Headpress Books Established 1991

Hip Pocket Sleaze

The Lurid World of Vintage Adult Paperbacks

Charting the rise of sleazy pulp fiction — and questionable nonfiction — from the 1940s onward, Hip Pocket Sleaze examines the erotic and enduringly shocking works of an era when print was king and kinky.

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—from page 75 of My Sister, the Sex Pawn


The rise and fall of the sleazy paperback!

Charting the rise of sleazy pulp fiction — and questionable nonfiction — from the 1940s onward, Hip Pocket Sleaze examines the erotic and enduringly shocking works of an era when print was both king and kinky. Publishing houses, such as New English Library (UK), Horwitz (Australia) and Greenleaf (USA), could barely meet the demand of a public bent on skinheads, witchcraft, giant crabs, Nazis, and smut of every stripe.

Reviewing the key titles, interviewing some of the authors, and profiling the cover artists and the publishers, Hip Pocket Sleaze offers a comprehensive overview of paperback sleaze, which, by accident as much as design, has had a lasting impact on our society — from the ground-breaking gay and lesbian themed books, and the challenge to taboo, right through to the lucrative collector marketplace, all of which and more are covered in unflinching detail.

Fully illustrated.




A Short History Of Paperbacks

  1. The Birth Of Pulp Fiction
  2. Armed Services Editions: Selected Titles


Adult Paperbacks

  1. Strange Sisters & Queer Daddies: Lesbian & Gay Paperbacks
  2. Gay & Lesbian Paperbacks: A Selected Bibliography


The Smut Peddlers: Writer Profiles & Interviews

  1. Victor J. Banis
  2. Ann Bannon
  3. Lawrence Block
  4. Richard E. Geis
  5. Jim Harmon
  6. Ron Haydock
  7. Robert Tralins
  8. Edward D. Wood, Jr.


Masters Of The Provocative Art

  1. Gene Bilbrew
  2. Eric Stanton
  3. Bill Ward
  4. Interview: Dede Aday Macdonald


Vintage Adult Paperback Reviews

The 1970s: When Softcore Hardened & The Sleaze Became Sick:

  1. Linda Lovelace
  2. Greenleaf: The Way It Was
  3. Sadistic Patriots: Horwitz’s Sleazy War Paperbacks
  4. New English Library
  5. Easy Riders: The NEL Biker Paperbacks
  6. Interview: DJ Norman


Other Genres:

  1. Turning On & Dropping Out: Drugs & Counterculture
  2. Scream & Scream Again: Horror Tie-Ins
  3. The Gore Novels Of Herschell Gordon Lewis
  4. Interview: Herschell Gordon Lewis
  5. The Devil Made Them Write It: Witchcraft & The Occult
  6. Witchcraft Magazine
  7. Charles Manson: Paperback’s First True Crime Hero


Miscellaneous Offbeat & Esoteric Titles

Classic Smut Film Rags

  1. Interview: Kevan Jensen


Sex For Sale

  1. 8mm — The Dirty Little Film Gauge
  2. Photo Sets & The Sounds Of Sex
  3. Sexy Sounds: A Selected Vinyl Discography
  4. Adult Audio Cassettes: A Brief Listing Of Known Titles


Collector Interviews

  1. Interview: Chris Eckhoff
  2. Interview: Miriam Linna



  1. Adult Paperbacks Published By The More Notable Companies In The USA
  2. Corinth Paperback Manuscript Guidelines (Circa 1965)
  3. 8mm Stag Shorts & Loops: A Partial Listing
Sample Pages
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John Harrison

JOHN HARRISON is a freelance writer based in Melbourne, whose interests include collecting vintage 8 & 16mm sexploitation loops and educational shorts, which he hopes to eventually archive and release on video and DVD. In his spare time, he runs a small mail-order business called The Graveyard Tramp, which specialises in off-beat items of pop culture memorabilia. In 2003 he curated an exhibition of vintage adult paperback cover art at The Basement Cafe in Melbourne.

Hip Pocket Sleaze


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