When it comes to preserving history, culture and nostalgia, particularly black culture, Mark A. Randolph is a rare breed. His wealth of knowledge on various subjects seems to be infinite, yet he’s always open to learning more making him what I would consider an expansive resource guide to all things cool. Although close in age, Mark has become like a big brother while schooling me on a few things that I wasn’t heavy on including the vast world of pulp and fiction novels that took readers on a journey into another life without leaving the comforts of their own homes. For his first Coffee Table Status, he gives you look and a brief introduction into one of the companies famed for producing these novels.

Panther Crime was an imprint of Panther Books Ltd., a British publishing house that released mostly fiction novels during the 1950s and 1960s. Famous for science fiction titles from the likes of Ray Bradbury and Isaac Asimov, Panther chose the gritty realism of Chester Himes’ detective novels to kick off its Panther Crime imprint. The paperback seen above was released in Great Britain in 1968 and is typical of Panther Crime’s penchant for using very surrealistic photographs on their covers. The ambiguity of these curious covers invite the reader to get lost in the world that Mr. Himes has constructed. A very welcome addition to my collection!