Tuesday, July 13, 2010

"Dutch Treat" - an unreprinted Paul Cain story

Paul Cain, aka Peter Ruric (real name George Sims) is best remembered for his ultra-tough novel Fast One (reviewed HERE). But he also sold 12 short stories to Black Mask, one to Detective Fiction Weekly and one to Star Detective. Seven of those Black Mask tales were collected in the Avon paperback Seven Slayers in 1946, and that book is now back in print.

Two more stories have been reprinted elsewhere.  "Trouble Chaser", from Black Mask, appeared in the 1995 book , Hard Boiled: An Anthology of American Crime Stories, and "Sockdolager" is in a replica of the April 1936 Star Detective published by Adventure House.

But as far as I know, Cain's other five stories have never been reprinted, and I think that's a shame. A few months back I offered scans via email of two of those tales: "555" from Detective Fiction Weekly and "Chinaman's Chance" from Black Mask, and requests are still coming in. There are a lot of hungry Paul Cain fans out there.

Well, I recently discovered I had a third unreprinted story, and this is it, from Black Mask of December 1936 (see cover below). If you'd like scans of this 9-page tale, shoot me email at delewis1@hotmail.com and I'll be happy to send it to you. "555" and "Chinaman's Chance" are still available too.

And if anyone out there has scans of the remaining two stories to share, I'd be mighty pleased to see them. Those stories are: "Hunch" from Black Mask March 1934, and "Death Song" from Black Mask January 1936.

I posted this cover some months back when discussing Lester Dent, with the following remarks:

The artist took a few liberties here. Dent's Oscar Sail dresses all in black, while this guy has blue trousers and a green shirt. Still, this is based on a scene from the story. Private eye Sail visits his client in her hotel room (not on a boat, as seen here), where she's in bed with the covers pulled up around her neck. When he pulls the covers down, he discovers she's tied up.

Dent's two Oscar Sail stories were his only sales to Black Mask. There undoubtedly would have been more had editor Joe Shaw not left the magazine soon after their appearance.

"Sail" from Nov. 1936, can be found in The Hard-Boiled Omnibus (edited by Shaw, 1946 & 1952), Tough Guys & Dangerous Dames (1994), and EQMM 11/53 (as "V Marks the Spot").

"Angelfish" was reprinted in Ron Goulart's The Hardboiled Dicks (1967), and The Hard-boiled Detective (1977), along with EQMM 6/47 and the EQ Anthology 1966 (as "Tropical Disturbance").


Deka Black said...

There is so many good stories never reprinted... And the copyrights owners (if there is one, that is) are, like we said in spain , "like the dog of the peasant: Nor eat nor let eat others"

Walker Martin said...

Thanks for your comments on Paul Cain. Aside from Hammett and Chandler, Paul Cain is certainly in the running for being one of the very best of the BLACK MASK writers. And this is despite the fact that he published only a few stories. The series of novelets making up the novel FAST ONE, just about are the toughest and most hardboiled fiction to ever appear in the pulps. And the title really fits the novel.

Charles Gramlich said...

One summer I'm going to take a month and just immerse myself in the black Mask pulps. I have a feeling I've missed a lot of good stuff.