Tuesday, August 31, 2021



The Shadowed Circle # 1

Editor/Publisher Steve Donoso

A Renaissance Press Publication

50 pages

From a wonderful cover image to the last stunning back cover pix, this little magazine is a pulp gem. Especially for those of you who consider the Shadow the greatest pulp creation of them all. Editor Steve Donoso and his staff have collected eleven insightful articles that cover a huge range of topics.

From Mr. Pulp Will Murray’s piece on Femme Fatales to Dwight Fuhro’s personal hunt for the most famous Shadow painting of them all. (Check out that back cover we mentioned earlier.) Each article is informative and well written. We knew nothing about the Shadow short-films until reading Joseph Gibson’s essay. All of this is solid fare for any true fan of the pulps.

Then Art Director John Sies does a magnificent job in laying out the pages and embellishing them with various images and drawings that are fitting to each segment. Some are familiar while others we’d never seen before. Each captures a different facet of the Shadow conveying the sense of mystery and danger he exuded whether on radio or in his own title.

In the end, it has been way too long since we’ve had such a delightful magazine devoted to this amazing character. Kudos to all involved and please, go get Ed Hulse to do a piece on Victor Jory’s Shadow serial. Something this reviewer would love to read.


Monday, August 30, 2021





By B.C. James


376 pgs

Often when reviewing a book we’ve absolutely loved, our most daunting challenge is getting that euphoria to you, dear readers.  “Mjolnir” is one of those books. From cover to cover it is a comedy-fantasy-action adventure and if all those elements blended together do not spell pulp, then we don’t know what does?

The plot is most imaginative. Odin, in dire fear of his own demise when the predicted Ragnarok occurs, banishes all the North Gods out of Asgard to Earth. Here, Thor, Loki, Freya and all the others finds themselves having to take on actual jobs to sustain themselves. Thor becomes a professional football player, Loki a savvy business man and Freya an expensive high class hooker. Quite the come down for the Goddess of Love. Of course Odin’s scheme has its flaws in that Loki still desires to knock off the Allfather and assume his authority and power. To do this he conspires with the other dimensional god, Surt.

Surt’s fee for this assistant is the sacrifice of a female Asgardian goddess. Loki agrees and sets his sights on Freya who has repeatedly spurned in the past. The final key element and the book’s title, is Thor’s powerful hammer, Mjolnir. He’s given it up and Odin believes by possessing it, he can thwart Ragnarok. Thus the book begins and within only a few chapters, a colorful cast of characters battling all over the U.S. in cataclysmic encounters the likes only seen in early Marvel comics.

B.C. James is a marvelous craftsman and his satirical wit is evident in every scene and line of dialog. So much that one has to wonder from magic elixir is he drinking. “Mjolnir” is a winner you really don’t want to miss. Don’t saw we didn’t tell you.



Wednesday, August 11, 2021




A Trash ‘N’ Treasures Mystery

By Barbara Allan

Guest Reviewer -Valerie Fortier

Severn House

194 pgs

Ron isn’t into Cozy mysteries and when this one arrived in the mail, he dropped it on my desk top with the suggestion I give it a go. Months later it’s still sitting there and I decided to give it a try. As a Mom myself, I totally get the mother-daughter dynamics. Sometimes they gel, other times they are nothing but oil and water.

I would recommend you take time to meet Vivian and Brandy. The mother-daughter team that never misses a chance to inject humor and fun while investigating a new mystery. I really enjoyed the book; especially the great twist at the end in regards to who done it. Just when you think you’ve got it solved, there’s more to be revealed.

The book offers up a truly wonderful cast of characters to “cozy” up by the fire and share some time with.

Final note – This is the start and end of my reviewing career. Thanks, Ron.

Wednesday, August 04, 2021




Killer Sharks in Men’s Adventure Magazines

Edited by Robert Deis & Wyatt Doyle


# new texture

192 pgs

With apologies to Peter Benchley, just when you thought it was safe go back into the Mam’s pulp library comes “Maneaters.” This is a collection of sixteen over-the-top tales of deadly shark encounters as offered in various Men’s Adventure Magazines during the 1960s, to include two wonderful cover photo and illustrations galleries. In all, these stories exemplify the horror thrills associated with these deadly sea predators and each entry provides more than enough blood and guts gore to engender some truly colorful nightmares and keep one from ever venturing out into the sea ever again.

Now we’ve all come to expect this kind of exploitive excellent from Deis and Doyle, but what elevates “Maneater” a notch above their previous titles is the afterwards provided by actual marine biologists who wonderfully debunk the various myths associated with sharks while at the same time offering factual data about these incredible fear inducing creatures.

“Maneaters” is a one kind of book that both applauds the imagination of Mams writers while at the same time demonstrating the dangers such fiction inspired. Today many species of shark are on endangered lists threatening to irrevocably upside the natural ecosystems of oceans around the world. A tip of the fedora to Deis and Doyle for both a fun read and a much needed warning that we must protect these magnificent beast from total extinction. Now that would be a real horror.