Sam King

Created by Raymond Banks (1918-1996)

SAM KING is a successful L.A. op with his own agency and an eye for the the finer things in life -- especially if they are curvy and draped in silks and satins. He makes no bones about it, either. He boasts (or at least his blurb does) that he's a "licensed roving Eye, operating out of Los Angeles", specializing in the recovery of "stolen goods -- preferably the kind measuring 36"-24"-36"."

Sure enough, along the way, he comes across a fair amount of bodies, some hot and some cold.

The blurb on the back of 1960's Meet Me in Darkness also boldly announced that "This is his first recorded case. It won't be his last."

It almost was. "Eye Sam King" only returned once, in 1961's The Computer Kill, but there's something so delightfully Mad Men sleazy/cheesy about the cover of that one I had to include it.

Of course, not everyone thinks such things are necessarily funny, or should pass without comment (see below).

UNDER OATH

  • "Whilst the beautiful illustrative cover meets the standard of other pulp-era detective novels, and Sam King is placed on a par with other detectives popular in the era in terms of his womanizing ways, the work utterly fails as a detective novel. With nonsensical plot turns, poor detective work, and no details that allow the readers to play along with the solving of the mystery, there is little in the work to keep a reader interested. That said, the novel does offer an interesting take on the ways in which patriarchal capitalism objectifies women."

-- Literary Ramblings (2015) on Meet Me in Darkness

NOVELS

Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith. Additional info from David Nobriga.


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