Jun. 24, 2019

The sixth volume in this latest series and the fourth by the great Norvell Page!

The Spider #6 The Citadel of Hell by Norvell Page writing as Grant Stockbridge

The Spider is Richard Wentworth, a wealthy criminologist. Backed up by his manservant Ram Singh, his old war pal Jackson, and his fiancé Nita van Slone, Wentworth takes on crime at the street level.

The Spider has no scruples about killing. The criminals who cross the Spider die and their foreheads are marked with a scarlet spider!

The Spider is wanted by the police, and his friend Commissioner Kirkpatrick suspects Wentworth. Hardly surprising, as everyone seems to know the Spider’s secret. Proving it is another thing entirely…

The Citadel of Hell

This story was originally published in the Spider Magazine in March 1934.

Many places are burning to the ground with a heavy loss of life. All locations have one thing in common: they are somehow connected to the food industry. Warehouses, factories, distribution centers, stores—all are fair game for the Food Destroyers! The Red Mask and other like-minded villains are systematically driving up prices—and this is the Great Depression!

Hunted by the police (when is he not?) Wentworth first takes the identity of Tito Caliepi the hunchbacked violinist, and we begin to see the Spider’s trademark look. The pace is frantic and the death toll massive.

I think it one of the better Spider novels. I do wish Page had somehow made the Spider’s secret identity a lot more secret. The whole idea of a secret identity is to conceal who is behind the mask. Hey, Superman came along only four years later and didn’t have this kind of problem when all he did was wear glasses!

I give the book five stars…

Quoth the Raven…

Buy It Here directly from Altus Press>