Great moments in pulp fiction: "Lady, That's My Skull"

Cover scan link.

John Elmslie of Toronto shares this in the Boing Boing Flickr pool and writes,

Vintage paperback. "A Harlequin Book", Toronto, 1951. So Harlequin was publishing more than romances in 1951. The original paperback book is quite faded looking. The scanner pepped it up quite well, even though I hadn't asked it to. I'll have to look into that. :)


  1. “Lady, That’s My Skull” came out under at least two other imprints.  In addition to Harlequin, it came out under “Phantom Books”, and “Hangman’s House.”   I have no clue as to why or if this was a common practice in the pulps.

    1.  When I read that title, I couldn’t help but think of the movie Brain Dead (starring the two Bill’s — Paxton and Pullman, and written by Charles Beaumont) where a street person comes up and starts harassing a scientist carrying a brain in a jar saying: That’s my brain! You’ve got my brain!!! I love this movie. It nearly makes sense all the way through until you get to the end and go: Wha? Wait a minute. Musta missed something…. You get the same reaction EVERY time you watch it. At least, I do. I have lost track of how many times I’ve seen this. Oh, and Bud Cort is in it also. The original D.O.A. is about as fractured as this film and both of them bear repeated viewings just because they are impossible to put coherently together once finished. Sorta like new films each time :)

  2. Fun fact, Carl Shannon the author of this book, was the maternal grandfather of Cameron Crowe, the author of Fast Time at Ridgemont High. Remember that classic Sean Penn line, “Dude, that’s my Skull?” what do you think that line came from?
    So now you know, the rest of the story…
    Good day!
    (oh, by the way, the above comment is not meant to be a factual statement)

      1. So, information is just a theory, like gravity? Just consider that evolution is alot like evil lotion. LOL ( <–not Laugh out loud)

  3. A Harlequin VP gave a talk to a small writing class I was in (years ago while attending college in Toronto).

    One story he told was that the wife of a small struggling publisher suggested that he might print these English romance novels she was reading. He approached the company to get the Canadian rights, and they gave him the North American rights.

    Followed by PROFIT!

    It does suggest before then they published other things…

  4. Is there any way to read this aside from picking up a vintage copy on ebay?

    I tried the *AHEM* usual suspects but turned up blank.

  5. “I need it to keep my hat off my shoulders.”

    According to Wikipedia,  “For its first few years, the company published a wide range of books, all offered for sale for 25 cents. Among the novels they reprinted were works by Agatha Christie, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, James Hadley Chase, and Somerset Maugham.”

Comments are closed.