Seduction of the Innocent

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Overview

It's 1954, and a rabble-rousing social critic has declared war on comic books - especially the scary, gory, bloody sort published by the bad boys of the industry, EF Comics. But on the way to a Senate hearing on whether these depraved publications should be banned, the would-be censor meets a violent end of his own - leaving his opponents in hot water.  

Can Jack Starr, private eye to the funny-book industry, and his beautiful boss Maggie unravel the secret of Dr. ...

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Seduction of the Innocent

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Overview

It's 1954, and a rabble-rousing social critic has declared war on comic books - especially the scary, gory, bloody sort published by the bad boys of the industry, EF Comics. But on the way to a Senate hearing on whether these depraved publications should be banned, the would-be censor meets a violent end of his own - leaving his opponents in hot water.  

Can Jack Starr, private eye to the funny-book industry, and his beautiful boss Maggie unravel the secret of Dr. Frederick's gruesome demise?  Or will the crackdown come, falling like an executioner's axe...?

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Those who like their parody broad will best appreciate Collins’s third entry in his history of comic books trilogy (after 2008’s Strip for Murder). In 1954, psychiatrist Werner Frederick (the fictional alter ego of Fredric Wertham, author of the original Seduction of the Innocent) launches a crusade against comic books for their supposed glorification of violence and corrupting sexual imagery. In so doing, he rains on the parade of New York City’s Starr Syndicate, responsible for such comics as Wonder Guy, Batwing, and Amazonia. Despite efforts to derail Frederick in advance of congressional hearings on the future of comic strips, the threat to the syndicate remains, and leads to a murder that PI Jack Starr, its chief troubleshooter, must sort out. The gathering of suspects at the end for the reveal will please golden age mystery fans, but the total package falls short of Collins’s best. New illustrations in the classic EC style by Terry Beatty are a plus. (Feb.)
From the Publisher
"Collins masterfully blends fact and fiction...transcends the historical thriller." - Jeffery Deaver

"Violent and volatile and packed with sexuality...classic pulp fiction." -USA Today

"Collins' witty, hard-boiled prose would make Raymond Chandler proud." -Entertainment Weekly

"Max Allan Collins blends fact and fiction like no other writer." - Andrew Vachss

 "Collins makes it sound as though it really happened." - New York Daily News

"Few people alive today can tell a story better than Max Allan Collins. SEDUCTION OF THE INNOCENT is a great, page-turning read that is beautiful to look at and serves as another proud addition to the Hard Case Crime library." – Bookreporter

“A solid tale of crime, greed, and murder with a tasty dash of sequential art history in the mix.” – Fanboy Comics

“Everything I would ever want in a detective novel.” – Geek Hard

“When a book manages to keep me reading from beginning to end, I consider it a job well done, but when I sit there for hours on end reading because I can’t put it down, that’s when I consider a book truly good and Seduction of the Innocent falls happily in that second category.” – Geekenstein

“A fast read, hedged by a bevy of hilarious characters and culminating in a delicious ‘whodunit.’” – Noir Whale

“Any fan of noir, pulp fiction or comic books will appreciate Seduction of the Innocent.” – Pop Cults

“Hats off to Max Allan Collins for this phenomenally entertaining piece of historical fiction, and Terry Beatty, for the classic, inspired EC style art work.” –Comic Hype

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780857687487
  • Publisher: Titan
  • Publication date: 2/19/2013
  • Series: Hard Case Crime
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 614,968
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Max Allan Collins is the bestselling, award-winning author of Road to Perdition, the graphic novel that inspired the Oscar-winning movie starring Paul Newman and Tom Hanks, and of the acclaimed Nathan Heller series of historical hardboiled mysteries. Also a filmmaker himself, Collins' films include the documentary Mike Hammer's Mickey Spillane.

Terry Beatty is the popular comic book and newspaper comic strip illustrator who, together with Max Allan Collins, created Ms. Tree, the longest-running private eye comic series in comics history. Beatty's work has also graced numerous other comics, including Batman, and has appeared in magazines such as Scary Monsters. Most recently he was named the newest illustrator of the long-running comic strip The Phantom, and collaborated with Max Allan Collins on the graphic novel Return to Perdition, sequel to Road to Perdition.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 16, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    The last volume in this trilogy on the comic book industry is se

    The last volume in this trilogy on the comic book industry is set in the 1950’s, when the furor over the rising amount of crime, violence and sex rose to a roaring peak, highlighted by a Senate committee’s hearing and ending with the establishment of a “Decency Code.” It brings back the dynamic duo, Jack and Maggie Starr, owners of a distribution company of comic strips to newspapers. The story is a loosely disguised history of the leaders and events surrounding the industry at the time, and is based, to a great extent, on the crusade led by Dr. Frederic Wertham, portrayed by Dr. Werner Frederick in the novel.

    The author, a long-time scripter of the Dick Tracy newspaper comic strip, certainly knows his subject and the players, and gives an excellent rendition of the real-life story, while writing a murder mystery as only he can, or his mentor, Mickey Spillane did. Adding spice are illustrations heading each chapter, created by Terry Beatty (Batman, The Phantom).

    Max Alan Collins, among his many specialties, latches on to an historical event or subject, and then creates a fictionalized story that grasps the reader’s attention throughout. “Seduction” is no exception, and is recommended.

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  • Posted March 29, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Another Great Max Collins Read

    Max Allan Collins does not disappoint in any of his books, and "Seduction of the Innocent" continues in that tradition. A good book about the history of comic book publishing wars, with a good plot twist included. Another great Hardcase Crime story!

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