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Kurt Vonnegut

Strange Bargain by Harry Whittington
Strange Bargain
Harry Whittington
Avon, 1959

“The luscious blonde actress was Hollywood’s hottest discovery until a killer cast her in the role of a cold, cold corpse,” says the blurb on The Dame. “Lovie flaunted her charms. Sucker bait was what she called it,” screams another on Passionate Lovie.

Welcome to the world of vintage paperbacks from the late 1940s to early 1970s – a publishing phenomenon of the time and now a highly collectible genre. Sexism, violence and lines like “A hard-boiled ex-cop. A hard-boiled dame. A hard-boiled murder,” were commonplace. How can you ever forget titles like The Brass Cupcake, Desire in the Ozarks and Knee-Deep in Death?

Whether you're a connoisseur of cops and robbers, an amateur private eye, or just out for a thrill a minute, enjoy. Dive into the gritty underbelly and visit a place and time when you could easily meet a buxom blonde bombshell - but not trust her as far as you could throw her.

*Warning – many of these books have adult themes.

Vintage Paperbacks

The Brass Cupcake by John D. MacDonald
The Brass Cupcake
John D. MacDonald
Fawcett, 1950

Married to Murder by Harry Whittington
Married to Murder
Harry Whittington
Phantom Books, 1951


Her Candle Burns Hot! by Hodge Evens
Her Candle Burns Hot!
Hodge Evens
Rainbow Books, 1951

Caberet Splendide by Georges Lamartine
Caberet Splendide
Georges Lamartine
Pedigree Books, date unknown

Wanted: Dead Men by M.E. Chaber
Wanted: Dead Men
M.E. Chaber
Paperback Library Series, 1970

"She had a way with men - a way of leading them to the grave!"

Passionate Lovie by Delores Dee
Passionate Lovie
Dolores Dee
Fabian Books, 1958

Phantom Lady by William Irish
Phantom Lady
William Irish
Pocket Books, 1944


The Dame by Carter Brown
The Dame
Carter Brown
Signet, 1959

Afraid in the Dark by Mark Derby
Afraid in the Dark
Mark Derby
Popular Library, 1953

Horns for the Devil by Louis Malley
Horns for the Devil
Louis Malley
Pocket Books, 1952

"The destructive terror of a man who lost the power to love."

Fort Frederick by Francoise Des Ligneris
Fort Frederick
Francoise Des Ligneris
Avon Books, 1960

The Cave of the Chinese Skeletons by Jack Seward
The Cave of the Chinese Skeletons
Jack Seward
Tower Books, 1964


The Nothing Man by Jim Thompson
The Nothing Man
Jim Thompson
Dell, 1954

Desire in the Ozarks by Shelby Steger
Desire in the Ozarks
Shelby Steger
Digit Books, 1957

Murder in Majorca by Michael Bryan
Murder in Majorca
Michael Bryan
Dell, 1957

"He intruded on a secret that only dead men knew."

Go Home, Stranger by Charles Williams
Go Home, Stranger
Charles Williams
Gold Medal, 1954

The Beach Girls by John D. MacDonald
The Beach Girls
John D. MacDonald
Gold Medal, 1959


Forty Lashes One Less by Elmore Leonard
Forty Lashes One Less
Elmore Leonard
Bantam, 1972

A Touch of Death by Charles Williams
A Touch of Death
Charles Williams
Gold Medal, 1954

Freaks Against Supermen by Ralph L. Finn
Freaks Against Supermen
Ralph L. Finn
Gaywood Press, 1950

"All he wanted was easy livin' and easy lovin'!"

The Shame of Vanna Gilbert by Glenn Watkins
The Shame of Vanna Gilbert
Glenn Watkins
Croydon, 1952

Knee-Deep in Death by Bruno Fischer
Knee-Deep in Death
Bruno Fischer
Gold Medal, 1956


Run, Chico, Run by Wenzell Brown
Run, Chico, Run
Wenzell Brown
Gold Medal, 1953

Kill Me in Tokyo by Earl Norman
Kill Me in Tokyo
Earl Norman
Berkley, 1958

Who Has Wilma Lathrop? by Day Keene
Who Has Wilma Lathrop?
Day Keene
Gold Medal, 1955



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