013 03/35 Land of Always-Night

Chuck Welch
March 13, 1995 - 1935 / bama / Bantam 013-024 / baumhofer / johnson / nanovic / novel / pulp

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With the fate of America hanging in the balance, Doc Savage and his fearless crew battle a hideously white-faced man named Ool who kills merely with a touch of his finger. The only clue to his diabolical power is a mysterious pair of dark goggles which brings death to whomever possesses them. The trail leads to a fabulous lost super-civilization hidden deep in the bowels of the earth, where Doc Savage and his fabulous five face their supreme challenge.

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Comment Archive

  1. Scott Kimball says:

    You could get a firm grip on the cover of this one, tear off the remaining 138 pages and toss ’em in the trash… AND YOU WOULD STILL HAVE A GREAT BOOK! I mean just look at that cover… Doc recoiling at some unseen horror that is powerful enough to ruffle even the Bronze Man’s feathers… it must be bad! And the creepy, pasty-white guys with the Black goggles pointing and leering from beneath all those giant mushrooms! This may be my favorite Doc cover… definitely in the top 5. Great story, too, kept me engrossed the whole way through with awsome descriptions that drew me right into the fast paced action and weird scenes. Read it!

  2. Barry Ellis says:

    ABSOLUTELY one of the “top-ten” Doc stories! Just so inventive and cool. The apex of the “lost civilization” stories.

  3. Andrew Salmon says:

    What’s not to like about this one? Even the great Bantam cover is just so creepy and out there that I defy anyone to study it and not want to find out what the heck is going on between the covers. Doc stalking and being stalked through the inky blackness is enough to send chills up and down your spine. One of the best, pure and simple.

  4. Todd Pence says:

    In his revised edition of the biography of Doc Savage, Philip Jose Farmer dismissed this tale from his chronology as apocryphal, presumably because he found the underground civilization in this novel unrealistic. But “Murder Melody” later depicts an underground civilization even more fantastic and less believable than the one in “Always Night”, yet Farmer includes it in his chronology without comment.

  5. Paul Cook says:

    This was the second Doc adventure I ever read, and I read it the week it came out in paperback . . . and loved it. I also liked Murder Melody, but by then I was eating up the Doc adventures as fast as they came out. It’s a great adventure (even if it might have been partially ghosted) and the cover is a knock-out. I am of the belief that James Bama made the Doc Savage novels for Bantam a success. This cover is one of the reasons why.

  6. Mark Carpenter says:

    This just barely nudges out “The Green Death” as being the VERY BEST ghosted Doc adventure. Even though it is one of the longer books in the series, Johnson keeps the action and mystery moving briskly. I was engrossed from cover to cover. But what really makes “Land of Always-Night” so terrific is Johnson’s keen attention to detail: Ool’s love for chocolate creams, Doc’s ingenious infiltration of the gang, the dozens of intricate ways that Watches Bowen tries to kill Doc. There were no throwaway scenes here, something that’s not always true of a Dent story. Between this and “The Green Death,” I have TWO ghosted Doc’s in my personal top ten. YIKES!

  7. Lee Dorrance says:

    A spectacular adventure from start to finish. Johnson really nails Dent’s pacing and writing style. This is one of my favorite Bama covers as well. All in all simply a great story!

  8. Brian Lindsey says:

    One of the grooviest sci-fi Docs! Serves up some great action and a genuinely creepy villain in Ool. (There’s a terrific scene early on that has Ool skulking around atop the roof of the HTC warehouse, almost vampire-like.) A very cinematic story — it played like a big budget Doc Savage movie in my head whilst whipping through it.

    I wonder if the screenwriter of the 1956 Universal sci-fi flick THE MOLE PEOPLE read this when it was first published …

  9. Richard Cording says:

    What more is there to say? Definitely a MUST-read Doc!

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