Saturday, January 12, 2019

The Spider Slaughter, Incorporated

Originally slated to appear in The Spider Magazine in the 1940s, "Slaughter, Incorporated" was ultimately shelved when that magazine was cancelled. Never before published directly from author Donald G. Cormack's original manuscript, this edition has been faithfully reconstructed as an exact copy of the never-published February 1944 issue of The Spider Magazine, complete with vintage interior illustrations. In addition, The Spider: Slaughter, Incorporated (Facsimile Edition) marks the first publication of the never-before-published lost Red Finger story, "Red Finger and the Murder Trio," penned by Arthur Leo Zagat. Also including a story by longtime Spider author, Norvell Page. Rounded out by an introduction by Spider scholar, Will Murray, The Spider: Slaughter, Incorporated (Facsimile Edition) is the most important pulp publication of the year.

The Spider Slaughter, Incorporated (Pulp Reprint)
By Grant Stockbridge (Donald G. Cormack)
Altus Press
ISBN #978-1618273178
Price $19.95 (Paperback)
96 Pages
Rating 5-Stars

This was the last Spider novel written in 1943 for Popular Publications, scheduled for publication February 1944. It was obvious that PP had decided to drop the series, as the main author, Norvell Page, was working for the government now. They had hired Donald G. Cormack to write the final entry, but the series ended before Slaughter, Incorporated was published. There wasn’t much of a plot; it was all about the ending. The Spider and Richard Wentworth in a fight to the death. It was a plot to kill The Spider once and for all, and as the story ends we see The Spider dead and Richard Wentworth standing victorious above him. Even Police Commissioner Kirkpatrick buys the finale. I had read this story years ago when Robert Weinberg published it in paperback under the title of Blue Steel.

It took many years, but Altus Press has finally published this important novel in the style of the old pulp magazines, including interior artwork, with short stories in the back pages. One of the short stories is an unpublished Red Finger story that was rejected during the pulp period, Red Finger And The Murder Trio, so readers are not getting just one unpublished story, but two in this lost volume featuring The Spider. There is also a Norvell Page and Wayne Rogers short story in the back. This book is a must for any pulp fan, and highly recommended.

Tom Johnson



  1. Very nice. I enjoy pulp fiction. I have three volumes of weird science, beautiful hardcover edition. Each has 24 stories published between the 40's and 50's. I'm kind of sad that I have only the last one to read now. I will try to find other volumes to purchase through Amazon.