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The Spider VS. The Empire State: The Complete Black Police Trilogy Paperback – July 15, 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 430 pages
  • Publisher: Age of Aces Books (July 15, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0982095031
  • ISBN-13: 978-0982095034
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #646,355 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Picked up a copy of this at PULPFEST in Columbus, Ohio, fresh from the printer...The folks at AGE OF ACES did a great job of collating these three SPIDER stories into a unified, collected whole. The book design is great; very dynamic and eye catching, and the insertion of interior art from the original pulp stories is effective and graphically arresting. This book is probably the best SPIDER trade paperback out there to date, thanks to designer Chris Kalb and publisher Bill Mann, two of the creative team behind AGE OF ACES. I recommend this, certainly to all fans of fast-paced, exciting pulp fiction and violent, over-the-top action, and most definitely to fans of THE SPIDER and Norvell Page. But then, they won't need my recommendation to snatch this up...Nice work, AGE OF ACES!
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Format: Paperback
The majority of long-time pulp readers and enthusiasts don't need a review to tell them who The Spider or Norvell Page are. The character has delighted and, let's face it, frightened pulp fans for decades and is showing no signs of slowing down.

To those pulp fans who may not be familiar with the trio of novels that comprise this volume, I say it is a MUST read. That's all you need to know.

Now for those new to the genre, who may not know what the heck this pulp fiction is that everyone is talking about and wants to find out, I say that this collection of novels is as good a place as any to start. Classic pulp fiction is a thrill ride you don't want to miss and Norvell Page was one of the best practitioners of the art form. What sets this trio of works apart from the vast majority of pulp novels is that they are connected and tell one complete story. Pulp novels normally were stand alone adventures one would follow from month to month. But the three in this book were a three-novel arc dealing with New York State being seized by a Nazi-like regime a year before the WW2 began. These types of multiple part epics are not unknown in the genre but are the exception rather than the rule.

Okay, enough history. What about the book? Well, the first thing you need to know is that Age of Aces Books has gone out of their way to produce a collector's quality volume at an incredibly low price. The book, quite simply is a work of art. From the gorgeous, dramatic wraparound cover by Chris Kalb to a stark wonderful interior design with black-page chapter lead offs, easy to read text and the illustrations from the original pulp magazines acting as bumpers between each novel.
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Format: Paperback
The Spider Vs. The Empire State
The Spider Vs. The Empire state is a true pulp novel set in 1938, in fact it was actually written then as part of `the Spider' pulp series of books that appeared every month. This is actually a compilation novella s it contains all three original monthly novels in one volume (`The Spider- That City That Paid to die', `The Spider- The Spider at Bay' and `The Spider-Scourge of the Black Legions') All written by Norvell Page.
This novel is an allegory concerning the Nazi movement of the 30's that was sweeping Germany. It also touches on socialism as well, mentioning the horrors of Soviet Russia several times.
This is a hard core novel with the Spider going through hell and back to save New York State, which had fallen under a puppet governor whose strings were being pulled from the shadows by a man only known as `The Master'. A new state-wide police force was instituted called the `Black Police' who collected tax upon tax and find upon fine on the backs of the citizenry. There are hangings, whippings, bombings and various other methods of death being instituted upon the populace by the rogue government.
This is an exciting and thrilling novel written in a different era, but in a writing style we should all be envious of. Colorful and exciting, the story keeps you mesmerized, wanting not to put the four hundred eighteen page novel down, for the most part.
The middle book at times became overly long it seemed and in spots the story dragged somewhat. There was a portion of the book that became very repetitious with repeated captures and escapes as well as many flights in stolen planes between Albany and Manhattan.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you enjoy pulp novels like "The Shadow" and "Doc Savage", you'll really enjoy this book. A trilogy showcasing New York state being taken over by a fascist organization and the vigilante known as the Spider marshaling his forces to stop them. I haven't read Page's work before but I definitely plan on checking it out again.
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Format: Paperback
"THE CLASSIC PULP FICTION NAZI ALLEGORY FROM 1938"

Well, that's what the cover blurb says, but for inspiration Norvell Page did not have to look to Berlin, or any of the other foreign lands where despots were on the rise. He needed look only as far as the political machines of Chicago or Trenton, to the State Houses at Albany or St Louis...or, for that matter, to Washington DC.

The Spider was one of many two-gunned crime fighters during the Great Depression who appeared in a self-titled monthly pulp magazine, his lasting from 1933 to 1943, for 118 issues. In 1938, the magazine featured three consecutive novels, "The City That Paid to Die" (Sept), "The Spider at Bay" (Oct), and "The Scourge of the Black Legions" (Nov), comprising the so-called "Black Police Trilogy," and are collected in this omnibus from Age of Aces Books, The Spider vs The Empire State.

Normally, The Spider found himself pitted against either a crime lord on a rampage or a madman instituting a reign of terror. In these three cautionary novels, however, he finds himself set against politics gone wild and cast in the role of revolutionary, freedom fighter and military commander. After a legal election (it was rigged!), the Governor of New York and the State Legislature enact a series of laws that bring about ruthless taxation and confiscation of private property. By Executive Order, the Governor empties the prisons, garbs the convicts in black (the "Black Police" of the sub-title), and gives them absolute power to collect taxes, seize property and summarily execute resistors. Because it's all being done by the State's "legal" government, The Spider and his allies are cast as outlaws, and Federal intervention is all but impossible.
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