I’ve been both dreaming and dreading reading this book, after years of experience reading other stories by him, under other aliases….
“Killer on the Run” was published under the alias ‘Buck Toler’ by Everybody’s Books (1944).
Cover art is attributed to what appears to read “Church.” However, glancing through the FreeBMD website shows nobody born, married, or died with such a surname.
Thus, an illustrator I know zilch about…. (Do you?)
The alias was utilized by Harold Ernest Kelly, one of two brothers operating the outfit.
Kelly had paid severely a couple years earlier for writing obscene books, under the alias of Darcy Glinto. The name failed to reappear until after World War Two ended. In the meantime, Kelly created several new aliases in which to freely operate.
Only three other books were published under the Buck Toler pseudonym:
- The Bronsville Massacre (Mitre Press, 1943)
- It’s Only Saps That Die (Everybody’s Books, 1944)
- Tough on the Wops (Everybody’s Books, 1944-1945)
The hideout of Rudolph Max Kling, otherwise referred throughout the novel as Killer Kling,
is raided by the police and his entire outfit is busted. Kling escaped and is at a roadhouse
listening to the news over the radio, when his moll, Varia Rader, struts in, and informs Kling that they need to scram. The Feds are outside set to raid the joint, which, they do. Chaos ensues as they seek to escape the clutches of the law. By the third page Kling has already snapped a bullet into the belly of one agent and pistol-whips another two pages later.
They escape by jumping in the backseat of a customer’s car. Giving the innocent bystanders the OK to leave, the owner of the car clambers in and receives the cold steel welcome of a hollow barrel kissing his nape hungrily clamoring for blood. The feller doesn’t argue and taking instructions like a sap, drives the pair of hoodlums to safety. His reward? Yeah, page 9, read it, ya mug! His Colt revolver pumps a slug into the man’s gut. They make merry with his set of wheels until the auto becomes too hot to handle. They skip across the country, attempting numerous escape routes along the way: other autos, a train, a plane, etc. You get the idea.
Kling is mostly led (or, rather, influenced) by the intelligent and gorgeously stunning Varia Rader. She boasts more than just looks. She is pure evil, going so far as to coldly walking up to a cop and punching a hole through his skull in a hotel room to save Kling. Remorse? Nah. She flits throughout the book with a psychotically sinister smile and knows how to turn on the sensual juices when necessary.
If you pervs wants some sex, this isn’t the book for you. It’s pure, hardcore, unadulterated blood-and-thunder killer shit for you. What’s more, there are no page breaks, no chapter, nothing to give you relief. Kelly pounds Kling and Rader mercilessly upon you, until the very end, when they finally meet their match near the Mexican border in a Federal agent that uses his brain more than any other agent or back-town wayward law-preaching hick had thus far.
But boy, do they get their man (and woman) ???
I’m not tellin’!!!