Escapades of the Eel

Pulp Vault Reprint No. 3
















by Hugh B. Cave. Tattered Pages Press, Chicago, Il, 1997. Trade sized paperback, 224 pages. B&W illustrations from the original magazines. In 1936, renown pulp author Hugh B. Cave was contacted by his agent to write a series of stories for Spicy Publications. Cave, hoping to break into the "slicks," such as Saturday Evening Post, wrote the "Eel" stories under the pseudonym "Justin Case," and had them printed in all three magazine: Spicy Adventure, Spicy Mystery and Spicy Detective. "The Eel" was the hero of these tales, and 15 of them are reprinted in this book.

The stories are rather unique. They were, of course, erotic for the 30's, and are told in the first-person, present tense -- though our hero sometimes refers to himself in the third-person -- which makes him sound extremely vain. That was, obviously, exactly the impression the author intended to convey.

"Well, being at all times a gentleman, your humble correspondent, The Eel, naturally feels very sad about all this and does his best to make the young lady forget her troubles. If she will be unhappy for the rest of her life, beginning tomorrow, it is my duty, I feel, to let her know about love now so she will have something to look back upon. So I spend the next half hour or so building up memories for her."

Very entertaining.