Archive for Rader art

Morals Charge by Paul Hunter (Midwood F101, 1961)

Posted in Midwood Books, Paul Rader, pulp fiction, Vintage Sleaze Paperbacks with tags , , , , on August 10, 2010 by vintagesleazepaperbacks

This one sports one of my favorite Paul Rader covers.  It’s unknown who “Paul Hunter” is/was, a one-shot pen name never used again by Midwood.  It’s well-written.

Like Jodie in The Disciplined Daughter below, Nancy in Morals Charge is a constant victim of circumstance and her own sexual appeal.  The 18-year-old girl lives at home, a horrible home where her alcoholic, lazy mother steals the money she makes at a clerk job, even though she gives her mother half her pay; she’s been saving so she can leave home, maybe go to Hollywood or somewhere.  And then there is her equally alcoholic, fat mother’s boyfriend Frank, who is convinced Nancy is a floozy on the side, the way she dreses sometimes.

One day Nancy crosses paths with an old high school friend, Candy, who has nice clothes and seems to be doing well in New York.  Candy invites Nancy to a party her “boss” is throwing, and tells Nancy to dress sexy. Nancy meets the boss, Howie Mann, who runs illegal gambling parlors out of ritzy hotels — he’s a big powerful man connected to the mob and local politicians, and has girls on his crew…not exactly hookers, they are there as “shills” (playing tables with house money to lure men)…a girl in Howie’s crew can leave with a customer and make extra money, and it’s expected, Howie wants them to come back and blow their money.  Sometimes Howie requires his girls to sleep with VIPs…

Howie seduces Nancy that night and takes her virginity. She thinks there could be a romance but  he was testng her out, breaking her in.  He also gives her $50. She gets home late and her mother and Frank yell at her. They find the $50 and figure she’s hooking, and Frank decides he will pimp her out. Frank knocks out the mother and rapes Nancy, just two hours from her having lost her cherry to Howie.

Nancy leaves home and moves in with Candy and works for Howie. At first she doesn’t like having to be nice and fuck ugly old men with money, and Howie lays down the law. He has a sadistic woman who runs the girls, Jane, and an equally sadistic goon named “Fingers” who knows torture techniques by just using his fingers.  Nancy has a choice of the lesser two evils, at home being raped and pimped by Frank who takes her money, or in the city where she’s pimped out but makes money. She soon falls into the groove of being used for her body, but at least she’s making good money.

Frank tracks her down one day and breaks into her apartment and demands $1000, and that he will be her new pimp.  She gets Howie and his goons to work Frank over. Sweet revenge on the drunk fat fuck.

One night she gets arrested in a hotel with one of Howie’s VIPs. Since she’s not being paid, it’s not an actual “morals charge” for hooking, but the cops frame her with a bogus $50 payment.  Three of the four cops want to gang rape her but the third cop, a straight arrow, intervenes.  This cop also tells her she’s just a pawn to get at someone bigger. Here the cops make her a victim by depriving her of her rights for a phone call and lawyer, by physically  beating her up in interrogation.  But Nancy knows they want Howie so she doesn’t talk. Later, a lawyer tells her that the D.A. is after one of Howie’s friends in political office, and if she keeps mum all is well although she will have to take the fall and do some time to appease the D.A. who is pissed her arrest was botched.

An interesting novel that, while trash pulp fiction, does reflect a time in America where the rights of women, even though prostitutes, were trampled on without repercussion, and where physical force was par for the course during third degree questioning (although some will claim that still goes on, just look at Abu Gahrib).  Poor Nancy is just abused everywhere she goes — at home, at work, by the system. In jail and prison, she meets street hookers as young as nine, heroin addicts, thieves and lesbians.

A good read, and good  to own for the cover alone. In the next week or two, we want to to focus on vintage books with Issac Paul Rader covers…

Campus Jungle by Joan Ellis (Midwood Books #182)

Posted in Midwood Books, Vintage Sleaze Paperbacks with tags , , , , , , on August 26, 2009 by vintagesleazepaperbacks

Campus Jungle A

Camous Jungle B

Both editions of this Joan Ellis novel are sought after by colletors because of the Paul Rader covers.  I prefer thsi first one, Midwood #182 (1962), that wild sexy kiss, than the two students on the second edition.

Entering a Joan Ellis universe is quite different than the world of Orrie Hitt, Don Elliott/Loren Beauchamp, March Hastings, or Block’s Andrew Shaw/Sheldon Lord…Ellis’ world is playful, never too dark, never too serious.  It takes me a chapter or two to get into her books and enjoy her writing — the dialogue rings true, but her pretentious adjectives and attributions drive me nuts sometimes, like: “‘That’s a compromising remark,’ she flipped unconvincingly.”  Why not just “she said”?

Campus Jungle is more absurd and un-realistic (well, is any sleaze erotic movel?!) than, say, her other college novel, Faculty Wife, reviewed here, which treated infidelity and academic politics seriously.  Ravenwood College, a small Eastern institution somewhat like William and Mary or Bennington, has been voted by a NY newspaper as the country’s Most Typical College. But there are also rumors of wild sexual abandon, not only among students but students and faculty.

Seeking her Big Break, scandal, and to make a name for herself, Annie Winters, a cub reporter, has talked the New York Comet, a daily paper like the Observer or Post, to send her undercover to the college and find out if the rumors are true.  She’s 24 but can pass off as a 19-year-old undergrad.

Less than an hour after arriving, accepting a ride from the train station to campus by a 30-year-old man, Mike Raden (who owns a bookstore near campus and is a writer working on a novel), she instantly has sex with him — she doesn’t know the guy, doesn’t know what’s gotten into her, but she accepts his advances and fucks him…feeling slutty and bad, she then ignores him throughout the book, not wanting another date, but secertly has fallen in love with him.  She can’t get him off her mind although she rejects and evades him.

She also reveals her secret assignment to him, since he’s neither faulty nor student, and he tells her his secret: he bought the bookstore an year ago because he wants to exact revenge on one of the profdessors, also the Dean’s son, who got his sister pregnant. She died on the abortion table.  He finds it hard wanting to destroy the Prof because he has a small child and wife — he doesn’t want to ruin their lives.  But he’s looking for a way to expose the dirty dealings of the teahcers and the Dean here.

He thinks Anne’s assignment could be dangerous — these are faculty with power and much to lose.  He takes her into the woods and shows her a secret lust cabin where the old Dean, and some faculty, lure young women to and have sex.  He knows about the cabin from his sister’s diary.

Anne roommates with Rea in the girl’s dorm, an 18-year-old hellcat hellion nympho who wants to have sex with every male student and teacher on campus.  From Rea, Anne gets an idea how much sex is going on, and she is also hit on by many males professors.  Seems to the male profs, Ravenwood College is nothing more than a haven for an endless supply of new pussy each year, all 17-22 year olds.

Ellis - Campus Jungle

Rea has sex with a married prof she calls “The Beard” because of his thick bushy, pretentious and arty facial hair.

Anne hides in the love cabin, wiating with her camera, and soon the Dean and the Beard bring two teenage girls inside, and pay them $50 for a strip show and sex.  There’s booze and music. Anne jumps out, takes a photo like a tabloid papatrazzi, and runs away.

News travels around the day before the story hits the Comet.  The Dean is terrified, thretaening to sue the paper.  Anne doesn’t have her real name on the byline, just “Sorority Sister.”  The Beard finds out she’s the reporter and kidnaps her at gun point, but Mike the Bookstore owner save sthe day, when he jumps in on the Dean, his son, and the Beard forcing Anne and her roommate to get naked.

There’s a happy ending, of course — Mike proposes marriage and Anne says yes.  He will be her husband instead of some guy she had sex with an hour after meeting him.

One thing I like about Joan Ellis’ Midwoods are that they’re short and quick reads, you can get through one in an hour or two.  She has also done a great deal of Midwood doubles noevellas, as Ellis, Linda Michaels, and a few others names.  College campuses and high school girls seem to be her favorite subjects.

I am curious about her Beacon books as Jill Monte, like Thrill Clinic.

Beacon - Thrill Clinic

In light of the fact that this week and next, many colleges are opening up for the Fall term, and I will be at my office at UCSD a lot, I will be reading a lot of college-set sleaze books for the next month, along with lesbian titles, Don Elliots and Orrie Hitts.

Ellis - Campus Party
Ellis - Dangerous Age

Ellis -- Hellion

Faculty Wife by Joan Ellis (Midwood 32-588, 1966)

Posted in Midbook Books, Vintage Sleaze Paperbacks with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 2, 2009 by vintagesleazepaperbacks

Faculty Wife

I bought this book several months ago before I had read any Joan Ellis because I loved the Paul Rader cover — this disproportionate woman with a glazed, dazed barbie-doll look on her face, walking down a campus and all these frat boys and book-carrying academics staring at her ass and wolf-calling her.  This was a rader motif — men are often staring atRader - Sallywomen, or women at women, or women looking at themselves in the mirror…either, someone is observing someone, which draws our attention more to that person.

Of course, this is not what Faculty Wife is about. The wife in question is Fran, a former computer programmer (progressive for 1966!) who is married to a young consumer research wiz who has published key papers and has left the corporate world to teach. The college wants him for his published works — he does not have a Ph.D. and this pisses off the old researchers because he’s well-published and has world experience in the consumer trade field.

Boy this rings a bell — I have seen and experienced the same in literature, sociology, and anthropology: the fellow with no high degree but lots of publications and practical hands-on know-how frightens the dusty Ph.D.’s who can never get their dull work published.

Ellis must know this world too, because she writes with autheticity.

Ellis - Day in, Day OutMany of her books are set in college or high school, often dealing with confused, over-sexed girls age 17-19, such as Campus Jungle, Campus Kittens, The Cool Co-eds, After Class, High Shcool Hellion, Girl’s Dormitory, Odd Girl on Campus, Campus Pet, Campus Rebel, Campus Affair, etc.  Her other themes are young women in the entertainment industry (Flame, Redhead, Pleasure Girl, Daughter of Shame) and young women in the office work life (Temporary Secretaryl, Executive Sweet), and bored housewives (Day In, Day Out, Married Too Young, No Last Names).  She also wrote quite a few of the Midwood doubles and triples under Ellis, Michaels, and some other names.  Rader did the covers of most of Ellis’ books — they seemed a good match.

The hellion in Faculty Wife is not Fran but 19 year old Shirl, a spoiled rich girl who can’t stand to not get her way, or whatever man she wants, student or professor.  She is sleeping with a grad student and the drama teacher, and she has her gun sites on Craig, Fran’s husband.  A newlywed, he has no interest and that drives her crazy, so she sets up a situation and tries to break up the marriage.

Fran is gorgeous, but the students are not chasing her — other professors are, damn that she’s married.  Ellis captures the little petty sexual games within academic politics well.

The nice irony is that Fran, thinking Craig cheated on her with Shirl, goes out and sleeps with the drama prof as revenge…then she finds out Craig neverdid anything and Shirl made it up.  Fran shows no guilt or remorse.

The book ends in a strange, anti-climatic way. Country Girl did too. This seems to be Ellis’ style — a sorta New Yorker-ish literary trick: dangling the slice-of-life ending…

Joan Ellis is really Julie Ellis, who wrote under other pen names for other houses, but mostly Midwood as Joan and Linda Michaels.  Here is an excerpt from an interview with Lynn Munroe:

LM: What pen names did you use?

Julie Ellis: I was Joan Ellis and Linda Michaels for Midwood. I was Jill Monte for Beacon and Domino, and Susan Richard at Paperback Library. My daughter is Susan, my son Richard. Susan Marvin became Susan Marino for one book when an editor at Avon wanted an Italian name on a book. I was Allison Lord and Jeffrey Lord. And I did some paperback originals under my own name before going hardcover/softcover with Simon & Schuster in 1975.

LM: I found some of your books at my local used bookstore in the romance section.

Ellis: I’ve never written paperback romances. Today the term “romance novels” is being widely expanded. I’ve done multigenerational novels, historicals, and romantic suspense.

I will be reading Girl’s Dormitory and Campus Jungle next.

Ellis - Campus Jungle

Girls Dorm