Best 1947 Adventures (8)

By: Joshua Glenn
June 12, 2017

One in a series of 10 posts identifying Josh Glenn’s favorite 1947 adventure novels. Happy 70th anniversary!

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Boris Vian‘s secret-identity adventure The Dead All Have the Same Skin (Les morts ont tous la même peau).

Dan Parker, a white man working as a bouncer in New York, is getting tired of his own hard-living ways — the drunks he tosses out of the club, the violence, the extramarital sex with black women. But when Richard, a black man, turns up claiming to be his half-brother and demands money, Dan becomes terrified that he’ll lose everything. (“Five years and not a soul suspects it. No one has the slightest idea that a man of mixed blood, a colored man, has been the one pounding on their heads each and every night.”) The appearance that Dan has been presenting to the world is a false one; his true identity is a protean one; and he’ll do whatever it takes to prevent Richard from exposing his secret. Brutal violence ensues.

Fun fact: This is the French author and musician’s second book, after I Spit on Your Graves (1946), published under the pseudonym Vernon Sullivan. Reissued by TamTam Books.

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Let me know if I’ve missed any 1947 adventures that you particularly admire. Also, please check out these additional lists. The 200 Greatest Adventure Novels of All Time. THE OUGHTS (1904–13): 1905 | 1906 | 1907 | 1910 | 1911 | 1912. THE TEENS (1914–23): 1915 | 1916 | 1917 | 1920 | 1921 | 1922. THE TWENTIES (1924–33): 1925 | 1926 | 1927 | 1930 | 1931 | 1932. THE THIRTIES (1934–43): 1935 | 1936 | 1937 | 1940 | 1941 | 1942. THE FORTIES (1944–53): 1945 | 1946 | 1947 | 1950 | 1951 | 1952. THE FIFTIES (1954–63): 1955 | 1956 | 1957 | 1960 | 1961 | 1962. THE SIXTIES (1964–73): 1964 | 1965 | 1966 | 1967 | 1970 | 1971 | 1972. THE SEVENTIES (1974–83): 1975 | 1976 | 1977 | 1980 | 1981 | 1982. The goal, eventually, is to publish a Top 10 Adventures list for every year of the 20th century.

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Adventure, Lit Lists

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