Saturday, December 12, 2015

Saturday Morning Western Pulp: Western Story, March 23, 1940

That's a pretty violent cover by H.W. Scott on this issue of WESTERN STORY. The stories inside are probably pretty hardboiled, too, with authors such as Ray Nafziger, Harry F. Olmsted, and Frank Richardson Pierce writing as Seth Ranger. There's also a story by Wilfred McCormick, famous to me as the author of the Bronc Burnett boy's sports novels that I read avidly as a kid. I had no idea at the time that he started out in the pulps.


S. Craig Zahler said...

I'd be curious how that Ray Nafziger story turns out if you choose to read it---and I'm also curious if it is a real 'book length novel' or only an advertised 'book length novel' (which can be as slim as 25 pages). I like the Nafziger short stories I've read thus far and would enjoy a longer story by him if he maintained the same quality control.

Walker Martin said...

I just checked my copy and the Nafziger story is 41 pages long counting 5 illustrations. This is the typical length of "book length" in WESTERN STORY around 1940. In the earlier 1930's issues they actually did run stories that were 80 or so pages complete in an issue.

By the way, the cover illustrates a scene from the story which looks sort of interesting but I'm still recovering from the PLANET STORIES dust of Mars so I doubt I'll get around to reading it.

James Reasoner said...

I don't know if I actually own this issue, but if I do, it's not where I can get to it at the moment. I plan to do something about my storage situation in the near future, though.

According to Jon Tuska, Nafziger wrote only two full-length novels, HELL ROARIN' TEXAS TRAIL and GUN SMOKE AT DAWN, both published under the name Robert Denver. I ordered a copy of HELL ROARIN' TEXAS TRAIL, which appears to be fairly easy to find. GUN SMOKE AT DAWN, on the other hand, seems to have vanished from the face of the earth.

S. Craig Zahler said...


thanks for the comments and information. i instantly ordered 'hell roaring texas trail' myself. i'm surprised at the nafziger pseudonym, though perhaps it was to distance the hard back from his pulp work...? in any case, i'm looking forward to digging in and always wanted a longer tale by him.

Anonymous said...

WorldCat shows half a dozen libraries holding GUN SMOKE AT DAWN, but none of them are in the U.S. -- one each in Ireland and Australia, and the rest in Great Britain. The book had British and Australian editions only, so not hugely surprising. / Denny Lien