Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Pocket Books 6042 (1960)

Title : The Case of the Angry Mourner
Author : Erle Stanley Gardner
Cover art : uncredited
N.Y. : Pocket Books, 1960. #6042. Fifth printing]

style **

 Erle Stanley Gardner was well served by Pocket Books’ cover art in the 1940s and 1950s. The cover design for 6042 is a knockout, featuring cheesecake art in the Barye Phillips/'Charles' style [but alas no artist is credited]. Totally or partially unclothed women behind see-through negligees, nightgowns or curtains* were a staple of vintage paperback cover art in the classic era. The present title is primo, presenting a curvaceous blonde behind some sort of scrim that provides her with the strategic covering.
  * One of the few examples of a woman being viewed in front of a see-through curtain is the rare dust jacket for the Pocket reissue of The Maltese Falcon (#268, 3rd printing, 1945, Stanley Meltzoff). The cover art rather cheekily depicts a partially unclad Brigid O'Shaughnessy in a scene from the novel which doesn’t appear in the movie. Permabooks later used this cover in an early 1950s printing.