• 1/10 The Black Angel by Cornell Woolrich
    The fourth of six novels in Woolrich's 'Black' series, The Black Angel is one of only two published by the Crime Club. The other was The Black Path of Fear.

    The Black Angel by Cornell Woolrich
  • 2/10 The Twister by Edgar Wallace
    The Crime Club published first US editions of many popular British crime authors. Edgar Wallace is one of the best known.

    The Twister by Edgar Wallace
  • 3/10 Cabbages and Crime by Anne Nash
    "Two florists become kennel keepers with murder thrown in for good measure!" With jacket blurbs like that, no wonder the Crime Club was so popular.

    Cabbages and Crime by Anne Nash
  • 4/10 Creep, Shadow! by A. Merritt
    Though not considered one of Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Famer A. Merrit's best, Creep, Shadow! has a fantastic cover.

    Creep, Shadow! by A. Merritt
  • 5/10 Death Demands an Audience by Helen Reilly
    Of Reilly's 33 Inspector Christopher McKee novels, 11 were published by the Crime Club.

    Death Demands an Audience by Helen Reilly
  • 6/10 The Hammersmith Murders by David Frome
    David Frome was one of two pen names used by American author Zenith Jones Brown. Mrs. Brown also published as Leslie Ford in the UK.

    The Hammersmith Murders by David Frome
  • 7/10 Hooch by Charles Francis Coe
    "A Novel of Rum Racketeers" - one of the first mob novels, perhaps?

    Hooch by Charles Francis Coe
  • 8/10 Murder in Miniatures by Sam Merwin, Jr.
    Murder in Miniatures was Merwin's first published novel. The American writer went on to write more mysteries and some science fiction. Using female pseudonyms, he even wrote a few romance novels.

    Murder in Miniature by Sam Merwin, Jr.
  • 9/10 The Puzzle of the Happy Hooligan by Stuart Palmer
    Hildegarde Withers, Stuart's spinster schoolteacher/amateur sleuth, has been described as a more comic - and caustic - American version of Agatha Christie's Miss Marple.

    The Puzzle of the Happy Hooligan by Stuart Palmer
  • 10/10 The Sad, Sudden Death of My Fair Lady by Stanton Forbes
    This Stanton Forbes novel from 1971 is a great example of the Crime Club's later jacket designs.

    The Sad, Sudden Death of My Fair Lady by Stanton Forbes

The Crime Club was an imprint of Doubleday Publishing that specialised in adult crime fiction and mysteries. Populated with larger-than-life criminal masterminds, debonair detectives, and more than a few dames in distress, the books were extremely popular as pure, escapist entertainment.

Operating from 1928 until 1991, the Crime Club published an astounding 2,492 titles from both new and established authors, including Isaac Asimov, Patricia Highsmith, Ruth Rendell, Georgette Heyer, Cornell Woolrich, and Margery Allingham, among many more. The Crime Club may best be remembered for publishing the first U.S. editions of Leslie Charteris's The Saint series and the Fu Manchu series by Sax Rohmer.

Despite the name, the Crime Club didn't operate as a book club in the traditional sense. Of the several titles published every month, the Crime Club Jury would select that month's outstanding story. Members would receive the monthly selection a few days before it became available at bookshops or libraries but it was always of exactly the same quality - and that quality was extremely high. Crime Club books were known for high-grade paper and quality binding, with black cloth covers and blood-red text. The colour scheme was reversed for club members' monthly selections - red cloth covers and black text.

Collectors covet vintage Crime Club books not only for their content and their impressive list of authors, but also for their eye-catching dust jackets. Colourfully illustrated in styles ranging from Art Deco to surrealist, the dust jackets were designed by such notable names as Boris Artzybasheff, Andy Warhol, Vera Bock, Russell Patterson and Edward McNight Kauffer.


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