Books: Thriller

In the spring of 1942 a group of sailors were lolling on the gun deck of a transport at Samoa. One of them picked up a battered, coverless novel and began to read it aloud.

Page one: Bill Saunders beats up an ex-pugilist bouncer in a pub. Page two: the ex-pug is dead and Bill is chased through the streets of London. Page three: Bill breaks into a room to hide, finds there a pretty salesgirl named Jane, and spends the night with her.

Somebody on the deck remarked that this was a book real he-men should read. It was called Kiss the...

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