Era of Pulp
June 12, 2009 7:10 PM   Subscribe

On the one hand, burning a book eliminates a possible window into a society's collective mindset.

On the other hand, I can't imagine anyone reading these.
posted by LSK at 7:29 PM on June 12, 2009

"Ladies in Hades" hehhe-he ...
posted by RavinDave at 7:36 PM on June 12, 2009


To be totally fair, more than a few great novels got this treatment. Ross Macdonald was easily one of the most literate writers in any genre in the last century and is credited by people like William Goldman and Eudora Welty with bringing detective fiction into the arena of high literature -- yet virtually all of his earlier stuff was released with these cheesy, sexually suggestive covers that had bupkiss to do with the actual story.
posted by RavinDave at 7:49 PM on June 12, 2009 [1 favorite]

"Lady, Mind That Corpse" is one of those titles that really leaves you wanting more.
posted by rmless at 7:54 PM on June 12, 2009 [2 favorites]

I just can't get tired at looking at these things for some reason. Some vintage lesbian pulp fiction previously on Metafilter. A bunch more of trashy paperbacks here.

A few from my own collection: here, here and here. That last one I linked to, Swamp Lust, I bought at a flea market for fifty cents. Every sex scene had the page corner folded down.
posted by marxchivist at 8:00 PM on June 12, 2009

Nobody seems able to keep their bra strap up. These babes have some short shoulders.
posted by selfmedicating at 8:17 PM on June 12, 2009

When I actually get around to collecting something, trashy books are high on the list. They're just so fascinatingly crude.
posted by graventy at 8:37 PM on June 12, 2009

WTF? Bait and switch with the link text there, you're lucky I like sleazy pulp covers too.
posted by Artw at 8:37 PM on June 12, 2009

On the other hand, I can't imagine anyone reading these.

One is by James M. Cain, one of the absolute masters of 20th century crime fiction.
posted by Bookhouse at 8:51 PM on June 12, 2009

To add to marxchivist's list, I'll recommend Pop Sensations, which has great covers and even better commentary.
posted by bibliowench at 9:07 PM on June 12, 2009 [1 favorite]

This is the sort of stuff the pro-Nixon pro-Vietnam silent majority Americans took home at night and read under the covers, then during the daytime attacked those dirty hippies and lefties who would destroy the decency of this country.
posted by stbalbach at 9:09 PM on June 12, 2009

While I am fairly certain that there were women like this that existed back in those days, this was much more of a forum for men's fantasies.
posted by mnb64 at 9:29 PM on June 12, 2009

I would love to actually read one of these books. Do I just have to scrounge every bargain bin in America, or can you still find them anywhere online?
posted by Lipstick Thespian at 9:34 PM on June 12, 2009

Stbalbach: Indeed. Sen. Strom Thurmond opposed Abe Fortas's nomination to become Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and he came upon a deviously clever way to derail the nomination. Thurmond found a case where the Supreme Court overturned a lower court's ruling that certain pornographic materials were obscene. He turned that into a charge that the SCOTUS thought such materials were "not obscene." From Nixonland:
Blocking a president's Supreme Court nominee was an unpopular decision and was hard to defend. ... But protecting kids from porn - that was easy. It gave Southern Democrats cover for defying their president. It gave Republicans cover to not appear partisan.
But the very next paragraph:
Thurmond arranged a movie screening for his colleagues, who in private forgot their horror, laughing, shouting crudities, at the images projected on the wall - until they screened a print, seized during a 1967 raid on the University of Michigan campus, of the underground polysexual art film Flaming Creatures, which received less glowing reviews: "I was so sick, I couldn't even get aroused," one senator said - acknowleding publicly for the first time that shocked, shocked senators sometimes got aroused, too.
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 9:38 PM on June 12, 2009

where can i get a copy?
posted by Flood at 10:01 PM on June 12, 2009 [1 favorite]

(Sixteen domains want javascript permissions from the link?)

As a kid, I found the promise of pulp covers was much greater than the reward offered inside (if there was one at all)--a good lesson to have taken to heart, as it turns out, before my teenage dating career* got underway.

"Career" was more like a bunch of poor-paying temp gigs which, just at the point where they are to decide whether to hire you or not, let you go.
posted by maxwelton at 10:06 PM on June 12, 2009

I would love to actually read one of these books. Do I just have to scrounge every bargain bin in America, or can you still find them anywhere online?
posted by Lipstick Thespian

Oh yes.
posted by marxchivist at 10:57 PM on June 12, 2009

Can you get posters of these kinds of pulp covers somewhere?
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 10:58 PM on June 12, 2009

I used to rent a room at a house whose owner claimed to have the largest collection of paperbacks in North America. He claimed something outrageous like "I have every paperback published between X and X", which may or may not have been true. He had tens upon tens if not hundreds of thousands of the things laying around. Every wall was a giant bookshelf, except the two rooms he rented out. However the hallway just outside my room was devoted to the trashier side of his collection, though we were strictly forbade from touching the books which were all in plastic protectors anyhow, I often got a giggle from pulling a random title down based on the spine and seeing the pulpy art in all its era glory. Titles like "Rich Bitch In Heat" and "Deflowering The Doctors Daughter" were all like the ones seen here. However there was a much seedier, much more disturbing wall devoted to books whose nature was demented to say the least. There was "Canine Sister", a book that you could turn to any single page at random and find a nauseatingly graphic (and grammatical error-ridden, did these publishers have any editors at all? I mean, if you are going to go through the trouble of publishing lit-porn on beastiality and incest, isn't some basic editing the least you can do?) description of women and men having sex with their dogs. I still have one book I stole from himn, the aforementioned Canine Sister, just because I thought it was the most outrageous and disgusting thing it's hard to believe even exists. For some reason, real beast porn seems less outrageous to me then novels on the subject. Perhaps it's because my own mind draws much worse images then any beast porn I've ever seen when I read words like "Then with a deep gutteral bark Max unloaded his doggy load into Peggy's loving mouth, his engorged lipstick spurting the things puppies are made of all over the back of her throat until the viscous canine juice dribbled over the side of her mouth. Turning around, Max showed his love for his loving Master by licking the fluid from her face as she smiled knowing the true love that only Max could offer her would never be equaled by any man."

I wonder if he ever realized a single titled was missing. And then wondered what the fuck was wrong with me, having stolen one of his more salacious novels. Not even some normal lit-porn, some truly disturbing stuff that is creepy to even hold with its hand drawn pencil sketch of a dog (and not some anthropomorphized human/canine like furries are into, just a straight up dog) mounting a naked women on all fours against that particular shade of 70's brown and the words "Canine Sister" in a basic type, with no author named.

Books like that, there were also a number of incest themes books like "The Johnson Family Reunion" and "Keeping It In The Family", I wonder where they ever came from. They were obviously from the 70's, but I wonder about the published, the authors, etc. I've only done minimal research on the matter, but I never have located any info about the people who are behind such works.

These books linked, pale in comparison in terms of trashiness.
posted by mediocre at 3:13 AM on June 13, 2009 [1 favorite]

Having posted trash as an interesting subject, the above post wasn't my intent.
posted by Mblue at 3:46 AM on June 13, 2009

More vintage lesbian trashy pulp goodness here, plus an interesting essay on Lesbian Pulp Novels 1935-1965.
posted by verstegan at 10:37 AM on June 13, 2009

MetaFilter: excerpts of bestiality
posted by vanar sena at 5:29 AM on June 14, 2009

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