Thursday, December 2, 2010

FORGOTTEN BOOKS: MEET MOROCCO JONES!


FORGOTTEN BOOKS: MEET MOROCCO JONES!

JACK BAYNES (BERTRAM B. FOWLER)

I’m admitting upfront I’d never heard of Morocco Jones until just recently. While I wouldn’t want to put my knowledge of the mystery field up against some of the experts in the field (like George Kelley or Bill Crider, etc.), it’s still fairly rare I’m completely unaware of a character or author out of the past – I might not have read them, but I have at least a passing acquaintance.

Not so with tough Chicago P. I. Morocco Jones, who until now has flown complete under my radar.

Morocco has one of the coolest P.I. names I’ve come across, and it’s clear his creator wanted Morocco to out hammer his literary competition with the other cool name – Mike Hammer. Obviously, despite Morocco’s best attempts to take on the Syndicate’s goons with his fists and blazing .45, that never happened.

MEET MOROCCO JONES

An exciting new personality takes his place among the heroes of tough guy fiction.

Meet Morocco Jones – whose mind is as sharp as the edge of lightning –whose fists are as deadly as a forty-five – and whose morals – well, the less said the better . . .

“You’ve got a helluva nerve, Morocco!”

Two hoods lay crumpled in a heap on the floor. “Did you bring me around just to look at this garbage? Why didn’t you just kill them and toss them out the window?”

“Later,” answered Morocco softly. “They’re a present from the Syndicate. The organization must be hard up for laughs to send out a couple of punks like this.”

The Syndicate wasn’t fooling.

But neither was Morocco Jones.

And you just have to love the pure pulpiness of the following back cover copy from the last book in the series.

MOROCCO JONES IN THE CASE OF THE GOLDEN ANGEL

MOROCCO JONES . . .

The name was whispered in secret . . . in awe . . . in terror, from Budapest to Bangkok, from Copenhagen to Cairo to Kansas City, Mo.

MOROCCO JONES . . .

The toughest, smartest operator ever to work and survive the toughest racket of the all – overseas counterespionage.

MOROCCO JONES . . .

The guy who rocked the Syndicate on its heels in Chicago, the guy who took Border City’s underworld apart with his bare hands.

So when the wheels of the Syndicates newest and deadliest racket – ‘industrial protection’ – began to steam-roll over the quiet town of Pacific Port, the citizens knew what to do – S.O.S MOROCCO JONES.

Yeah, baby, that’s exactly what I would do . . . Morocco Jones is probably rightfully forgotten, yet there is something about the over the top pulpy style of the novels I enjoyed. Also the Fawcett/Crest covers are cool enough the be worth collecting.

THE MOROCCO JONES NOVELS

MEET MOROCCO JONES – IN THE CASE OF THE SYNDICATE HOODS (1957)

The toughest guy you ever met – the toughest story you'll ever read.

HAND OF THE MAFIA (1958)

Morocco Jones challenges the power of the Syndicate in this tough-paced tale of murder, mayhem and mobsters.

THE PEEPING TOM MURDERS (1958)

Morocco Jones rips the lid off Hollywood's strangest and dirtiest racket.

MOROCCO JONES – IN THE CASE OF THE GOLDEN ANGEL (1959)

Mafia, murder, molls and mayhem in a tantalizing suspense novel.

5 comments:

Bill Crider said...

I read several of these many years ago, and I remember them as being a lot of fun. Now you've made me want to read one again.

George said...

Jack Baynes was the pseudonym of Bertram Baynes Fowler.

Evan Lewis said...

Cool!

Todd Mason said...

And with that name, I would consider a pseud, too...they look like they could well be fun...

Dave Womack said...

I read these way back in the early 60's. They had some coolest lines: "He watched with grudging admiration as (two guys ran around the front of a car to kill him);" or "His training began where the FBI training left off." However, now that I'm old I've found that when reread some of the books that I loved a a teenager I was sorely disappointed: a 70 year old mind sees things differently.