Strange Three by Louise Sherman (Saber Books, 1958)
The first Saber Book Sanford Aday published, after the success of his Fabian Books line. Along with the Fabians, this little novel was on trial for being indecent, but the jury did not find it so (they’d get Aday later as they did to Hamling, for sending obscene material through the mail).
This is also an early lesbian pulp. I have no idea if Louise Sherman is a real person, pen name, a mask for Aday…
It’s a bit of a goofy book, and sometimes hard to follow, but worth reading as a history of sleaze paperbacks and lesbian pulp fiction.
It opens with Floyd and Stella Langley getting ready to go out for the evening. They seem to be upper class in Burlington(VT?). Then suddenly Floyd dies. Seems he’s the third husband of hers to die mysteriously for no apparent reason. The cops think she’s murdering them and want to find out; the coroner, a family friend, does not think she is a killer.
The coroner’s son, Johnny Radford, is in love with Stella and always has been. e’s home from college. Stella loves him to but if he marries her, he may die too.
Johnny’s sister, Marcene, is a sexy vixen who never leaves the house. Johnny sees her sitting with her skirt up, no panties; he tells her and she flashes him her hoo-hoo, laughing. It’s too much. He goes to her bed that night. They make love.
Okay, it’s incest, but Marcene knows no other men but her brother and father. In fact she tells her father she’ll marry him or Johnny. She doesn’t seem to be playing with a full deck.
Stella is sexually attracted to Marcene. Stella is bi-sexual. She seduces Marcene just as she seduces Johnny and soon the three are having sex together — threesome incest!
Three strange people, indeed.
Funny at times, yes. But what the hell is going on?
The bad thing, as with all Saber/Fabian/Vega Books, is the cheap production value — the cheapest possible thin paper badly glued into a flimsy spine. All vintage books need care when reading them, but with a Saber of Fabian, extra extra care is required, and sometimes, as in the case of Orrie Hitt’s Love Princess, the type is too damn small.