Just finished reading Stark House’s excellent Hardboiled, Noir and Gold Medals. It collects Rick Ollerman’s essays about the authors of the paperback original era, along with some additional background material written specifically for the volume. A big part of the Stark House Press mission is to return the best books of the PBO era to print. Ollerman’s book explains why. It’s overflowing with background on the writers and their works. It’s meticulously researched and dangerous to book collectors who won’t be able to resist adding even more to their bulging libraries after reading it.
Next in my reading queue: Essays on crime fiction writers from the ‘50s through the ‘90s.
Bruno Fischer’s The Bleeding Scissors was first published in 1948. It was a issued as both a paperback book by Signet (#1256) and as a digest by The American Mercury (AM) as Bestseller Mystery B106.
The Bestseller Mystery (BM) edition sports a cover design by George Salter and the indicia states “This mystery has not been cut.” The type is set in a two-column layout, somewhat unusual but not unheard of for the title.
The final two pages of its 128 total feature an “announcement” for other Mercury digests, The Pinball Murders edition of A Jonathan Press Mystery (JPM) by Thomas Black and They Can Only Hang You Once by Dashiell Hammett, part of the Mercury Mystery (MM) series; and a list of recent editions for all three of AM’s titles (MM, BM & JPM).