mine arrived just before xmas, and what a nice little present it was. first off, i bought a couple of Death Merchant titles years back and never got round to them - i think they're in a box somewhere, and i really must try and find them as it sounds a completely barmy series... i do worry for mr decker's psychological health, reading so much macho right-wing rubbish that makes no sense. does he, i wonder, wander the streets of Hamburg dressed like Huggy Bear with a stake in one hand and a Mauser in the other, looking for seventies hookers to save from a fate worse than death while wanting to clean the streets and revive the frozen head of Richard Nixon?
ahem... anyway, some great stuff on Panther. a very interesting imprint in the late sixties as they also did a while range of serious novels - the kind of socially aware stuff that tried to be important and break barriers while just ending up completely time-bound. all of these had GREAT photo covers, and in the nineties seemed to turn up all the time in charity shops. some were good, some fascinating for all the wrong reasons, and all were snapshots of the time. and all have, stupidly, returned to the charity shops from whence they came many years back.
the best thing about it was the Bulmer stuff, though. sterling work from mr Decker (back from cleaning the streets of scum, no doubt, and relaxing with a nice bit of sci-fi). because he was slighly older, and because he was less loud and obviously charismatic than some, he does tend to get overlooked, but he's one of the few writers to span that early fandom/pulp/mushroom jungle era and the seventies/eighties pulp explosion while still selling across the board. the only writer around as long i can think of offhand is Ted Tubb, and he remained old school.
another cracking issue. i won't repeat myself, and will leave it at that. well done justin, the quality never slips.
and in response to a request (it's my dependent psychology), i shall work on a steve francis/hank janson piece for some point in the next few months. with lots of reference to steve holland - i'll say it already, but anyone reading the piece when it emerges will be directed to his many writings on the subject.