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VICTOR GAUNT

gaunt_victor_bk_khyber
 
Full Name: Victor Gaunt
Nationality: British
Organization: British Secret Service
Occupation Agent

Creator: Edward R. Home-Gall
Time Span: 1932 - 1949

ABOUT THE SERIES

       Victor Gaunt is an agent of the British Secret Service.
       The area of the world that Gaunt operates in is the countries of Afghanistan and Pakistan. In fact the first recorded adventure of this agent who was already well known for his exploits takes place in the most famous connection between the two lands, the fabled Khyber Pass.
       From the limited information that is given about Gaunt, the man has spent a good number of years working in that region and has acquired the ability to disguise himself physically and accurately play the part of a native in either country. The skill that Gaunt has with mimicry lefts him assume different roles in his play-acting with a beggar being one of his better avatars.
       Another of Gaunt's impressive set of skills is his fast draw of his revolver which he at times keeps secured by the sash around his waist; "the speed of his draw baffled the eye to follow it". This is very handy on several occasions but even more beneficial is his willingness to forego the handgun and bring out his sword with which he is possibly even better: "there were few better swordsmen in the world that the wild hillmen of the Khyber Pass but Gaunt was now proving to be one of that few". When he puts together those two abilities, he is frightening as in one scene where he is sword-fighting several men and still manages, when he notices a sniper about to fire, to pull his revolver and eliminate the threat.
       Gaunt is described as slightly taller than most men, in superb athletic build, and possessing piercing eyes. From the images we are given of him, Gaunt has a wide, solid chin, a slightly hawkish nose, and the description of his eyes is clearly shown to be accurate.

BOOKS

Number of Books:2
First Appearance:1947
Last Appearance:1949

       As described in the Novellas section below, the original stories about Victor Gaunt came out in serial format 15 years before the hardbacks mentioned next. What exactly are contained in these hardbacks is not yet known to me though my suppositions are given.


1 Victor Gaunt in China Victor Gaunt in China
Written by Edward R. Home-Gall
Copyright: 1947

Hardbound version of at least one, possibly two, of the novellas published more than a decade earlier under a pseudonym. The novellas are:
Gaunt the Master Spy in China
and possibly
Gaunt of the White Tong

2 Victor Gaunt - Master Spy Victor Gaunt - Master Spy
Written by Edward R. Home-Gall
Copyright: 1949

Hardbound version of at least one, possibly two, of the novellas published more than a decade earlier under a pseudonym. The novellas are:
Gaunt - Master Spy
and possibly
Gaunt of the Khyber Pass

NOVELLAS AND SHORT STORIES

Number of Stories:5
First Appearance:1932
Last Appearance:1937

       Each of the following adventures had their initial publishing in the pages of The Triumph, a British weekly publication. They were each told in serial format over a numerous successive weeks.
       The stories took on average 12 or more weeks to tell with each week holding usually 3 pages of 3 columns each resulting in each adventure being of an impressive size. [Note that two of the story arcs mentioned below have been verified as having at least 7 issues but were likely a dozen or more issues.]
       The first two came out in the same year, 1932, and were under the author's most commonly used pseudonym of Edwin Dale. The next year he returned to the character but used a different author name (I am curious as to why). Two years after that another adventure came out using the original pseudonym, followed two years later with the 5th and last adventure, again by the first pseudonym.
       As marked below, three of these serial adventures were combined into a 'pocketbook' edition in a sister publication called Champion Library which came out twice a month and seemed to me to be closer to a digest than a regular paperback.


1 Gaunt of the Khyber Pass Gaunt of the Khyber Pass
Written by Edwin Dale
Copyright: 1932

Originally published in The Triumph, 13 issues from Jan 30, 1932 to Apr 23, 1932. Collected into the Champion Library 'pocketbook' #141, Dec 1934.
Victor Gaunt is close on the trail of the infamous brigand and firebrand in the Khyber Pass region, the notorious Sha Bez, described as Gaunt's deadly enemy.
Click here to read the story.

2 Gaunt - Master Spy Gaunt - Master Spy
Written by Edwin Dale
Copyright: 1932

Originally published in The Triumph, 7+ issues from at least Oct 8, 1932 to at least Nov 19, 1932. A hardbound edition of this adventure was released as Victor Gaunt - Master Spy.
[plot unknown]

3 Gaunt Flying Spy Gaunt Flying Spy
Written by Rupert Hall
Copyright: 1933

Originally published in The Triumph, 16 issues from Nov 4, 1933 to Feb 17, 1934. Collected into the Champion Library 'pocketbook' #175, May 1936.
[plot unknown]

4 Gaunt the Master Spy in China Gaunt the Master Spy in China
Written by Edwin Dale
Copyright: 1935

Originally published in The Triumph, 7+ issues from at least May 25, 1935 to at least Jul 6, 1935. A hardbound edition of this adventure was released as Victor Gaunt in China.
[plot unknown]

5 Gaunt of the White Tong Gaunt of the White Tong
Written by Edwin Dale
Copyright: 1937

Originally published in The Triumph, 12 issues from Oct 9, 1937 to at least Dec 25, 1937. Collected into the Champion Library 'pocketbook' #254, Aug 1939.
In China, Victor Gaunt organizes a small group of fellow Caucasians into a group they call the White Tong to go up against a Chinese Tong named Foo-Chang.

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