Sunday, February 7, 2016


Paul Stahr's cover isn't the most dynamic Argosy has run, but it rightly calls attention to one of Robert Carse's Foreign Legion stories. Foreign Legion is one of my favorite pulp genres (and you can find many samples of it at this blog), and while Georges Surdez is the undisputed master of that genre it's a close race, as far as I'm concerned, between Carse and J. D. Newsom for runner-up. Carse was just great at tough stories of endurance under stress; he could do prison or Devil's Island stories just as well. Until he started to get romantic and propagandistic at the end of the 1930s, Carse could hardly do wrong, and one of his novelets will likely put an Argosy or other pulp on my shopping list. This one is in the middle of a Frank Richardson Pierce serial, which probably is another plus, and another serial featuring J. U. Geisy and Junius B. Smith's Semi-Dual, a Persian occult investigator whose adventures had been appearing since 1912. Ralph Milne Farley wraps up yet another serial while William Corcoran starts a two-parter, The Death Ride, and gets a self-profile in the occasional "Men Who Make the Argosy" column. Lt. John Hopper, James Perley Hughes, Harold Bradley Say and John H. Thompson contribute short stories. I'm not sure if that adds up to "Action Stories of Every Variety," but it probably comes quite close.

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