Friday, November 7, 2014


Recently published by Anthony Tollin’s Sanctum Books, Doc Savage #77: Haunted Ocean & The Spook of Grandpa Eben [$14.95] reprints two novels by Laurence Donovan and Lester Dent (writing as Kenneth Robeson), as well as a new historical essay by the ever-informative Will Murray.

Donovan’s Haunted Ocean was first published in Doc Savage Magazine for June, 1936. Spooky enough to serve this book’s “Halloween” theme, the tale features an eerie villain who calls himself The Man of Peace. From the back cover:

Bizarre disappearance on the sea floor and a strange power blackout result in the President enlisting Doc Savage to investigate the Haunted Ocean.

The cover is by Walter Baumhofer, who painted the first Doc Savage cover and all of the next 42 covers for the magazine. This cover is his last. The interior illustrations are by Paul Orban.

Dent’s The Spook of Grandpa Eben is from the December 1943 issue of Doc Savage Magazine. From the back cover:

Why is a chemical company owned by Doc Savage providing substandard  products to the war effort? Doc, Monk and Ham go ghost hunting to solve the mystery of The Spook of Grandpa Eben.    

Murray’s essay should be of particular interest to comic-book fans. In it, he points similarities between Doc Savage novels written by Donovan and some early Superman stories.

As with other Sanctum Books editions - The Avenger, The Shadow and others - these Doc Savage double novels are entertaining journeys into the heroic fiction of the pulp era.  They’re wonderfully made books and I regularly despair I might never get around to reading all of them.  But what I can and will do is let you know about the new releases as they appear.  More Sanctum Books news is on the way.

© 2014 Tony Isabella

1 comment:

  1. I recently got an e mail from Bud Plant books. There is a new set of Omnibus editions which have ten Doc Savage novels in each book! It will feature the original covers and the James Bama paperback art. I was hoping to read more reviews on this particular set of books and if it's worth the $42 per volume they are asking for.