Sunday, February 25, 2024

"Chicago Gangsters Ain’t Got No Business Out Here Nohow"

"The Bush Rat."
By Daniel J. Colich (?-?; FictionMags HERE).

First appearance: Top-Notch Magazine, May 1934.
Short short short story (4 pages).
Online at (HERE).

(Parental caution: Strong language.)

   "The gun slipped from his hand and clattered to the floor."

"You dirty rat" used to be the ultimate put-down, but in today's story a rat, dirty or not, proves to be a life-saver . . .

Principal characters:
~ Jim Proctor:

  ". . . wondered what might be passing through that thick, slow mind."

~ Bill Haag:
  ". . . whirled suddenly about. He stopped short as he looked into the blue-black revolver."


- Our story seems to fit nicely into that sub-sub-genre of fiction set in the wild and woolly areas of the North American continent most profitably exploited by Jack London (Wikipedia HERE) and his imitators. Great White North stories enjoyed quite a vogue in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, appearing in the pulps as well as the slicks on a regular basis.
- FictionMags credits Daniel Colich with only two short stories:
  (1) "The Bush Rat," (vi) Top-Notch, May 1934 (above)
  (2) "Wolf Bait," (vi) Top-Notch, May 1935.

Unless otherwise noted, all bibliographical data are derived from The FictionMags Index created by William G. Contento & edited by Phil Stephensen-Payne.

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