Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Monday, December 7, 2015


Some old westerns this week, plus a mystery novel by a writer who had her own mystery,
  • "Brett Austin" (Lee Floren), Rawhide Summons.  Western.  Rawhide Hinton summons his friend Sam Blanding to help him on his cattle ranch on California's San Rosita Island.  The two face a new kind of war with sheepmen -- a war where the cattle are rustled by boat and one where "Spanish love and hate were quick and hot."  This one is a 1950 paperback  reprint of a 1947 book.  Floren wrote some 300 books under 19 names during his career.  Rawhide Summons was the first of 20 books written under the Brett Austin pseudonym.
  • "John Benteen" (Ben Haas), Fargo:  The Wildcatters.  Western, the fifth in the series.  There were 23 or 24 books in the series, all but three written by Haas.  "Fargo kills but he isn't a killer.  He doesn't make a big thing out of it.  It's a job.  And he's good at it."
  • "Max Brand"  (Frederick Faust), The Bells of San Filipo, Bull Hunter, Golden Lightning, and The Longhorn Feud.  Westerns all. The first concerns a hidden stash of silver uncovered when an earthquake rips through a California ghost town; it was first published as a serial in Western Story Magazine in 1926.  The title character in Bull Hunter goes after a killer who had gunned down his uncle; this one first appeared in a 1921 Street & Smith magazine, don't know which one (can anyone help?).  In Golden Lightning, Lefty Bill Ranger is sent from Alaska to California to locate two men, not realizing that they were marked for death; from a 1931 Street & Smith magazine (again, I don't know which one).  The Longhorn Feud began with an argument over a steer and escalated to a battle that left fifteen men dead with more sure to die.  I don't know if this one had a magazine appearance before its 1933 book publication.
  • Joseph Gage, A Score to Settle, bound with Ray Hogan's Hangman's Valley.  An Ace Double western.  The first is "a novel of gold-hungry men and of a gunfighter who kept his back guarded and his hand close to his holster."  Hangman's Valley tells of a man framed for the death of a "hanging" judge's son.
  • Holly Roth, Too Many Doctors,  A CID Inspector Richard Medford mystery.  Roth, a former model, wrote 13 mystery novels (including four as "P. G. Ballard" and one as "P. J. Merrill"). Too Many Doctors (first published as Operation Doctors) is about a woman who falls off a boat and loses her memory.  Two years after this book was published, Roth fell off a yacht in the Mediterranean; her body was never recovered and her death remains shrouded in mystery.  She was 48.
  • Bertrand Shurtleff, Long Lash.  A teenage "Northern."  A pair of Alaskan gold prospectors are set upon by some neer-do-wells.  Heroic dogs strut their stuff.  And there are Mounties.  This 1949 paperback is one of the short-lived Pocket Book, Jr. line.

1 comment:

  1. I have a few old paperbacks of Max Brand I still have to read. It's been a long while since I read a western. Brand it is next.