But Ja'il Rahman, a deadly assassin for a radical PLO spinster group, has pledged a bloody campaign of terror. He's set his cross hairs on the gathering heads of state in a violent conspiracy that stretches from Jordon to Luxembourg. War is one bullet away as Nick unravels an international web of lethal intrigue, Soon it's Nick Carter "Killmaster" against a murderous fanatic in the center of a terrorist blood storm.........

Killmaster #229

Printing History
Written by Jack Canon

Berkley Publishing Group
Jove Books
Published by arrangement with The Conde Nast Publications, Inc.
ISBN 515 09214
September 1987

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Secrets Of A Private Eye by Irwin Blye and Ardy Friedberg

Fascinating at it is informative
Private investigator Irwin Blye reveals the secrets that made him a legend. Step-by-step, he shows how he gathers his information, from all-night stakeouts to getting confidential data from government agencies and private corporations.

  Printing History
written by Irwin Blye and Ardy Friedberg

 Henry Holt & Co 
BCE (January 1987)

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Detectionary by Mill Roseman

A biographical dictionary of leading characters in mystery fiction

Including famous and little known sleuths, 
their helpers,
rogues both heroic and sinister, 
and some of their most memorable adventures, 
as recounted in novels, short stories, and film

Printing History
Mill Roseman (August 14, 1921-September 27, 2003)

 copyright 1971
Hammermill Paper Company, Inc

The Overlook Press
BCE Edition  June 1977
ISBN 879 51041

Compiled by
 Otto Penzler
Chris Steinbrunner
Charles Shibuk
Marvin Lachman
Francis M Nevins, Jr

Edited by
Otto Penzler
Chris Steinbrunner
Marvin Lachman