Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday's Forgotten Book: Leonard Gribble's Striptease Macabre

Leonard Gribble was a British writer of police procedurals and detective novels, with some westerns on the side. He's pretty much forgotten now, but I believe he enjoyed some success during his lifetime as his output was pretty big. This seems to be as much as there is out there in the web about him. There is an entry for him in the second edition of Twentieth Century Crime and Mystery Writers, but I'm not sure if it's in the later editions.

I tried to read the Finnish translation of Gribble's Striptease Murder, from 1967 (published originally by Jenkins), but with not much success. The book seemed at first interesting and it did give a nice picture of a British criminal life in the late fifties, adopting lots of slang expressions ("wide boy" especially), also with a good description of police work, but I couldn't get into the plot that involved smuggling and deceiving the police with the help of a slightly perverted nobleman. It may have been due to the Finnish translation, of course, but for some reason I believe this is wooden also in English.

Pictured is the cover of the Finnish paperback translation from 1968.

As for westerns, by the way, Gribble did them in three spans: first, under Landon Grant, in the thirties, then again in the early fifties, and then, as Lee Denver, in the late seventies and early eighties. His westerns as by Landon Grant were published in Finnish in a digest paperback series the name of which escapes me. I probably remember it the minute I shut the computer.


pattinase (abbott) said...

You are amazingly versed in non-Finnish literature.

Juri said...

Thanks, Patti - sometimes I think I'm too versed in just about anything. And not enough.

Paul D Brazill said...

Very good call! Weird n wonderful.