Doc Savage: The Sinister Shadow by Kenneth Robeson and Lester Dent
As my gentle readers may know, I’m a big pulp fan, especially of the Doc Savage novels. Most written by Lester Dent, under the house name of Kenneth Robeson. Will Murray proves himself as the modern master of the classic pulp with this mash up with Doc Savage and The Shadow. While I’m a huge Doc fan, I’ve read enough Shadow novels to do more than just hum the tune. Murray skillfully blends the styles of Walter Gibson and Lester Dent in this book. Stir in an over the top villain, who is completely and utterly ruthless, as an evil villain of the era should be, you have a story that Smith & Street would have proudly published.
The Evil in Pemberley House by Philip Jose Farmer and Win Scott Eckert
Win Scott Eckert finishes an unpublished Farmer novel set deep in Farmer’s Wold Newton settings. Half the fun of this book is spotting all the references. Some are obvious, others require a Farmerphile, such as myself, to spot. Overall, a nice bit of pulp set in the early 70s. Patricia Clarke Wildman, the daughter of the Pulp Hero known as “Doc Savage”, is in a rough emotional spot, after the death of her parents, and her recent husband. Then she discovers that she is inheriting an English estate, made famous in the Jane Austin novel, “Pride and Prejudice.” Of course there is a ghost involved, and some shady characters among the living up to no good. With only minor spoilers, let me say that good mystery and spot of adventure is just what Patricia needed to get her out of her funk. She is her father’s daughter after all. Mild warning about the sex scenes. Very risque by 1970’s standards, but not so much today. Milder than what you would find in John Ringo’s Ghost series. A good read for the Farmer fan, but perhaps a bit too much ‘inside baseball’ references for someone not familiar with Farmer’s body of work.
I read my first Doc Savage novel, The Land of Terror, somewhere between mid 1970 and mid 1972. I was living in Curundu at the time, and I remember buying it in Panama City. Since then I’ve read most of the original 181 novels, PJF’s Escape From Loki, and a number of the newer ones written by Will Murry. I have two well read copies of Farmer’s Doc Savage: His Apocalypic Life. I have comics from both the Marvel and DC series. I also own the George Pal “Man of Bronze” movie in glorious VHS.
Needless to say, I’m looking forward to a well done Doc Savage movie. Shane Black, of Iron Man 3 fame, has obtained a green light for a Doc Savage movie. So, high hopes for a really cool movie here. Have to say, I’m more interested in who he is going to cast as Doc’s cousin Patrica than Doc at this point.
Update: According to IMDB, Chris Hemsworth is rumored to play Clark Savage, Jr. This would be fornicating awesome.
I have to say I was pleasantly surprised about the amount of Dieselpunk on Pinterest.
It looks like the old FASA RPG Crimson Skies counts as Dieselpunk these days.
Phoenix Rising: A Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences Novel by Pip Ballantine and Tee Morris
The first in a new Steampunk action/adventure/romance series. Not a bad first outing for the writing team of Ballantine and Morris. Good solid formula adventure, the kind Lester Dent made a very nice living writing during the Golden Age of Pulp. That is a favorable comparison by the way. This novel, which takes place in the 1890’s, complete with airships, Analytic Engines, steam powered bar bots serving beer and a mystery filled “Ministry” protecting the British Empire. This series follows two agents of that Ministry, a studious “Archivist” aptly named “Books” and the uber-field agent, Ms. “Braun”, who wears a bullet proof corset (Ministry issue of course), is a crack shot with her two customer revolvers and has a fondness for explosives.
Stop groaning! The plot flows well and has enough twists and fight scenes to keep you engaged. In all a good, fun read. I’ll be looking forward to the next installment in this Steampunk series.
The Man of Bronze and The Land of Terror by Lester Dent.
The first two Doc Savage novels.
The first Doc Savage novel I read was The Land of Terror back in either 1971 or 1972. It was a Bantam reprint that I picked up at store in Panama City just outside the Balboa Gate. Since then, I have read over 160 of the original 181 Doc Savage novels, as well as several by Philip Jose Farmer (licensed or otherwise) and Will Murray. IMNSHO, Doc Savage was the greatest of the Pulp Era Heros.
Melody of Vengeance by Michael A. Black.
A rousing good pulp adventure that pays tribute to the two greatest pulp heros, Doc Savage and the Shadow!
Filed under: Monday Book Pick, Pulp, Science Fiction
She Murdered Me with Science by David Boop
A delightful mix of hard boiled dective story and good old fashioned pulp science story, with a dash of Jazz thrown in for flavor.
Ya, ya. I know it’s Tuesday. I’ve been busy.
Keeping on the film noir trend, comes this classic from 1997. A great cast, a gripping story and look into the dark steamy side of beautiful, sunny, southern California. Kim Basinger won an Oscar for her role in this film. Other cast members includes: Russell Crowe, Guy Pearce, Kevin Spacey, and James Cromwell. Cromwell shows his range in this role. His other work has included Star Trek films and the “Revenge of the Nerds” films. Part the films depth is watching the growth of the characters played by Crowe, Pearce and Spacey. In all, it’s a dark, well made film that tells its story through complex characters.
One place to get a new fix of crunchy Pulp Goodness is Decoder Ring Theater.
“…all-new audio adventures in the tradition of the classic programs of Radio’s Golden Age.”
The adventures come in two flavors, hard boiled detective stories and masked hero adventure. Black Jack Justice features PI Jack Justice and his partner, Trixie Dixon, Girl Detective. The masked heroes are Canada’s own Red Panda and the Flying Squirrel.
Personally, I listen to them both. Stop by and check ’em out.