(SOLD): HOLLIDAY, Don. The Man from C.A.M.P.

(San Diego, CA): Corinth Publishers and Phoenix Publishers 1966 – 1971.  First edition.  Thirteen volumes.  Paperback originals.  A complete set of the Man from C.A.M.P. novels and the four spin-offs.  The set comprises of ten gay pulp fiction novels published under the pseudonym of Don Holliday, and the three spin-off volumes. The original nine novels were written by Victor J. Banis between 1966 and 1968; a tenth by an uncertain author appeared in 1971. The series first emerged during a period when gay paperback titles began spoofing popular genre fiction. As such, they are part of the great gay paperback explosion that “catered to almost every taste in men’s genre fiction,” including detective stories and spy thrillers.  According to Banis, the series was inspired by the characters Batman and Robin, and is a spoof of the James Bond series and the television show The Man from U.N.C.L.E.   The Man from C.A.M.P. is Jackie Holmes a witty, handsome and fabulous gay superspy sporting blond hair and a slight build with amazing strength and agility.  The volumes in the series comprise:

The Man from C.A.M.P. (1966): Lou Upton, an INTERPOL representative, pairs Jackie with the U.S. Treasury Department investigator Ted Summers to foil a Los Angeles gang of gays headed by the lesbian Big Daddy, who are counterfeiting diamonds that are so fine even experts are fooled.

Color Him Gay (1966): Jackie fights B.U.T.C.H. in Los Angeles and San Francisco, when it seeks to blackmail the closeted British rock superstar Dingo Stark.

The Watercress File (1966): After Jackie and Treasury Agent Rex Winter’s initial effort to uncover the international criminal organization Butterfly fails, Jackie is summoned by his Aunt Lily to Washington, D.C., where he teams up with CIA agent Craig Mathews, his aunts and a male cousin (who form W.A.T.E.R.C.R.E.S.S., Women Acting Together, Enlightened, Righteous, Courageous, Responsible, Enterprising, Strong and Sensible) to stop an assassination plot.

The Son Goes Down (1966): Working with Irish agent Jerry Shannon to stop a ring kidnapping blond teenage American boys who are fans of the dead actor Dean James, Jackie heads to Tijuana and Lisbon, accompanied by the adopted son of an old friend, a male-to-female transsexual.

Gothic Gaye (1966): After Jackie falls in love with Baron Max von der Gout and leaves C.A.M.P. in order to live with him in the supposedly haunted Castle Gaye, B.U.T.C.H. makes various attempts on his life; at Rich’s instigation Summers, Stark, Matthews, and Shannon show up to help.

Holiday Gay (1967): During the Christmas season the Swallows, a gang of midgets under the direction of Birdie Wing, engages in a series of jewel heists before Jackie and an unexpected white-bearded gentleman dressed in a lavender suit stops them cold.

Rally Round the Fag (1967): Jackie is called upon to impersonate a female double agent who has become part of a plot to begin World War III; the case leads him to Stockholm, where he dallies with Swedish agent Sven and Russian agent Boris, and for a brief moment to Spain, where he has to put his bullfighting skills to the test.

The Gay Dogs (1967): A vicious gang under the leadership of the dominatrix Anna Lingus dognaps Lady Agatha’s Yorkshire terrier, causing Jackie chivalrously to go to the rescue.

Blow the Man Down (1968): When Atlantic ships start disappearing just before a Summit Cruise, Lou Upton calls on Jackie and U.S. Agent Andy Parks for help; they are sucked into the domed city of Atlantis, ruled by the emperor Machas Fruche, a.k.a. Mother Schmucker, where Jackie’s musical skills save the day. 

Gay-Safe (1971): Jackie suspects B.U.T.C.H. is behind the death of Dr. Perry Robert, a founder of the Church of the Homosexual Community; LAPD Detective Tom Lattimer and Agent Andy Parks show up to help.

Sex and the Single Gay by Jackie Holmes, That Man from C.A.M.P. as told to Don Holliday (1967): one of the first gay self-help guides to appear.

The C.A.M.P. Guide to Astrology by Lady Agatha and Jackie Holmes, as told to Don Holliday (1967).

The C.A.M.P. Cookbook by Lady Agatha in conspiracy with Don Holliday (1968).

All volumes are generally in very good condition, or better, in pictorial wrappers by Robert Bonfils  (except Gothic Gaye, the cover of which was illustrated by Darryl Milsap).  The C.A.M.P. cookbook, and the ninth novel, Blow the Man Down are rare in commerce and this is the first complete set of the works we have seen offered for sale.  A nice set of this important collection, the forerunner of countless James Bond spoofs of the 1960s and the first positive portrayal of a gay secret agent in fiction.


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