RE: RARA-AVIS: Shel Scot

From: Doug Bassett (
Date: 20 May 2002

--- "Anderson, Erick (ETW)" <> wrote:
> I've read, and really enjoyed, and early Shel
> Scott: Everybody Had A
> Gun. I picked up another, later one, the of which
> escapes me, but it didn't
> seem to have the same "je ne sais qua" as the other.
> I had to give it up
> after 20 pages or so. Have other RA's had a similar
> experience? What Scott
> titles should I be looking for? Please advise.
> Best Regards, Erick

Prather is IMO very hit-or-miss. He published an enormous number of Shell Scotts, and I've hardly read through them all, but I do remember really liking GAT HEAT; THE KUBLA KHAN CAPER; DOUBLE IN TROUBLE; and a book who's title escapes me, but involves Scott in a
"nudie movie" typical of the early Sixties.

I have yet to find what's said to be the best Scott, STRIP FOR MURDER.

I have a pet theory that Scott's best years were basically the early Sixties -- right as the sexual revolution was starting. Early books are good-humored but nothing really special; I haven't read anything past KUBLA KHAN but am under the impression that there was a drop-off in quality in later efforts.

He's sort of a Rat Pack figure, in some ways.


===== Doug Bassett

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