Poor, Poor Ophelia – Carolyn Weston

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23591287The thriller that was the basis for the pilot of the TV series The Streets of San Francisco. BRASH BOOKS is bringing out a new edition in February.

Detective Sgt Al Krug and his partner, young Casey Kellogg. With the Santa Monica police, catch a case of a young girl, about twenty, found dead, her body savagely beaten revealed by autopsy. One of a pair of twins, her brother is missing and a lawyer named David J. Farr is tied in some way.

Krug likes him for the murder as he keeps stonewalling the two cops, revealing a bit more with each interview. He’d bailed the girl out after a car wreck and a joint found on her person at the hospital.

There’s also a mystery “uncle” popping up in several spots the twins had been.51cYT9d6BnL Krug and Kellogg can find nothing on the man’s existence or even find him.

While Krug feels Farr is the murderer, Kellogg thinks him innocent. The duo plod along as Kellogg pieces various pieces together as a picture slowly emerges.

Nice action thriller, the first of three novls featuring the two cops.

At the right is the original hardcover edition. Book can be pre-ordered HERE.

Storme Warning – W. L. Ripley

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23550957BRASH BOOKS started with a big release in September of thirty books. February brings us eight more. STORME WARNING is the brand new fourth novel in the Wyatt Storme thriller series.

Storme is a retired NFL player, a wide receiver for the Dallas Cowboys, who grew tored of the life and lives a hermit-like existence in the Ozarks of his native Missouri in a cabin he built himself. He doesn’t mind people, just not often and not a lot of them. He hunts, has a long time girl friend who spends her weekends with him, and generally enjoys his life away from the limelight.

The land he owns is being used for on location filming of a movie about Jesse James. One part once held a small town he robbed and it’s being recreated by the film’s director.

Getting Wyatt to agree to all that was a job, one that old friend Chick Easton, ex-CIA, now working as a bodyguard for the film’s star, a much hated, but charismatic to the paying customers, young actor, who’d been getting death threats.

Chick also asks Wyatt to back him up and help locate the threat. The problem was that to know the actor was to want to kill him. Obnoxious with a crowd of hangers-on helping him in his wild partying.

To top things off, an old enemy of Wyatt’s, a piece of work named Rory Marchibroda, was out of prison and after revenge. Wyatt hadn’t put him there, but stopped him from his protection racket con with an old army buddy, using a sawed off wooden baseball bat to do so. Rory had been reduced to sticking up curb markets and been caught and sent to prison.

Two fronts and neither of them known at first by Wyatt and Chick.

I like Wyatt Storme. He’s a brash and sarcastic wit. Brash Books plans to bring the first three out as well and based on this one expect them to be good. Hopefully more new books in the series will come. February 3rd is the release date.

New In The House

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1: Crime On My Hands – George Sanders: two crime novels appeared many years ago under the George Sanders by-line. Both were actually written by women: Leigh Brackett and this one by Craig rice.

2: Quarry’s Greatest Hits – Max Allan Collins: a collection of three Quarry short stories and one novel, Prime target(hard to find at the time), retitled QUARRY”S VOTE for a later release.

and the ebooks:

a number of review copies here.

3: Totally Dead(review copy)- Michael Stone: a Streeter thriller, part of Brash Books February release

4: Poor, Poor Ophelia(review copy) – Carolyn Weston: Another of Brash Books releases. The novel was the basis for the pilot of the old TV series The Streets of San Francisco.

5: Flawless(review copy) _ Tom Kakonis: a new novel, part of the Brash release.

6: The God Project(review copy) – Stan Lee: one more coming from Brash Books In February.

7: The Oklahombres – Steve Hayes & Ben bridges: It didn’t matter a damn that Bill Doolin had never killed another man, that he was a loving husband and a devoted father with a young son.
No — Bill became a target for every Deputy U.S. Marshal in Oklahoma Territory because the people hailed him as “The King of the Outlaws.”
That alone meant he had to die — so his fate would set an example to anyone who thought of following his in his footsteps.
While Bill and his gang, the Oklahombres, raised hell throughout the Twin Territories of Oklahoma and the Indian Nations, U.S. Marshal E. D. Nix sent three hundred of his best men out with orders to catch or kill them. And that army of badge-packers were led by Nix’s ‘Three Guardsmen’ — the living legends that were Bill Tilghman, Heck Thomas and Chris Madsen. But that was the thing about the Oklahombres – they were going to be living legends too … or die trying!

8: The lawman and The Songbird – Chap O’Keefe: Pinkerton detective Joshua Dillard went undercover to a lawless Montana boom-town peopled by avaricious gold prospectors, ruthless bandits, fancy-pants rogues, and scheming dance-hall girls. In Cox City, he set his sights on arrogant, skull-faced Blackie Dukes and his bunch. But Alvin “Aces” Axford’s safe at the Magnet saloon was robbed right under Joshua’s nose. Who had spirited away Axford’s haul of gold? Joshua had to buy that plucky songstress Kate Thompson had double-crossed the dangerous Dukes gang, luring him into a futile dance in a raging blizzard across the Bitterroot Mountains. It was one of luckless Joshua’s most conspicuous failures. Not until seven years later did he return to Cox City, as town marshal. The time had come to solve the mysteries … and to lay the ghosts of failure with a blazing six-shooter!

9: The Wicked Kind – John Turner: When Sam Stoneman disappeared in November 1989, the bottom fell out of Mason Tanner’s life. Sam and Mason were best friends, and it was on a ski trip together in the Sierra Nevada Mountains that the unthinkable happened. A chance encounter with a creep in a bar set events into motion, and when it was over, Sam was gone. In the aftermath, Mason could never shake the feeling that he was responsible. The guilt nearly killed him. Years later Mason has turned his life around, the heartbreak and destructive living rooted in that long-ago night finally behind him. But the past remains, and when Mason’s girlfriend resurrects Sam’s case, it sets them both on a terrifying course of no return.

10: Dead Man’s Walk – Richard S. Prather: a Shell Scott novel. So says the private eye, “The island couldn’t be more charming with its stretches of white beaches, crystalline lagoons, and exotic bikini-clad beauties. But with three dead bodies and a voodoo priest, I had a hard time concentrating on sightseeing. It seemed superstitious to me, since nobody could solve the puzzling cause of their deaths. So with the assistance of my own lovely native doll, I had my work cut out for me–and that was simply managing to evade the long voodoo needle that was destined for my heart!”

11: The Lost – Evan Ronan: a horror novel gifted me by the author because I reviewed another of his books.

12: A Dubious Device(review copy) – Gerald S. Kulwicki & Kristopher Kubicki: the latest colt Banyon novel, this one dealing with Nazis and a Nanobot plot.

13: The Hitmen: Death For Sale)review copy) – P. J. Mersedsen & Quentin Rodriquez: A pair of ill matched hitmen meet on the same job for different handlers.

14: Borderline – Bob Herzberg: a new novel from james reasoner’s Rough Edges Press.

Dead Men Don’t Make Shadows(Inginocchiati Straniero… I Cadaveri Non Fanno Ombra!)1970

American actor Jack Betts appeared in a couple of soap operas and even hadhunt a part in the very first Spider-man movie with Tobey Maguire. But he really came into his own and had a fine career doing spaghetti westerns under the name Hunt Powers.

As was usual with spaghetti westerns, DEAD MEN DON’T MAKE SHADOWS appeared in America under more than one title. I went with the shorter one as Stranger That Kneels Beside the Shadow of a Corpse seemed a bit long. I believe it was the literal translation of the Italian title.

Powers is Lazar Peacock, a bounty killer. He comes off as something of a vicious personality at times, seeming to like to 190px-I_cadaveri_non_fanno_ombra_database_pagetorture his hunts. Spaghetti vet Gordon Mitchell has a cameo as Roger Murdock, a man with twelve thousand on his head. Lazar drives him away from several water holes in the desert with gunshots before allowing him to drink his fill, then killing him. We also see he holds a crippled old man at an isolated cemetery with no way to get out. No horse, a game leg, and no way to carry water from where he stays, he protests his innocence to Lazar every time he comes. Lazar promises to help him–soon!

The other lead is a mystery man(Franco Borelli, billed as Chet Davis), a young fellow that is following Lazar, always one step behind we see as at each town, wanted posters are missing for Murdock until he arrives at one ahead of the bounty killer and settles down to await his arrival. The English language version I saw gives no name, he being referred to as the Stranger a couple of times(the IMDb post of the film listsd32397 him as the Stranger. The Spaghetti Western Database however has him as Blonde(his hair color) When the bounty man brings in Murdock, the Stranger follows him.

The mining town of Lamazos is where they end up. A man named Barrett(Ettore Manni) owns the town and everything in it. he wears a white suit and the actor uses a small hand fan as a prop in most scenes. He has a mine forman named Medina(Benito Pacifico, billed as Dennis Colt) that wears a scarlet suit with black trim, likes using a whip, and has a thing for a beauty named Maya(Simonetta Vitelli, billed as Simone Blondell), a fortune teller who uses her wiles to get Medina to ease up on the peasants.

imagesThe relationship of all these personalities evolves over the picture at a leisurely pace, which doesn’t hurt the film at all.

All becomes clear at that isolated cemetery as Lazar and the Stranger have their final showdown.

the director was Demofilo Fidani billing himself as Miles Deems, though he use his real name as Executive Producer. A prolific director, he seems to have had a reputation as a, how shall I put it, melodramatic man.

Not a bad movie as these things go.

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