Chinatown Death Cloud Peril

by Paul Malmont

Ultimately I liked this book, but it didn't get anywhere close to interesting until somewhere around page 250. Most of the characters seamed rather flat to me, but it's pulp so I wasn't at all surprised or offended...since I'm not actually familiar with the pulp genre it's only a guess that characters are traditionally 2-dimensional.

The story is set in the the 1930's among the small clique of authors known as pulpsters. Malmont creates an atmosphere of reality in the midst of his fantastical, improbable plot by using real life authors of the day. Walter Gibson, writer of The Shadow, and Lester Dent, writer of Doc Savage follow seemingly unrelated clues and mysteries that ultimately bring them and their retinues together for one bone chilling climax. It's a story of death, government corruption, Chinese gangsters, revenge, maniacle ambition, and horrifying chemical warfare.

Everyone in my book group who read this one liked it. The few who hadn't quite finished it are looking forward to it and the one who didn't have time to pick it up has borrowed a copy. All agreed that the most interesting character was Norma Dent, Lester Dent's wife. We were all quite impressed with inclusion or mention of their real life contemporaries such as L. Ron Hubbard, Joe Kavelier, Robert Heinlein, Louis L'Amore, Orson Wells, and H.P. Lovecraft

Posted by jfer at August 22, 2007 12:06 AM

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