Friday, August 1, 2014

Forgotten Books: FFB Hijacked by WWC!

Sad but true. I had a forgotten book read and was set to yap about it, but preparations for tomorrow's Willamette Writers Conference got in the way. Along with the infamous Cap'n Bob Napier and many of the usual suspects, I'll be working the Pitch Practice room again. Gritty details to follow.

Monday, July 28, 2014


The engraving on this gun (from Wyandotte, PA, natch) is identical to that on the Hopalong Cassidy pistol posted HERE. But the cool things about the Red Ranger are the two different grips. There's also a gold model with red swirl grips, which we'll see further down the trail. 

More mighty Cap Guns HERE.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Toy Soldier Saturday: MPC RINGHAND GIs

I mentioned these GIs when I posted the MPC Spacemen a couple of weeks ago (HERE). Those spacemen figures were made from these same molds. They were just cast in different colors and given different accessories. 

MPC accessories also sometimes did double duty. The pick and shovel seen below were carried by the Ringhand Pirates too (HERE). 

More little plastic guys HERE.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Forgotten Books: THE CONVERTIBLE HEARSE by William Campbell Gault (1957)

This is the third book in the Brock Callahan series, and the third Brock Callahan I've read within the last thirty days. As I hope I conveyed last week, I enjoyed Day of the Ram quite a bit, so dived right into this one. Maybe I shouldn't have.

The Convertible Hearse is a good enough book. Brock digs into the murder of one of L.A.'s sleazier used car salesmen, continues his love/hate relationship with police and his hate/hate relationship with hoodlums, and continues to find himself not quite suited to his new profession of private investigator. In other words, it's more of the same, only this time without the pro football angle that made Day of the Ram so interesting. The only new thing here is that Brock's girlfriend Jan gets pissy early in the book and stays that way until late in the book, giving him another reason to feel sorry for himself.

My problem with Brock, I suspect, is that he's not Robert B. Parker's Spenser, and after umpteen readings of that series I tend to judge all other detectives against Spenser's standard. On the Spensermeter, Brock is just too polite, too cautious, too serious and too unsure of himself. You know, more like a real human being.

For me, that problem is easily solved. I'll just read another Spenser book (again). Maybe two. Then something completely different. And one of these days, when I'm in the mood for a nice guy detective again, I'll hunt up my copy of the next Callahan book.