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JOHN STEEL

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Full Name: John Steel
Series Name: John Steel, Special Agent
Codename: The Shadow
Nationality: British
Organization: British Military Intelligence
Occupation Agent

Creator: Unknown
Time Span: 1959 - 1963

ABOUT THE SERIES

John Steel is an agent with British Military Intelligence.

Steel was for several years a police officer in London. He must have been good at his job because he reached the rank of sergeant at what seems to be a relatively young age (he looks to be in his early 30's to me in the pictures of his first missions). He was a detective with the C.I.D. and judging from his record, he was very good at his job and well respected. Not to mention much needed as he discovers when in September of 1939 as Britain declared war on Germany over the invasion of Poland, Steel tried to resign from the Force to join the war effort but was denied as being too important. "Crime isn't going to vanish because there's a war," cites his superintendent.

Almost immediately after that refusal, Steel found, in the first recorded adventure, a crime in progress where one man was shot and the assailant was fleeing. Chasing that man down until the perp fell to his death, Steel would learn of a German spy ring operating around Europe gathering industrial diamonds for the war effort. Seizing his opportunity, Steel offered his assistance since he spoke French and German fluently. Two days later, he was "seconded for special duty with the War Office", attached to "Military Intelligence, Special Branch" and from then on he was a "Special Agent".

Steel would have many harrowing adventures during those War years, taking him all across the world getting into situations where he would barely escaped death on many occasions. Considering the eagerness with which he accepted each mission and the annoyance he would show when an injury would sideline him for a time, Steel was loving the excitement and was definitely in his element.

When the War came to its end, Steel decided he did not want to return to the police force and instead started his own private investigative company. It would seem obvious from the locales these new types of missions, recorded in "Casebooks", took place in that his experiences during the War and the contacts he made doing them would come in handy in getting business. Steel would remain quite busy for some time. Certainly the names of some of the casebooks gives the definite impression his connection to British Intelligence, whichever group he worked with, remained a good one and we are told that MI5 had "persuaded him to carry out one or two freelance assignments" but for the most part he was dedicated to going after the "crooks and killers" you might brush against in the streets of London.

This was done, we are told in the first adventure in his new occupation, with a difference. "Most people would have described Steel as a private investigator - a professional witness with a living to earn. ... [They would be wrong.] ... Steel had money of his own, a cool hatred of injustice in all its forms, and no need to make a profit out of fighting it." That does explain his ability to travel as much as he does.

Steel is a tall, very athletic, blond-haired, handsome man. He has an eye for lovely ladies and with his looks and physique and confidence, it is no wonder that they have an eye for him. In the case of Lucette, a female French Intelligence operative that he met and fell for in his first mission, he even proposed marriage but she declined "until the War is ended" leaving him to stay single and available. We would not see Lucette again but we would find an impressive number of other beautiful women to occasionally get his attention.

Good Lines:
- Regarding his parachute just before a jump into enemy territory, John Steel says, "If it doesn't open, our orders are to take it back and make a strong complaint."
- When someone describes a bad part of London as a jungle, Steel replies, "It is a jungle. It's made of bricks and asphalt. The wild animals wear bowties and pigskin gloves - but it's a jungle. Jungles are very interesting places."
- John Steel "was a man who hated to be puzzled".
- A successful man gives advice to a jazz musician and somewhat rebel, "Make sure you're a success in life, son. It's vital. Society rewards a successful rebel - but the other sort they usually hang".

COMIC BOOKS, GRAPHIC NOVELS, AND MANGA

Number of Stories:53
First Appearance:1959
Last Appearance:1963

       Fleetway Publications, Ltd. had a wide range of magazines going out every month. Several of them carried a similar name with them, "Picture Library". It would be in several different ones that John Steel - Special Agent would find his adventures told.
       The first was Super Detective Picture Library. That magazine saw usually four different issues each month and had done that for some time. It wouldn't be until #157 in September 1959 that John Steel shows up and he would continue to appear usually once a month until its final issue, #188, in January 1961.
       Even though he was there when it closed, he had already made the transition to a sister publication, Thriller Picture Library, which had an even longer pedigree. John Steel showed up in #343 in December 1960 and would, just like before, appear nearly once a month until #443, February 1963.
       The first three adventures in Thriller Picture Library would be war stories like in Super Detective Picture Library with him still identified on the covers as John Steel, Special Agent.
       The fourth adventure would be the first time we see a cover mention "A John Steel Case-book". This is a war criminal hunt in Lisbon shortly after the War so it is a bit like the War stories and a lot like the private investigator he was becoming.
       The fifth adventure is interesting in that it is clearly marked as "A John Steel  Case-book" story on the cover but when it starts out, the hero does not look at all like Steel and he is clearly identified as Dick Martin for the first few pages before suddenly being called John Steel! It is pretty clear that a different story was shoe-horned into being a John Steel tale. It was a very odd story beyond this naming issue.
       From then on Steel was a traveling private eye getting involved in lots of different kinds of trouble but all of them entertaining and fun to read. Though not many were spy-related, they all played on his experience and his skillset.


       Just over three years would pass with no word on Steel. Then in the inaugural issue of the new Buster Adventure Library he would reappear.
       However!
       Though the covers would be new and the titles for each of these adventures would be different, these 13 'new' John Steel adventures were reprints of a good number of the stories originally told in Thriller Picture Library. There were no new adventures to be found.

1 The European Diamond Gang The European Diamond Gang
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1959

From Super Detective Picture Library #157, September 7, 1959.
As WWII starts, John Steel is a police detective sergeant with C.I.D. He sees a gunfight on the street one evening and chases the perp down, a German who had a small cachet of diamonds on him. Now transferred to the War Office, Steel goes undercover in France to break up a Nazi gang that is stealing industrial diamonds for the war effort.
Click here to read the story.

2 Riddle of the Sands Riddle of the Sands
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1959

From Super Detective Picture Library #160, October 5, 1959.
It is December, 1940. John Steel is working on assignment in North Africa and is put on a mission to learn more about a German light armored car with a weapon firing a shell that went through the side of a British tank "like a knife through a hunk of cheese".
Click here to read the story.

3 Unknown Traitor Unknown Traitor
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 11/02/1959

From Super Detective Picture Library #161, November 2, 1959.
A Norwegian found on a small boat in the North Sea in 1941 tells of a narrow escape from a secret German factory in occupied Norway and of a dangerous gas being researched there. John Steel is sent to that country to learn what he can about the matter but a traitor back home alerts the enemy of his coming.
Click here to read the story.

4 Operation Treachery Operation Treachery
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #165, January 4, 1960.
It is July, 1943. Parachuting into Sicily to meet up with Resistance forces opposed to the Axis, John Steel learns that a rebel leader in the mountains has gotten hold of German defense plans and will sell them if the price is right. The problem is then surviving Italian and German forces while not getting the money stolen.
Click here to read the story.

5 War in the Jungle War in the Jungle
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #167, February 1, 1960.
The year is 1941. Japanese forces are "advancing like a horde of ants" and all of Malaya is soon to fall. John Steel is being sent to the island nation of Kerila in the Straits of Malacca to work with the Sultan in charge there to establish a radio hide-out for three men to report on troop movements. Steel will encounter many problems, including the Sultan's son, Prince Mohammed, who "has some ... er ... strange ideas".
Click here to read the story.

6 Gateway To Glory Gateway To Glory
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #169, March 7, 1960.
With the fall of il Duce, Mussolini, control of the government temporarily was in the hands of Allied-friendly Count Aldo Briancchi. The work of unifying the war-weary nation was progressing until suddenly Briancchi disappeared. A couple of days later, leaflets were dropped by German planes apparently from Briancchi entreating the populace to fight against the Allies. John Steel is in the country to find out what happened.
Click here to read the story.

7 One-Way Journey One-Way Journey
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #171, April 4, 1960.
A Polish scientist named Jacobwicz had been held at a facility at Peenemunde working on a project he refuses to disclose. He even kills the head of the unit controlling him rather than reveal his invention. When bombers destroy the plant and he is freed, he still refuses to say anything to the Resistance who find him. John Steel is sent to learn what he can about whatever it was the Pole had invented.
Click here to read the story.

8 The Fuhrer Plot The Fuhrer Plot
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #173, May 2, 1960.
The year is 1944. The failed plot by German officers to kill Hitler has failed. One man who survived the purge afterwards is General Count von Falken but he is one the list to be arrested. It is vital for British Intelligence to get him to England so he can be used to rally German people against the Nazis. That task falls to John Steel.
Click here to read the story.

9 Desert Spy Desert Spy
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #175, June 6, 1960
[Plot Unknown]

10 Operation 'Tina' Operation 'Tina'
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #177, July 4, 1960
The year was 1944 and the days of constant raids on London by the Luftwaffe are in the past but the V1 rockets are still causing massive damage. To find the source of these launches, information held by a Dutch woman named Tina could be critical but she is being held by the Germans so it falls to John Steel to rescue her before the Gestapo has her killed.
Click here to read the story.

11 Cargo X Cargo X
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #179, August 1, 1960.
The year is 1942. High-flying recon planes spot a very unusual site of several German ships in a big circle with diving operations underway off Crete. They are looking for a wrecked bomber which had been carrying a shipment of sophisticated submarine-detection devices known as "Selectron". A Greek agent for the Allies reports the real location for the downed plane is on land and John Steel is sent to find it. Whether the Greek can be trusted is another matter.
Click here to read the story.

12 Wings Of Escape Wings Of Escape
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #181, September 5, 1960.
In the early days of WWII as the Germans rapidly approached France, The British Expeditionary Force was racing to Dunkirk to flee back to England. A few brave men stayed behind to mount a delay and most died doing so. A couple were captured and held as POWs. One was actually a Czech who was the son of the main Resistance leader in that country and unfortunately knew the names of all the key players. It is John Steel's job to free the man before the Germans learn his real identity and knowledge.
Click here to read the story.

13 The Hidden War The Hidden War
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #183, October 3, 1960.
In the early summer of 1944 as plans for the Invasion have been worked out, the Gestapo and the SS in occupied France are hard at work rounding up Resistance operative who will be needed to confound the Germans when D-Day comes. A few traitors in the Maquis are at fault and John Steel is sent into occupied France to go on a traitor hunt.
Click here to read the story.

14 House Of Bamboo House Of Bamboo
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #185, November 7, 1960.
In early 1942 in Burma, the invading Japanese were conquering land quickly but the conquered people were not at all welcoming. In a still British held section of the country, the Subversive Operations Far East command was doing its best to organize sabotage and riots and rebellions. John Steel is sent to that region to help. One job is to free a captured influential Chinese merchant held in Rangoon.
Click here to read the story.

15 The Reign Of Terror The Reign Of Terror
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Super Detective Picture Library #187, December 5, 1960.
When word reaches London that a General Kreuger, Gestapo counter-espionage expert called 'the Butcher of Frankfurt', is headed to Lyons, France, it is known his mission is to start of 'reign of terror' against the Resistance. John Steel is sent to try to capture Kreuger and if not, then eliminate him.
Click here to read the story.

16 The Shadow - School For Spies The Shadow - School For Spies
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1961

From Super Detective Picture Library #188, January 2, 1961.
Shortly after Dunkirk, a German attack on a coastal area of France results in John Steel being severely wounded. An older French farm couple find him and nurse him back to health; his identity remains a secret so they call him the Shadow. After he is able to leave to make his way to England, he is sickened to learn that the Germans have killed the couple. He slows his return long enough to do some serious damage and that will let him find a German training camp for would-be 'Englishmen'.
Click here to read the story.

17 Mission To Maru Mission To Maru
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1960

From Thriller Picture Library #343, December 1960.
The year is 1943. The Japanese have conquered much of Southeast Asia and the British resistance is weakening, largely through disease. A noted expert on treating these tropical troubles is a man named Mortimer who is trapped in Switzerland. John Steel is sent to rescue the man before Japanese agents can snatch him themselves. Months later, it is learned he has been recaptured by the Japanese and is being held in the Maru prison camp in Burma.
Click here to read the story.

18 Operation Freedom Operation Freedom
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1961

From Thriller Picture Library #347, January 1961.
It is early 1945 and the Germans are near collapse. It is learned that a noted tank battalion commander, currently out of favor with Hitler, might be brought back into command which would lengthen the war. He is currently the commandant of a POW camp in Poland. The British have a plan to keep him from retaking control of the mechanized forces but it needs John Steel to let himself be taken prisoner in that region to get it started.
Click here to read the story.

19 The Debt Of Honor The Debt Of Honor
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1961

From Thriller Picture Library #351, February 1961.
In September of 1944, Germans were being pushed back out of Belgium and soon out of Holland. Helping on an air attack on hidden German forces, John Steel is shot down. He get needed assistance from a Dutch farm couple and makes it back to England. Then he learns the couple have been arrested by the Germans for their efforts and he knows he owes them a huge debt which he is determined to repay.
Click here to read the story.

20 Meet Me In Lisbon Meet Me In Lisbon
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1961

From Thriller Picture Library #355, March 1961. Reprinted as Dateline For Danger in Buster Adventure Library #1, July 1966.
The year is 1945. The War in Europe is over. When word comes from Lisbon that four escaped German war criminals were seen in that Portuguese capital, John Steel is sent undercover to smoke them out.
Click here to read the story.

21 Downbeat Downbeat
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1961

From Thriller Picture Library #359, April 1961.
WWII is finally over. John Steel's job with Military Intelligence is over. He takes up the profession of private investigator and is soon asked to help recover a valuable book just stolen from a library. This in turn will lead to a case searching for a missing rich heir named John Pierce.
Note: this is a bizarre matter where the hero is a dark haired man named Dick Martin. He is identified as such several times so there is no mistake. Then on the 9th page, he is called John Steel! He will stay Steel throughout the rest of the story, including meeting up again with a woman who knew him as Martin in the tale's beginning.
Click here to read the story.

22 Blues For Danger Blues For Danger
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown
Copyright: 1961

From Thriller Picture Library #363, May 1961. Reprinted as Catch Me A Killer in Buster Adventure Library #3, August 1966.
Getting an office above a jazz club because he liked the music, John Steel wasn't looking for a client yet but a week after meeting the jazz combo playing below, he gets one as the lead musician is accused of murdering a wealthy industrialist while trying to rob him. The combo had been playing a gig at a party given by the deceased and someone is claiming to have seen everything. Steel has considerable doubts.
Click here to read the story.

23 Violent Tempo Violent Tempo
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 06/1961

From Thriller Picture Library #367, June 1961. Reprinted as Showdown in Buster Adventure Library #5, September 1966.
When Ted Hammond stumbled into Ted Beckett's coffee-house beneath John Steel's office, he was desperately trying to reach Steel before dying, shot twice in the back. His death moments later coincided with a call from Steels' former boss at the British Secret Service, a man for whom Hammond had also worked. Before his death, he had reported finding Paul Emmet, a once trusted comrade who had turned traitor and given up several fellow agents to the Nazis.
Click here to read the story.

24 Bullets In The Sun Bullets In The Sun
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1961

From Thriller Picture Library #371, July 1961. Reprinted as Terror Calls The Tune in Buster Adventure Library #9, November 1966.
In return for British financial aide and tanks and ammunition, rebel leader General Arrida was near toppling the dictatorship of the current government in the South American nation of Curacos. But Arrida also had other 'friends' showing his true colors. Proof of his double-dealing is in the hands of an MP back in London who is about to expose him but then learns the General's men have kidnapped the MP's teen son. In an oddly lucky way, the desperate MP finds his way into the coffee-shop beneath John Steel's office and soon Steel is involved.
Click here to read the story.

25 A Picture Of Guilt A Picture Of Guilt
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1961

From Thriller Picture Library #375, August 1961.
[plot unknown]

26 Play It Cool Play It Cool
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1961

From Thriller Picture Library #379, September 1961. Reprinted as Tomorrow You Die! in Buster Adventure Library #11, December 1966.
[plot unknown]

27 Dead Heat Dead Heat
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1961

From Thriller Picture Library #387, November 1961. Reprinted as Death Deals A Joker in Buster Adventure Library #7, October 1966.
Someone in the Ralph Martin Motor-racing team is not playing nice and that puts the main driver in grave danger. Martin sends an urgent telegram to John Steel asking him to help by flying to Santa Carona in Mexico where the next race is scheduled for the next week. As cover he hires Riff and his jazz band from the coffee-shop below his office to travel with him.
Click here to read the story.

28 City Of Shadows City Of Shadows
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #395, February 1962.
[plot unknown]

29 Motif of Murder Motif of Murder
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #399, March 1962.
[plot unknown]

30 The Rising Tide The Rising Tide
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #403, April 1962.
John Steel has been asked by the head of Military Security in the British Government to fly to Hong Kong to get a better handle on the rapidly rising gang problem in that Far Eastern city, made much worse by huge influx of refugees. It soon becomes clear that something major was being planned but to find the truth, an incredibly dangerous and outlandish act would be needed on Steel's part.
Click here to read the story.

31 The Town That Died The Town That Died
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #407, May 1962.
[plot unknown]

32 The Devil's Lair The Devil's Lair
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #411, June 1962.
[plot unknown]

33 The Demon Drums The Demon Drums
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #415, July 1962.
The death of Big Pierre Soutou, jazz trumpeter supreme known and respected around the world, is the opening to this bizarre case. Soutou had a great gig at a London nightclub before suddenly heading home to Haiti where he died of a heart attack. Back in London, the man's nervous-twitching manager cannot believe it because Soutou was in great health and there was no plans for the sudden flight to Haiti. He comes to John Steel to investigate.
Click here to read the story.

34 One False Step One False Step
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #419, August 1962.
[plot unknown]

35 The Big Take The Big Take
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #423, September 1962.Reprinted as Who Is My Enemy in Buster Adventure Library #21, May 1967.
It is to Rome that John Steel has been asked to come, "to prevent murder, they'd said". The call had come from American Amalgamated Papers, the most powerful newspaper chain in the world. Someone is said to be out to kill Drew Vandal, king of gossip, "the highest paid retailer of scandal in the world". Considering "he dipped his pen in vitriol and the column he wrote spread poison" everywhere, it was not surprising.
Click here to read the story.

36 The Eye Of The Hunter The Eye Of The Hunter
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #427, October 1962.
The latest case for John Steel started when he was out on a rough-shoot. An old friend from his days in the Subversive Operations Executive during WWII was worried that his aim had suffered after three years in recovery but both he and Steel are confident he is ready. The matter is an invitation from the Nizam of Bahlore, India to take part in a shooting competition. Arriving in India, though, both men find there are many who want them dead first.
Click here to read the story.

37 Shakedown Shakedown
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #431, November 1962.
[plot unknown]

38 The Silent Enemy The Silent Enemy
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1962

From Thriller Picture Library #435, December 1962.
[plot unknown]

39 The Fatal Blow The Fatal Blow
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1963

From Thriller Picture Library #439, January 1963.
The lone Frenchman in the Foreign Legion in Algeria had written a letter asking for help from John Steel but before he could mail it, he was snatched from a cafe by member of the Grey Commandos and hauled away to answer to 'the Colonel'. His letter was picked up by a young woman and mailed anyways. The unfortunate man had been an old friend of Steel and the letter talks of his having joined the Legion to find a traitor, former SS Colonel Spadl, the Butcher of Bordeaux, reported dead years before.
Click here to read the story.

40 Gunpoint! Gunpoint!
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1963

From Thriller Picture Library #443, February 1963.
[plot unknown]

41 Dateline For Danger Dateline For Danger
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1966

From Buster Adventure Library #1, July 1966 - a reprint of Meet Me In Lisbon in Thrilling Picture Library #355, March 1961.
See link for plot.
Click here to read the story.

42 Catch Me A Killer Catch Me A Killer
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1966

From Buster Adventure Library #3, August 1966 - a reprint of Blues for Danger in Thrilling Picture Library #363, May 1961.
See link for plot.
Click here to read the story.

43 Showdown Showdown
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1966

From Buster Adventure Library #5, September 1966 - a reprint of Violent Tempo in Thrilling Picture Library #367, June 1961.
See link for plot.
Click here to read the story.

44 Death Deals A Joker Death Deals A Joker
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1966

From Buster Adventure Library #7, October 1966 - a reprint of Dead Heat in Thrilling Picture Library #387, November 1961.
See link for plot.
Click here to read the story.

45 Terror Calls The Tune Terror Calls The Tune
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1966

From Buster Adventure Library #9, November 1966 - a reprint of Bullets In The Sun in Thrilling Picture Library #371, July 1961.
See link for plot.
Click here to read the story.

46 Tomorrow You Die! Tomorrow You Die!
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1966

From Buster Adventure Library #11, December 1966 - a reprint of Play It Cool in Thriller Picture Library, September 1961.
See link for plot.
Click here to read the story.

47 Death Shadows The Hunter Death Shadows The Hunter
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 01/1967

From Buster Adventure Library #13, January 1967 - a reprint of a story in Thriller Picture Library (which one is unknown).
[plot unknown]

48 Savage Waterfront Savage Waterfront
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1967

From Buster Adventure Library #15, February 1967 - a reprint of The Rising Tide in Thriller Picture Library #403, April 1962.
See link for plot.
Click here to read the story.

49 Dead Man's Tale Dead Man's Tale
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1967

From Buster Adventure Library #17, March 1967 - a reprint of a story in Thriller Picture Library (which one is unknown).
[plot unknown]

50 The Big Fix The Big Fix
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1967

From Buster Adventure Library #19, April 1967 - a reprint of a story in Thriller Picture Library (which one is unknown).
[plot unknown]

51 Who Is My Enemy Who Is My Enemy
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1967

From Buster Adventure Library #21, May 1967 - a reprint of The Big Take in Thriller Picture Library #423, September 1962.
See link for plot.
Click here to read the story.

52 Invitation To Death Invitation To Death
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1967

From Buster Adventure Library #23, June 1967 - a reprint of a story in Thriller Picture Library (which one is unknown).~s}
[plot unknown]

53 The Devil Of Antiga The Devil Of Antiga
Published by Fleetway Publications Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1967

From Buster Adventure Library #25, July 1967 - a reprint of a story in Thriller Picture Library (which one is unknown).~s}
John Steel returns to the island of Sicily, visiting the village of Antiga near the Tawny Mountain, to pay a debt owed since "one battle-torn night" during WWII. He is stunned to find the village destroyed and the man he owed is hated by everyone in the region. Steel is determined to learn what happened.
Click here to read the story.

MY COMMENTS

The first set of adventures of John Steel, Special Agent, told in the pages of Super Detective Library while he served in World War II are exciting and well written storied but there is not very much to differentiate Steel's adventures from those of his colleague in that publication, Spy 13. They are a bit more personal than Spy 13 but not by much.

When he shows up after the War in Thriller Picture Library, the stories show us a good deal more about the man and his humanity. The tales are also extremely well written and full of twists and action and excitement.

Whoever was doing the writing knew what he was doing and the artwork, black and white, was very well done. I can see why he held on as long as he did because a John Steel - Special Agent story was a lock on a good tale worth the half-hour to read it.

GRADE

My Grade: A-

Your Average Grade:   A+

YOUR OPINIONS

4554ZABULON A+ 2021-06-14


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