Saturday, February 25, 2012
Saturday Morning Western Pulp: Star Western, October 1953
We were talking about this issue on the WesternPulps group the other day, so I thought I'd use it for this week's pulp cover. By this time STAR WESTERN had been around for about twenty years and was considered one of the top Western pulps, but I'd be willing to bet that sales had dropped off some by that point. The magazine seems to be going for some of the RANCH ROMANCES market with that above-the-title banner "Big Romances of the West". Regardless of the slant, this looks like a fine issue with stories by good authors such as William Heuman, Frank Castle, Jonathan Craig (better known for his hardboiled mysteries and police procedural novels), and Will Cook. I'm not familiar with Charles Beckman Jr., the author of the lead novel, but it made for good cover fodder. There's also a poem by the ubiquitous S. Omar Barker and a few other stories. My favorite title in the issue: Craig's "Honkatonk Hussy". And the reason we were talking about this on WesternPulps is that it was reprinted in part as the British edition of WESTERN STORY for October 1956, with the addition of a story by Ed La Vanway that doesn't appear in the American STAR WESTERN version.