Greetings everyone. I've been interested in getting into some pulp style books lately. I have a lot of interest but don't know where to start since they were just kind of stories published in magazines for a while and not sure a lot of them are available. I'm interested in sci-fi and fantasy for sure but am also open to good detective/crime stories. Also interested in the Tarzan stories. I've also heard there's been a new wave of pulp books and stories. So I'm an open book, please teach me.
I loved the Doc Savage series. He is one of the most popular pulp heroes, and part of the inspiration for the creation of Superman. (Doc's first name was Clark, he was often called the Man of Bronze, and he had a Fortress of Solitude in the Arctic.) Doc was a physical paragon, a genius, and highly skilled at everything. He had a beautiful cousin who was always getting herself into trouble, and five followers who were all experts at something and good in a fight. They traveled the world, exploring, having adventures, and fighting criminals. Sometimes they dealt with lost civilizations or advanced technology, but there were never any real supernatural or extra-terrestrial threats.
Early in his career, Harlan Ellison wrote quite a few stories for the pulps featuring young gang members. They were originally published in the '50s, towards the end of the pulp era. Many of these stories can be found in a collection titled The Deadly Streets.
H.P. Lovecraft wrote most of his stories for pulp magazines, His supernatural tales of the Cthulhu Mythos inspired other pulp writers to use the same concepts. Lovecraft was pen pals with Robert E. Howard, who wrote sword-and-sorcery stories for the pulps, especially ones featuring Conan or King Kull.
One that gets overlooked and is really pretty obscure is Sabat. He is a character created by British pulp writer Guy N. Smith ("best" known for a series- yes, a series- of killer crab books). About 20 years ago I picked up a collection of all four books at Tower Records (RIP) called "Dead Meat". They were ULTRA pulp- sleazy, violent, gory, and just plain weird. Sabat is like this ex-SAS dude turned renegade exorcist. He has lots of kinky sex, is posessed by his brother, and he fights English black magic covens, hippie vampires, skeletons, Voodoo gods, etc. One of my favorites bits is when he realizes that the only way to beat Satanic forces is to use Satanic magic- "fight fire with fire". It's all something like The Destroyer meets Dennis Wheatley. Kind of ahead of its time in a lot of ways. But mostly forgotten now.