BEN SARTO – BRITISH PULP FICTION AT ASH RARE BOOKS

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BEN SARTO – BRITISH PULP FICTION AT
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BEN SARTO – BRITISH PULP FICTION

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“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS COMES TO PICCADILLY.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS COMES TO PICCADILLY.

London : Modern Fiction, [1942?]. First edition. The legendary Mabel Otis makes her first appearance in fiction: “Just under six feet tall, and every inch of it impressive “ – Giuseppe “Jews” Pellegrini “had never seen such a slap-up Society broad, except in technicolour on the screen. He never believed that such magnificent creatures could possibly exist except on celluloid”. The Otis gang hit London in a blaze of blood and dollars. Published from Modern Fiction’s N7 pre-1945 address and although the design of the upper wrapper has seemingly been altered to reflect a price change, the text on the rear wrapper reflects a country still very much at war. The evidence in the Modern Fiction Ltd. v Fawcett court case (1949) over rights in the Ben Sarto name make it clear that the book was written between December 1940 and June 1941, and first published shortly thereafter. The present copy certainly predates the British Library copy, which is dated to 1949 and has in any case been mislaid.
Crown 8vo (19cm). (160)pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers in a design by H. W. Perl – the earliest of at least three designs used for this title; somewhat chipped and worn; some marks; text a little tanned; a reasonable copy of a scarce survival. Just two copies of any edition (Bodleian and British Library) located in major libraries worldwide.

SOLD

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : CHICAGO DAMES.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : CHICAGO DAMES.

London : Modern Fiction, [ca.1943]. First edition : the variant with the plain lower wrapper. The United Ladies’ Club of Chicago – Dynamite Doll, Slappy Sal (not to mention her husband Jelly the Fish), Velvet Vi, Reno Doreena – but Anna Toplitski craves the “sharp, puncturing kiss” of the hypodermic syringe. It has become apparent from the details of the May 1949 “passing off” High Court hearing before Mr Justice Romer, in which Fawcett and his publisher, Edwin Turvey, sued each other over the rights in the “Ben Sarto” name, that many of the Sarto titles were first published consiserably earlier than has previously been supposed. Evidence produced at the trial over the surrender of rights in reprints suggests that the present title must have been in print prior at some time prior to the summer of 1944.
Crown 8vo (19cm). 128pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers – a typical H. W. Perl design of a blonde in clinging green; some very minor wear and creasing; a couple of short tears; the predominantly white wrappers lightly marked, with some faint splashing to lower wrapper; staples a little rusted, but overall a very good copy of a fragile production.

£50

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“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : CHICAGO DAMES.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : CHICAGO DAMES.

London : Modern Fiction, [ca.1943]. First edition : the variant with the plain lower wrapper. The United Ladies’ Club of Chicago – Dynamite Doll, Slappy Sal (not to mention her husband Jelly the Fish), Velvet Vi, Reno Doreena – but Anna Toplitski craves the “sharp, puncturing kiss” of the hypodermic syringe. It has become apparent from the details of the May 1949 “passing off” High Court hearing before Mr Justice Romer, in which Fawcett and his publisher, Edwin Turvey, sued each other over the rights in the “Ben Sarto” name, that many of the Sarto titles were first published considerably earlier than has previously been supposed. Evidence produced at the trial over the surrender of rights in reprints suggests that the present title must have been in print prior at some time prior to the summer of 1944.
Crown 8vo (19cm). 128pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers – a typical H. W. Perl design of a blonde in clinging green; a little worn, marked, and slightly creased; a couple of short tears; the predominantly white wrappers a little soiled; staples rusting; title-page creased, but a reasonable copy of a fragile production.

£40

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“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : HI-JACKER’S LADY.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : HI-JACKER’S LADY.

London : Modern Fiction, [ca.1945]. First edition. “Corner of Gamm-street, Bowery. Dusk. December day; snow atop distant skyscrapers; awful squelcy slush underfoot; overhead railway smashing flashes of electricity from ice-hard rails. Everything around furtive, glum, anti-law, on account of the cold douche of Prohibition”.
Crown 8vo (19cm). (128)pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers – a design by H. W. Perl; wrappers a little worn, slightly creased and a little frayed; acid-free tape repair at head; text a little spotted, mainly to prelims and edges; a reasonable copy of a difficult title. Just a single copy (British Library) located in major libraries worldwide.

£50

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“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS THROWS A COME-BACK.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS THROWS A COME-BACK.

London : Modern Fiction, [1947]. First edition. An early title in the Miss Otis series – the “ritzy racketeer”. One of the most memorable characters in all the pulp fiction of the period. “An experienced dame, you would say, looking at Miss Otis in her sun parlor; a dame who had got ‘it’ in overweight quantities”.
Crown 8vo (19cm). 128pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers – Miss Otis in a genial and languid pose by H. W. Perl; some very minor wear and faint marking to the predominantly white wrappers; slight creasing to lower wrapper, but overall a very good copy of a scarce title. Just two copies traced in major libraries worldwide (Bodleian and British Library).

£75

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“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : DUCHESS OF DOPE.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : DUCHESS OF DOPE.

London : Modern Fiction, [ca.1945]. First edition. Man returns to Idaho from the mountains of Chile to find his sweet young wife has killed herself having become a dope addict: an exposé of the American morphine, heroin and cocaine rackets. “Then there was Jacqueline; tall, slant-eyed, raven-haired, fiery, dynamic; packing a flashlook that would burn up almost any guy with desire. They called her ‘The Duchess of Dope’ ...”. One of the most successful of all the Modern Fiction titles.
Crown 8vo (19cm). (128)pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers – a wide-eyed, leggy and blood-stained Jacqueline in a design by H. W. Perl; some wear; short tears to upper wrapper; lower corner chewed; a few minor marks, but a good copy of a difficult title. Only the British Library copy located in all the major UK libraries.

SOLD

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS GOES UP.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS GOES UP.

London : Modern Fiction, [1947]. First edition. A murder in the Otis Restaurant – a revenge killing by a strange young man.
Crown 8vo (18cm). (128)pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers – a typical H. W. Perl design; some minor wear and creasing; a few slight marks; staples rusting; text faintly tanned, but overall a very good copy of a scarce and fragile item. Just a single copy (British Library) located in major libraries worldwide.

£75

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“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS GOES UP.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS GOES UP.

London : Modern Fiction, [1947]. First edition. A murder in the Otis Restaurant – a revenge killing by a strange young man.
Crown 8vo (18cm). (128)pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers – a typical H. W. Perl design; some minor wear and creasing; lower wrapper lightly marked; text slightly tanned, but a very good copy. Stamps of Simonite’s Book Exchange Service of Cannock Market on first few leaves and (very faintly) on upper wrapper. Just a single copy (British Library) located in major libraries worldwide.

£75

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“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : PINDAY AND THE GIRL SLAVERS.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : PINDAY AND THE GIRL SLAVERS.

London : Modern Fiction, [1947?]. First edition. Pinday Gotch, con-man, salesman, and tracker-down of derelict goods, is brought in to find the white slavers behind the Central Troupe Training Academy on 23rd Avenue. It has become apparent from the details of the May 1949 “passing off” High Court hearing before Mr Justice Romer, in which Fawcett and his publisher, Edwin Turvey, sued each other over the rights in the “Ben Sarto” name, that many of the Sarto titles were first published several years earlier than has previously been supposed. The manuscript of the present title was produced in court to support Turvey’s claim that he had himself made considerable alterations to Fawcett’s text. The title given on the cover is “Pinday and the White Slaver” (as is the running title on some of the text pages), the title under which the book was later reissued with a quite different cover design.
Crown 8vo (19cm). 128pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers; lightly worn and slightly frayed; a little marked and creased; a good and serviceable copy of a scarce title. No copy of this edition (and only the British Library copy of the later edition) located in any major library worldwide.

£75

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“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS HAS A DAUGHTER.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS HAS A DAUGHTER.

London : Modern Fiction, [1948]. First edition. Playing with his own name, Fawcett gives us cheapstore dressmaker Frank Driffield Tawfitt, who has taken a shine to the mysterious and alluring new partner in Manhattan’s Paradise Restaurant – Miss Otis has gone incognito.
Crown 8vo (19cm). 124,[iv]pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers – woman, gun, allure – a design by H. W. Perl; just a touch of wear to tips; a couple of tiny creases; staples rusted and discoloured, but otherwise a very good and clean copy. Just a single copy (British Library) located in major libraries worldwide.

£75

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“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : CITY OF SIN.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : CITY OF SIN.

London : Modern Fiction (London), [1952]. First edition. Rena falls for a European, but “she hadn’t seen anything of the world further east than Minneapolis”. Sarto “tears the veil from the activities of the army of White Slavers”.
Crown 8vo (19cm). 127.[i]pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers – unsigned, but evidently a design by Len Potts; spine chipped, darkened and split; wrappers a little marked and creased; edges a little spotted; text a little tanned; a serviceable copy of an uncommon title. Just a single copy (British Library) located in major libraries worldwide.

SOLD

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : THE OLDEST PROFESSION.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : THE OLDEST PROFESSION.

London : Modern Fiction, [1952]. First edition. “As usual with Sarto books, it is the result of personal observation, plus access to police records and secret news files ... an innocent young girl from the country finds herself caught up in the toils of a Manhattan exploiter – with tragic results. One big, breath-catching thrill from first word to last, but shot with sadness and regret”.
Crown 8vo (19cm). 127,[i]pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers – a design by Len Potts; slight wear at tips; creases, a short tear and some slight dicolouration to rear wrapper; text a little tanned, but still overall a very good copy. Just two copies (British Library and Monash) located in major libraries worldwide.

£100

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“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS DESIRES.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS DESIRES.

London : Milestone Publications, (1954). First edition. The seventh in the new series of Miss Otis titles – Mabie Otis covets a unique seven-thousand dollar Russian sable wrap.
Crown 8vo (19cm). (126),[ii]pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers (title misspelt 'disires’ on spine; slight chip at head; mild rubbing; a touch of dustiness; text a little tanned; a few leaves with small chips, but a better than average copy. Just a single copy (British Library) located in major libraries worldwide.

SOLD

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS MAKES HAY.

“SARTO, Ben” – [FAWCETT, Frank Dubrez, 1891-1968] : MISS OTIS MAKES HAY.

London : Milestone Publications, (1954). First edition. “The Otis prowess with her pearl-handled gat preserves her scorching personality – she’s a combination of guts and glamour, a gal who leaves 3-D pictures in the memory”. The eighth in the new series of Miss Otis titles.
Crown 8vo (19cm). 128pp. Original pictorial stapled wrappers; mild wear; a few marks and small spots, but overall a very good copy. No copy traced in any major library worldwide.

£50

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