The Digest Enthusiast


Ed McBain’s Mystery Book No. 3

Ed McBain’s Mystery Book No. 3

Jack Seabrook takes a close look at Ed McBain’s Mystery Book No. 3 in the current issue (No. 14) of The Digest Enthusiast. Here’s a preview:

Ed McBain’s Mystery Magazine is a standard-sized digest (5-1/4” x 7-5/8”), with color front and back covers and black and white interiors. It was published by Pocket Books in New York and ran only three issues. The first two are dated 1960, while the third is dated 1961. The information in issue number three says it was published bi-monthly, so perhaps the first two issues came out in late 1960 and the third in early 1961. Issue three runs 148 pages, including covers. Ed McBain is listed as the editor and Robert Goodney is listed as the managing editor, so it may be the case that McBain was a figurehead and Goodney put the magazine together.”

Jack’s piece is loaded with background information and a complete synopsis of the issue. Artwork includes cover images as well as several interior illustrations from the digest.

Terror Detective Story Magazine

Terror Detective Story Magazine Oct. 1956

Terror Detective was the brain-child of uber-publisher Everett “Busy” Arnold, the man responsible for syndicating Will Eisner’s “The Spirit” and launching one of the first comic book publishers, Quality Comics, home of such classics as Plastic Man and Blackhawk.”

For more background and a symopsis of every story that appeared over Terror Detective Story Magazine’s four-issue run, see Peter Enfantino’s analysis in The Digest Enthusiast No. 14, now on sale.
14C (fullcolor print) $20.00 from Lulu.com and Amazon.com
14BW (b&w print) $12 from Amazon.com
14 (full color digital) $4.99 from Amazon.com and Magzter.com

The Digest Enthusiast No. 14C

20 Million Miles to Earth, the Novel

20 Million Miles to Earth, the Novel

“As Shuster and Bailey rush to investigate, they find a strange reptilitan creature, eight feet tall with a prehensile tail. Dead—apparently electrocuted by the relatively low voltage of their power lines.”

Henry Slesar (1927–2002) was a prolific author, scriptwriter, and copywriter, famous for his twist endings. He is created for coining the phrase “coffee break” during his early years as an advertising copywriter. His first fiction sale was “The Brat” (Imaginative Tales Sept. 1953).

Two years later he wrote the novelization of the Columbia Pictures’ classic 20 Million Miles to Earth for Ziff-Davis in the the one-shot digest, Amazing Stories Science Fiction Novel.

Read the complete synopsis of Slesar’s novel, with highlights of the differences between film and novel in The Digest Enthusiast No. 14. Available now:
14C (full color print)–$20.00 from Lulu.com and Amazon.com
14BW (b&w print)–$12 from Amazon.com
14 Kindle (full color digital)–$4.99 from Amazon.com
14 digital (full color digital)–$4.99 from Magzter.com

The Digest Enthusiast No. 14C

The Digest Enthusiast No. 14

The Digest Enthusiast No. 14C

The latest issue of The Digest Enthusiast is now available. This time there are two print editions, one in color and one is black-and-white.

14C is $20.00 from Lulu.com and Amazon.com
14BW is $12 from Amazon.com
14 Kindle is $4.99 from Amazon.com
14 digital is $4.99 from Magzter.com
Coming soon select booksellers including Bud’s Art Books, DreamHaven Books, Mike Chomko Books, Modern Age Books, Barnes & Noble (online), and eBay.

The Digest Enthusiast [#14 June 2021] ed. Richard Krauss (Larque Press, $20 (color), $12 (b&w), $4.99 (digital) 160pp, digest)
3 • Contents Page
4 • News Digest • various • gp
20 • Ed McBain’s Mystery Book No. 3 • Jack Seabrook • ar
30 • Assisted Dying • Jack Seabrook • ss
47 • Zip! • Bob Vojtko • ct
48 • Startling Mystery Stories No. 1 • Richard Krauss • rv
54 • Manhunt 1955 part two • Peter Enfantino • sz
66 • At the Vanguard…But, Not for Long • Vince Nowell, Sr. • ar
74 • The Dark City Crime & Mystery Magazine Vol. 6 No. 1 • Richard Krauss • rv
78 • Ocean De Ville • Robert Snashall • ss
88 • Amazing Stories Science Fiction Novel: 20 Million Miles to Earth • Richard Krauss • sz
110 • Dedication: Paul D. Marks • ms
112 • The End of Wonder • Ward Smith & Vince Nowell, Sr. • rv
116 • The Haunt of Horror • Richard Krauss • ar
130 • Gnoll Attack [Buckthorn Burrough] • John Kuharik • ss; illustrated by Michael Neno
142 • Terror Detective Story Magazine • Peter Enfantino. ar
159 • Opening Lines • ms

The Digest Enthusiast No. 14 back cover

Larque Press website

Contents formatted for inclusion in Phil Stephensen-Payne’s Galatic Central reference website.
FictionMags Index Family Item Types & Other Abbreviations key.

The Digest Enthusiast No. 13

The Digest Enthusiast No. 13

The Digest Enthusiast No. 13 is now available in print, kindle and Magzter editions—all in full color.

Emily Hockaday

• Behind the scenes at Analog and Asimov’s with writer, poet, and managing editor Emily Hockaday.

Manhunt 1955 part one

• A brand new installment of Peter Enfantino’s popular series on Manhunt—1955 part one.

Looking for Leo Marr

Jack Seabrook investigates the mysterious true crime reports of Leo Marr for Mystery Book Magazine.

Falcon Books

Gary Lovisi reveals the highly collectible digest paperbacks from Falcon Books.

Digest S&SF Classics

Steve Carper uncovers the genre giants of Digest Fantasy & Science Fiction Classics.

Robert A.W. Lowndes

Vince Nowell, Sr. shines the spotlight on Robert A.W. Lowndes’ reign of digests.

News Digest

Industry News
• Catch up on breaking news and cover previews from the digest world’s favorite editors, publishers, and writers.

Switchblade Magazine No. 12
• Sword & Sorcery Annual
Marilyn Monroe’s Digest Cover Trading Cards
Rock and a Hard Place No. 3

Robert Snashall's Gaslight Unrolling of the Stars

Richard Krauss “The Village of the Wraith” art by Rick McCollum
Robert Snashall “Gaslight Unrolling of the Stars” art by Marc Myers
Joe Wehrle, Jr. “A Young Guitarist’s Dream”

• Over 100 digest magazine covers in full color, first issue factoids, cartoons by Bob Vojtko, and more
• Cover by Brian Buniak, 160 pages, published in full color by Larque Press.

Print $20 from Lulu.com
Print $20 from amazon.com
Kindle $4.99 from amazon.com
Digital $4.99 from Magzter.com

Fate-ful Project Updates

The new Fate arrived this week.
Fate No. 736

Fate No. 736

Highlights of this issue include two articles on mermaids, a report on nature spirits, and a piece by dowser Marty Cain.

Get a copy on newsstands now, or order directly from fatemag.com

Status Updates
The print proof of Oddities and Other Grotesques by Roman Scott arrived this week from Marc Myers. The overall package looks great, but quite a few pages require some tweaks. Mostly image adjustments to make the artwork reproduce in its best light. A little time consuming, but I progressed about half way through the book by week’s end. More to do next week.

The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 June 2020

Alec Cizak sent a few ads for the next Pulp Modern. And Ran Scott completed another illustration. We’re making good progress, and hope to wrap things up before the end of the year.

The second print proof for The Digest Enthusiast No. 13 is in St. Paul on its way to Vancouver. Although next week is probably a lousy week to release a book, I’ll do it anyway ‘cause I’m an indie publisher and there are a few folks who’ve been patiently waiting. Watch for an update next week.

In the meantime, our current issue: The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 is available in print at Lulu.com and Amazon, and in digital formats at Kindle Books and Magzter.

Fauci in review

Fauci by Michael Specter

This audio biography of Dr. Anthony S. Fauci by Michael Specter provides an excellent overview of the famed doctor’s career, along with excerpts from interviews recorded along the way. Covering more than three decades of work and discovery, from his childhood in Brooklyn to his pioneering research and advocacy for patients with AIDS, up to the current global pandemic with COVID-19.

In addition to its fact-based case for science, its also an illustration of the power of grounding yourself in facts. Faced with a tidal wave of emotion, and too often misinformed rage, Fauci kept his cool and his self-esteem intact by sticking to facts as the foundation for his even-handed, often generous, response to his critics and those intent on bullying. A casebook for going high, when your critics go low.

WIP Update
The proof copy of The Digest Enthusiast No. 13 arrived this week. The book will be manufactured by Lulu.com and was originally spec’ed on their 60 lb. interior stock. The proof looks good, but the color cover repros were not quite as crisp as I’d like. When I went back to upgrade to Lulu’s 80 lb. option, I found the selection no longer available since the book had already reached the proofing stage. This didn’t make sense to me, but there may be good reason(s) of which I’m unaware. I filled out a customer support request, but the response was an automated email that didn’t address my problem. I ended up “retiring” the project and opening a new one using 80# stock. A fresh print proof is in progress. Probably unnecessary, but I want to be sure everything looks good before the book’s release. The heavier stock is more expensive, so the price will be $20 for the print version. The release will likely be the week of the Christmas holiday. Watch for the announcement here.

Marc Myers finished reviewing the proof copy of his latest book Oddities and Other Grotesques by Roman Scott. Several pages are a bit dark, so he’s forwarded the proof to me. I’ll adjust the contrast/density to the pages that need it and upload a new interior file in the next week or two.

The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 June 2020

Ran Scott completed several more interior illustrations for the next Pulp Modern and sent some cover sketch ideas to editor Alec Cizak and I. We make the selection and now things are back in Ran’s capable hands. Still no hard date for release, but late Dec/early Jan seems realistic.

Our current issue: The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 is available in print at Lulu.com and Amazon, and in digital formats at Kindle Books and Magzter.

New Release Dec. 4, 2020

New Release:

Nostalgia Digest Winter 20221

Nostaglia Digest Winter 2021
The remarkable life of OLIVIA de HAVILLAND, Hollywood legend
The screen partnership of NELSON EDDY and JEANETTE MacDONALD
How THE SHADOW became one of radio’s great heroes
From Teddy Bears to Barbie dolls: The world’s most famous Christmas gifts
The career of DANNY THOMAS, and a promise he kept
Agnes Moorehead, Richard Widmark and other radio actors who became movie stars
A complete listing for Steve Darnall’s Those Were The Days!
FLOYD GIBBONS, the globe-trotting reporter who became a radio star
PLUS: Memories of mimeograph machines; the way televisions used to be; more!
Ordering Information

The Digest Enthusiast No. 13

Status Report
Finished up The Digest Enthusiast No. 13 and ordered a print proof from Lulu.com this week. Hopefully, the proof will show up next week and everything will align with the targeted Dec. 18th release. Meanwhile, prep on the Kindle and Magzter versions kept me busy.

Here’s a cover preview of the issue, with a painting by Brian Buniak.

In other updates, Ran Scott continued his work creating artwork for Pulp Modern Vol. 2 No. 6.

No news from Marc Myers on the print proof from Lulu.com on his Roman Scott collection–with a little luck he can release it next week.

Our current issue: The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 is available in print at Lulu.com and Amazon, and in digital formats at Kindle Books and Magzter.

The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 June 2020

New Releases Nov. 27, 2020

Switchblade No. 13

Switchblade No. 13
The world’s only no-limit outlaw noir magazine is back for a thirteenth round. The one you thought you’d never see. With Fiction, Flash and Poetry from Robert Ragan, David Harry Moss, Gene Breaznell, Serena Jayne, Jay Rohr, Brian Beatty, Elliot F. Sweeney, Stanton McCaffery, Danny Sophabmisay, Andrew Bourelle, George Garnet, David Rachels, and Alec Cizak. Featured interview with author Serena Jayne.
5” x 8” digest, 183 pages
Editor: Scotch Rutherford
Print $7.99 Kindle $2.99

New from Hard Case Crime is Shills Can’t Cash Chips, first published in 1961 by William Morrow. It’s book No. 22 in the Cool and Lam series.

Shills Can't Cash Chips by Erle Stanley Gardner

From the world-famous creator of PERRY MASON, Erle Stanley Gardner—at his death the best-selling American writer of all time—comes another baffling case for the Cool & Lam detective agency. Return to the 1960s as a simple insurance investigation into a car accident puts Bertha Cool and Donald Lam on the trail of murder – and Donald hip-deep in danger when he poses as an ex-con to infiltrate a criminal gang. It’s Gardner’s twistiest caper ever, and a fitting conclusion to Hard Case Crime’s revival of this classic (and long unavailable) detective series.
5” x 8” 240 pages
Print $10.99 Kindle $7.99

“A high-spirited romp you’ll be sorry to see end.” -Kirkus Reviews

“Just the ticket for fans of retro crime fiction.” -Publishers Weekly 

“For those who like their crime fiction to be high-octane, this novel is a stunner.” -Daily Mail

The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 June 2020

Project Updates
Editor Marc Myers has ordered a proof copy of the new hardcover collection of comix and zines by the late Roman Scott: Oddities and Other Grotesques. With a little luck the 168-page volume will be available from Lulu.com in December.

The Digest Enthusiast No. 13 is about 99% complete and I hope to upload the files to Lulu.com early next week and get a print proof underway. I’m hoping the release date will be Dec. 18.

Our current issue: The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 is available in print at Lulu.com and Amazon, and in digital formats at Kindle Books and Magzter.

New Releases

Several great new releases in the last week or so:

All Due Respect 2020

All Due Respect 2020
Featuring the work of Stephen D. Rogers, Tom Leins, Michael Pool, Andrew Davie, Sharon Diane King, Preston Lang, Jay Butkowski, Steven Berry, Craig Francis Coates, Bobby Mathews, Michael Penncavage, and BV Lawson. Edited by Chris Rhatigan and David Nemeth.

Print $11.95 Kindle $4.99

The Sleazy Reader No. 9

The Sleazy Reader No. 9
Crime special! Sleazy reading in the crime genre, with articles on 1950s sleazy digest magazines, comics, paperbacks and true crime magazines. Includes the life and death of True Detective magazine, pre-code comics theft from EC Comics, when the crime genre went hardcore, Harlan Ellison in the crime digests, Crime Does Not Pay comics, Mafia true-crime paperbacks. And more! 74 full color pages, loaded with illustrations.

Print $10.99

Paperback Parade No. 109

Paperback Parade No. 109
Gary Lovisi: Paperback Talk
Gary Lovisi: The Master Artist: Sam Peffer
Tom Cantrell: How Roy Higgins Managed the Adaptation of the Novel Captain and The Kings for the 1976 TV Miniseries
Gary Lovivi: Collecting The Winthrop Press in Very Tiny Paperbacks
Jim Fitzpatrick: The Persistent Image of “I, the Jury”
Richard Greene: Matchless Paperbacks
Jon D. Swartz: Alfred Bester
Phil Harbottle: The Tit-Bits Science Fiction Library

Paperback Parade No. 109 Nov. 2020
Editor: Gary Lovisi
Designer: Richard Greene
~5.5” x 8.5” 100 pages, full color throughout
$15 + postage for a single issue
$40 for three-issue subscription
Gryphon Books website

Mystery, Crime, and Mayhem No. 1
This new mystery and crime digest debuted in June 2020. Every issue is themed–this one is built around private eyes. MCM is a well-concieved series, delivered in a pleasing package. The tone is soft-boiled, with plenty of character development and embellished settings. My favorite in this edition was the story by editor Leah Cutter: “Going Deeper.”
Print $12.99 Kindle $4.99

Oddities and Other Grotesques
The Roman Scott collection is nearly complete. Editor Marc Myers is giving the files a final review and completing the setup at Lulu.com. The book topped out at 168 pages and includes over 14 issues of Scott’s comix and art zines.

Pulp Modern Vol. 2 No.6
The initial layout is complete. Ran Scott is busy on the issue’s artwork and the book will be out shortly after he finishes up his work.

The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 June 2020

The Digest Enthusiast No. 13
Finished proofreading the bulk of the issue and made various corrections to the art and copy. All that remains is the front-matter and compiling the News Digest. I’ll work on that next week before Thanksgiving.

Our current issue: The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 is available in print at Lulu.com and Amazon, and in digital formats at Kindle Books and Magzter.