This is the first paperback edition of Spillane's first and best known book, published in 1947. The White Circle edition was published in late 1948 and precedes the American edition, New American Library's (NAL) Signet #699, by a couple of months. The NAL edition is famous for the impact it had on publishing. The hardcover had sold a few thousands of copies but the NAL paperback sold 2,000,000 in two years. NAL then went on to publish in paperback the rest of Spillane's novels in the early fifties with 17,000,000 in total sold by 1953 (figures from Kenneth Davis, Two-Bit Culture (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1984), p. 180.) These figures shocked the cultural critics of the day and amazed the publishers.
"But the law couldn't break an arm, or shove his teeth in with the muzzle of a gun to remind him that he wasn't fooling. Mike could - and did. Among the suspects were a former gangster gone society, a peculiar kid he was putting through college, a beautiful and sexy psychiatrist, a subtle nymphomaniac with a normal twin sister, a cured drug addict, and a likable moron who raised bees."