About This Issue

Our re-purposed cover this go-round, just in times for our twenty-third anniversary on April 1, 2021, comes from the March 1945 issue of Private Detective Stories.

I’m not even sure who painted it. H.J. Ward seemed like a likely suspect–he painted a slew of covers for Trojan’s Culture Publications, the publishers of Private Detective Stories, Spicy Detective, Spicy MysteryDan Turner, Hollywood Detective and all the rest.

But I guessed wrong. According to David Saunders’ pulpartists.com (a great site–check it out!), this particular cover was perpetrated by Richard Lillis, another artist who did plenty of cover work for Trojan, and in a long career, he ended up doing covers for Ace-High Magazine, Exciting Western, Popular WesternPrivate DetectiveDouble-Action Western, Fifteen Western Tales, .44 Western, Speed Detective, Thrilling Western andWestern Novel & Short Stories. He specialized in westerns, but fortunately for us, he managed to churn out a few memorable covers for the crime and detective pulps, as well.

And how are you doing?

As for us, well, we’re keeping busy. We’ve finally reclaimed our thrillingdetective.com domain, and are happily chugging along the WordPress Highway. We’ve even added a new feature, The Dick of the Day, to honour the occasion.

It’s no big whoops–I simply spotlight a private eye from the site every morning (well), posting the link for those of you who follow me on on Twitter (or you can just bookmark the page). If you’ve ever darkened our cyber doorstep before you already know the drill, and know what to expect.

If you’re a virgin to this site, welcome, and please allow us to introduce ourselves:

“If trouble is your business, murder is your meat or gumshoes are your glory, you picked a good time to drop in. This site is now twenty-two years old, which means it can now drink legally in every state of the union. Please browse responsibly.”

Me? Well, I’ve been working on The Big Move quite a bit lately–what else can I do? Right now, there’s no real rhyme or reason as to what gets moved here, and when — it’s all pretty much impulse and stream-of-consciousness, as I try to figure it all out. But don’t panic–we’ll get there. Likewise, don’t get your panties all twisted about us losing anything. We’re going to save it all. We’re simply tweaking and simplifying and updating it, moving things from one site to another. Yes, it’s taking a while, but it’s also sorta fun, as entries that haven’t been touched for years suddenly get tasered back to life, and decades-old typos and run-on sentences get slapped into submission (replaced, of course, by brand new typos and new run-on sentences).


For God’s sake, stay healthy. Be smart, be kind and stay indoors if you can. Vaccines are finally here, but it may take a while for them to make a difference, so in the meantime please listen to real news, listen to real doctors. Wash your hands. And think kindly upon those who are out there on the frontlines: cops, doctors, nurses (like my daughter), delivery people, clerks, pizza guys, EMTs, first responders and the like. They’re putting their lives on the line for you and me. They’re the real heroes in all this–not some pathetic, lying scumbag of an egomaniac whose train left the station months ago.

And for gawd’s sake, call your kids or your Mom. Call someone, tell them you love them.

Kevin Burton Smith

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