This week I paid a visit to a Half Price Books location I'd never been to before (the one in Burleson, Texas) and came away with a few things. First up are three books by John Whitlatch: FRANK T.'S PLAN, GANNON'S VENDETTA, and TANNER'S LEMMING. Whitlatch is something of a legendary figure among action/adventure fans because not much is known about him. I've seen his books around for years and at one time owned all of them, but I've never read any of them. I have to remedy that soon.
Next a trio of vintage hardboiled mysteries: BLOW HOT, BLOW COLD by Gerald Butler, THE FOURTH POSTMAN by Craig Rice, and SHAKEDOWN by Richard Ellington. Butler was a British author who came up with one of the all-time great hardboiled titles, KISS THE BLOOD OFF MY HANDS. I have several of his books but have never read any of them. This one is set on the French Riviera. The Craig Rice book is one of her novels featuring lawyer John J. Malone. Everything I've read by her has been good. I've also read several novels by Richard Ellington that I liked. SHAKEDOWN, originally published in hardback under the title JUST KILLING TIME, features his private eye character Steve Drake.
I nearly always pick up Zebra horror novels from the Eighties and Nineties when I come across them, especially if they're by William W. Johnstone. In this case I found two of them, WOLFSBANE and THE DEVIL'S CAT. I may already have one or both of these, I'm not sure, but I wasn't going to leave them there.
Finally a couple of Westerns: THE KINCAID COUNTY WAR, another entry in the Wild Bill series by Judd Cole (John Edward Ames) and BLOOD ON THE GRASS by Lewis B. Patten, a Leisure paperback that includes the title novel and a bonus novella "Sharpshod", both of which appeared originally in Western pulps in the early Fifties, the former in the April 1953 issue of GIANT WESTERN under the name Lewis Ford, a Patten pseudonym I wasn't aware of, and the latter in the May 1953 issue of WEST. Should be good.
New e-books this week include a handful of pulp reprints from Radio Archives, including The Spider, Operator #5, The Scorpion, and The Mysterious Wu Fang.