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CLASSIC PULP REPRINTS 2015 Slate

Posted in Classic Pulp Reprints,Murania Press,Upcoming Books on March 19, 2015 @ 12:45 am

Although it’s been a long time between issues of Blood ‘n’ Thunder and volumes in our Classic Pulp Reprints series, that doesn’t mean we haven’t been planning and working on Murania’s 2015 slate of releases. The planned double issue of BnT has ballooned into another triple issue (but without a book-length novel this time) that will debut at next month’s Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention. I’ll have more to say about the issue in a future post. Today let’s concentrate on the upcoming Classic Pulp Reprints releases.

First up will be J. Allan Dunn’s The Island, his 1922 sequel to Barehanded Castaways, which was the second book in our reprint line. Island, like Castaways before it, originally appeared in Adventure magazine and—quite inexplicably—never saw publication between hard covers in America. It continued the saga of men with widely differing backgrounds coming together to survive on a small Pacific island after being shipwrecked. Barehanded Castaways ended with a handful of survivors attempting a return to civilization on a sturdy sea-raft while several of their comrades stayed behind. The Island picks up where the earlier tale left off and is every bit as engrossing as its predecessor. The Murania Press edition has a similar design to our Castaways, even to using the same N. C. Wyeth painting for the cover, so that buyers can instantly see that it’s a companion volume to the first story. Look for it next month.

Layout 1

Next in the series is what I believe to be one of the unsung great pulp yarns of the early Thirties, originally published in a 1933 issue of the Popular Publications magazine Dime Mystery Book. Written by William Corcoran and titled The Purple Eye, it’s a 60,000-word novel that could very well have been the template for later hero pulps from Harry Steeger’s Popular. Corcoran is largely forgotten today, but he was a successful fictioneer who wrote for most of the major detective pulps (Black Mask, Detective Story, and Detective Fiction Weekly among them), the top anthology pulps (including Argosy, Short Stories, and Adventure, which he briefly edited), and some of the best slicks (Liberty, Cosmopolitan, and The American Magazine).

The Purple Eye has as its protagonist one of those globe-trotting millionaire adventurers so common in the hero pulps. Wayne Saxon returns to New York City from a round-the-world trip to find his home town terrorized by a crime cult, The Brotherhood of Baktuun, headed by the brilliant but seldom-seen Purple Eye. The police prove unable to halt the Brotherhood’s depredations, and Saxon combats the Eye’s murderous followers with the aid of a vigilante band known as The Secret Hundred. The Purple Eye moves like a runaway train and crackles with action, and after reading it you’ll wonder why this glittering little gem isn’t better known by pulp aficionados.

dime_mystery_193308

Coming later this year is our Johnston McCulley Collection, three volumes of crime and mystery yarns written by the creator of Zorro and originally published in Street & Smith’s Detective Story Magazine. I’ve chosen novel-length compilations of novelettes featuring favorite McCulley series characters. These books are Alias The Thunderbolt, The Return of Black Star, and The Spider Spins His Web. Each volume will include a specially commissioned essay on the prolific author. Thunderbolt and Spider reprint the first three installments of their respective series, while Black Star contains novelettes from that series’ third year. I’ll share more information on this trio as their publication draws closer.

Detective Story 1916-12-20

Finally, this year will see publication of the first “double” volume in the Classic Pulp Reprints line. Two by Sheehan (that’s just a tentative title; I hope to come up with something snappier) will offer a brace of exemplary short novels written by Perley Poore Sheehan for the Munsey pulps: 1913’s The Copper Princess and 1915’s The Abyss of Wonders. Neither story is easy to categorize, but together they offer enough fantasy, mystery, melodrama, science fiction, and lost-race adventure to satisfy any fan of pulp fiction. Unlike many pulpateers of the Teens, Sheehan wrote in a fresh, vibrant style that makes his novels eminently readable a hundred years after they first saw print. Two by Sheehan will also include a long essay covering not only Sheehan’s pulp career but also his long involvement with Hollywood. The books in our Classic Pulp Reprints line generally sell for $19.95 each, but this one will carry a retail price of $24.95.

We’ve bitten off a lot to chew on for 2015 but, like I said earlier, work on these books is already well underway. Keep checking back here for further information and release dates.

3 thoughts on “CLASSIC PULP REPRINTS 2015 Slate

  1. Hi Ed,

    Good to see the Allan Dunn sequel to the Castaways, I really enjoyed that story. I hope that one comes out first.

    Best wishes
    Sai

  2. Have not yet seen the Sheehan – especially the essay would be interesting. If you cannot wait for the paperback, Abyss and Copper Princess are still available from B(rian) E(arl) B(rown) books in low-cost editions.

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