I love pulp noir characters of the 20s & 30s: Conan the Barbarian (created by Robert E. Howard), Philip Marlowe (by Raymond Chandler), the Continental Op and Sam Spade (Dashiell Hammett). However, I detest the sexism, racism, and homophobia that plagued books of this era. Happily, Pro Se Press is producing “New Pulp” books that retain the compelling storytelling of the older works without the offensive bigotry.
My favorite stories in the collection:
- “Mtimu” by Charles R. Saunders features a Black Tarzan-like character (Mtimbu) and two strong women who battle a big-game hunter trying to capture Mtimu.
- “Dillon and the Alchemist’s Morning Coffee” by Derrick Ferguson is a rollicking tale of a mercenary and a spy who team up to thwart evil villains bent on world domination. The clever banter between these two characters is an absolute delight!
- Gary Philips writes a face-paced tale of a boxer who gets entangled in a mystery involving a freakish cult in “Decimator Smith and the Fangs of the Fire Serpent.”
- “Drums of the Ogbanje” is a rescue adventure by Mel Odom involving evil slave traders and eldritch sorcery.
- Kimberly Richardson’s “Agnes Viridian and the Search for the Scales” features a female protagonist embroiled in a conflict involving Egyptian gods.
- “The Hammer of Norgill” by Tommy Hancock is an imaginative tale of the legendary contest between John Henry and the steam drill, and John Henry’s after-death adventure.
Black Pulp is a fun read despite these two stories, especially for anyone interested in “New Pulp.”