Harry Whittington’s Softcores

Whittington - Dexter - Passion Burned

The great thing with the Greenleaf/Cornith books, is you never know what you might get, especially with house pen names, since you don’t know who wrote it, and the covers and blurbs often do not match the story…there will be sex, sure, but you may get a detective noir, a murer mystery, a mob story, a romance…Lynn Munroe talks about Harry Whitting’s 38 softcores here.  This is what he says about the above, Passion Burned, which is

…about loneliness. Lots of other things happen, including the shooting pictured on the cover, but at its core it is a tale of two lonely, heartsick people. Don’s wife has died in childbirth, and he drifts from town to town trying to fill up that huge emptiness in his heart. He meets Ginny, who reminds him of his late wife. Ginny’s husband Paul is one of the first men drafted in the Vietnam War (“a war nobody wanted” is how Whittington describes it here.) He is gone after only three blissful months of marriage, leaving Ginny alone and despondent, aching to be held. Don wants to hold her. We learn from David Wilson that this story was also sold to DARING ROMANCES, and PASSION BURNED is a romance, spiced up a just a little and passed off as a sleazy paperback. Don may be screwed up emotionally, but all the women in the book want him. The way he is described we imagine he has a manly voice as deep as Cal Meacham in THIS ISLAND EARTH…

Whittington - Taste of Desire

Or Taste of Desire:

Using the same logic that states that a great writer churning out a novel a month for three years is bound to write some clunkers, it follows that he should write some great books too. Several of the hardboiled stories on this list approach that designation, but THE TASTE OF DESIRE is a surprise because it is not a mystery, not a hardboiled murder yarn. But it is a fine story. On our previous catalog, writing about a book called FIRES OF YOUTH, I proposed a theory that certain “sleazy” paperback originals, if reprinted by a prestige publisher with a different title, would be hailed as great literature and win awards. THE TASTE OF DESIRE is one of those paperbacks. Involving and professionally written, this is a story about a country high school boy named Calder Fenton and his beloved hound dog Fanny. Calder’s Dad is a no-account drunk. Calder falls for the rich landowner’s daughter Lu Ann, who spends winters in Cottonseed County. Whittington never names the state this takes place in, but the nearest big city is Jacksonville.

Whittington - Dexter Blood orgy

And this:

guy drops his girlfriend off for some shopping at a department store. He waits in the car. She never comes back out. Cornell Woolrich wrote stories like this called “All at Once, No Alice” and “You’ll Never See Me Again.” Harry Whittington wrote one too, but this is like Woolrich on crank. Harry wrote the tense mystery story called “The Crooked Window”, published by SHELL SCOTT MYSTERY MAGAZINE in 1965. That same year – apparently no one noticed this in 1965, and never noticed it until now – he expanded it as a fast-paced John Dexter Nightstand. The editors there retitled it BLOOD LUST ORGY, a very intriguing title until you read the book and notice there are no lust orgies and very little blood. But there is a gripping story, well told by a fine writer, and to tell you all the surprises and twists would only spoil your fun.

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