12 July 2011

Ontario Gothic Romance (with the scent of Brut)

Satan's Bell
Joy Carroll
Markham, ON: Pocket Books, 1976
190 pages

This review now appears, revised and rewritten, in my new book:
The Dusty Bookcase:
A Journey Through Canada's
Forgotten, Neglected, and Suppressed Writing
Available at the very best bookstores and through


  1. We had a woman who worked in our hospital cafe named Polly. And when I was an actor in Connecticut I did a show with a girl about five years younger than me who was named Polly. Her brother was named Buddy. These were not nicknames either. I think their parents were old time movie fanatics. So two Polly encounters in a half a century of living. Not a popular name at all, I'd say.

    $61.78 for an obscure paperback potboiler in only FAIR condition. Wow. I'll bet the cheap price does not include free shipping either.

  2. Brian:

    Thank you for the stolen hour of laughter I've just had reading your blog instead of writing my Atwood essay for school. It was utterly refreshing, not to mention heartening to see that you're still exploring such -- er -- fascinating material. I foresee many more hooky sessions spent at The Dusty Bookcase! I also look forward to reading your Glassco biography.

    Warmest wishes to your family. (Our youngest daughter turns two today; her sister is three.) I'm relieved to learn that you've departed V. and found a town worth living in.


    Wendy (Phillips) Wright
    Denman Island, BC

  3. John, add another US$6.50 shipping... for a 190-page mass market paperback.

    Wendy, nice to hear from you. I'm honoured to have hooked you. Cheers!

  4. I do appreciate the stark simplicity of the cover art and the tagline; something often missing from horror paperbacks.

    1. Very restrained, is it not. The title font never fails to remind me of the Avon Edgar Rice Burroughs paperbacks of the 'sixties.