Lost Serial Photonovels

SERIAL PHOTONOVELS & BOOKS
Over 300 serials made since the silent era are lost forever. We've attempted to reconstruct several of them in book form with illustrations placed in them to match the action. THE TREY O'HEARTS, one of the first 10 serials made, was one that did a great deal toward establishing the formula for a cliffhanger serial that would last for years afterward & the book includes 100 rare original stills from it. THE BLACK BOX is a detective serial featuring Herbert Rawlinson which features "futuristic" devices -- like what amounts to a cell phone -- used in the early 1900s. Our best-seller is THE MYSTERIES OF MYRA, which includes over 200 illustrations from the extremely rare and mostly-lost serial which introduced the "paranormal investigator" to mainstream movies. These are unique editions and include content you will find nowhere else.
Stacks Image 5320

THE MYSTERIES OF MYRA

Wharton 1916 / Story by HEREWARD CARRINGTON and CHARLES GODDARD, Novelization by EUSTACE HALE BALL

Starring JEAN SOTHERN as Myra, HOWARD ESTABROOK as Dr. Payson Alden, MIKE RALE as the Grand Master of the Black Order

The long-lost original novelization by real-life paranormal investigator Hereward Carrington and pioneer serial screenwriter Charles Goddard (author of THE PERILS OF PAULINE, THE EXPLOITS OF ELAINE, and many more early chapter plays) of the most horrific and captivating serial ever made--in fact, the only one that ever fully dealt with the supernatural. Myra Maynard's family is cursed by the devil-worshipping Black Order and she is marked for death by black magic on the eve of her eighteenth birthday. Dr. Payson Alden, the movies' first psychic detective, uses science to try and defeat the cult's evil spells, and is assisted by his friend Haji, a Hindu mystic. During the course of the 15 episodes of the serial, the clairvoyant Myra is assaulted by, among other supernatural menaces, astral demons, a fire elemental, even a "thought monster" brought to life by the malicious will of fifteen men, Levitation, crystal balls, automatic writing, mediums, witchcraft, a golden idol come to life, and many more bizarre elements which made movie history also figure into the story to make this a truly fascinating series that you will not want to miss. You will see scenes in this serial that for years people have thought first appeared in DRACULA or FRANKENSTEIN--MYRA beat them to the punch by 15 years as well as defining the "black-robed cult members performing magic rituals" movie motif which soon afterward appeared in serials such as THE MYSTERY OF 13 and THE TRAIL OF THE OCTOPUS and hasn't departed from cinema screens yet!

Finally, after 94 years, THE MYSTERIES OF MYRA is reconstructed here in its entirety. Now, with 180 original photos from the serial, dozens of pages of incredibly rare "extras" including cast biographies, behind-the-scenes and publicity photos, and promotional items, and even unpublished photos from the unreleased "Voodoo" episode, banned by W. R. Hearst as too shocking for public viewing, you will be able to experience THE MYSTERIES OF MYRA as it was originally released, with numerous photos from each chapter all present to match the action. This is a VERY special project worth far more than the asking price, due to the rarity of the groundbreaking and extremely influential material contained in it which no serial fan, classic horror aficionado, or classic cinema fan will want to miss.

Produced by the Mysteries of Myra Restoration Team: editor/designer Eric Stedman, historical consultant Terry Harbin, researcher David Sorochty, and typesetter Tracy Renee Burton, with original material from private collections, the Library of Congress, British Library, Princeton University Firestone Library, and Ithaca-Made Movies of Ithaca, New York, where the serial was originally filmed.

Heavily illustrated with over 200 ultra-rare and frequently full-page original photographs, introduction by Eric Stedman which provides observations and additional information about the restoration of the story and pictures, and about 40 pages of "extras" such as a 4-page history of the Wharton Studio, the serial's cast and production personnel, and a behind-the-scenes production photo and memorabilia album.



6" x 9" 400-page bookstore-quality trade paperback
With color cover and black and white interior, spine about 1"
Paperback edition: $25

Same contents as above, with color wraparound dust jacket additional color images of the two existing MYRA posters and other memorabilia printed on the interior flaps.

Deluxe Hardbound Library Edition: $40


"I just received my MoM hardcover today. To be honest, I was a little nervous; publish on demand books are usually pretty badly designed and produced. But this was fantastic. A handsome book, well worth the money. I'm really glad you pursued this project. Great job." -- Larry Latham, www.lovecraftismissing.com

Stacks Image 5337
THE BLACK BOX
Universal 1915 / By E. Phillips Oppenheim

Scientific genius and private detective Sanford Quest (Herbert Rawlinson, star of THE FLAME FIGHTER and frequent player in Republic serials) is called to investigate a murder and finds himself enmeshed in an ever-widening and increasingly bizarre case involving missing jewels, a stolen ape skeleton, disembodied hands that murder without warning, and mysterious messages delivered in a small black box by the unknown killer. Quest and his assistant Laura (Anna Little) use inventions far ahead of their time, including a "portable wireless" (essentially a text-messaging cell phone) to try and solve the case -- if they don't, Quest himself will be imprisoned for the crime! Foreword by Raymond William Stedman.

264 pages, 32 original stills, 6"x9",
Full color glossy cover, black and white interior.

$20.95
Photos & Discussion Thread
View Preview / Buy from Lulu.com

Stacks Image 5351
HIDDEN DANGERS
Vitagraph 1920 / Adapted from the original pressbook

. . . was a silent cliffhanger serial featuring Western star Joe Ryan about a Jekyll/Hyde-type character who possesses scientific and magical powers made by Vitagraph which included genuinely spectacular cliffhangers featuring splitting bridges, cliffs, railroad handcars, Hindu idols, disembodied spirits, and lions, a bear and an octopus -- and is now entirely lost. This attractive 136 page book presents a summary of each chapter of the serial, over 50 nicely-painted illustrations, and background articles on the stars and production, derived from the ultra-rare extended-length original pressbook. Several pages of stills and ad cuts are also included. A handsome addition to your Lost Serial Photonovel library! Order it today and experience the next best thing to having been able to buy a ticket and see this unique serial!
Click here to see a preview and order this book!

136 pages, over 50 original paintings, 6"x9",
Full color glossy cover, black and white interior.

$12.95
View Preview / Buy from Lulu.com

Stacks Image 5365
THE STRANGE CASE OF MARY PAGE
Essanay 1916 / By Frederick Lewis

A short novelization of a mystery/courtroom drama serial that was directed mostly at the ladies but is nice to have for serial completists. The heroine, a Broadway actress (Edna Mayo), is faced with a desperate situation. Discovered unconscious on the floor of a restaurant near the corpse of a man who hated her, with a pearl-handled revolver in between them, she is put on trial for murder where she is defended by the man she loves (Henry B. Walthall). Photoplay edition includes photographs from the original 1916 Essanay serial and additional illustrations in their proper place near corresponding text.

114 pages, 6"x9", full color glossy cover, black and white interior.

$12.95
View Preview/Buy from Lulu.com

Stacks Image 5379
THE TREY O'HEARTS
1914 / by Louis Joseph Vance
Starring George Larkin, Cleo Madison and Edward Sloman.

Second Squadron edition upgraded with a huge collection of now 75 original photographs, many from the personal collection of original cast member and featured villain Edward Sloman -- including amazing behind-the-scenes production shots. A great serial jam-packed with action about Seneca Trine, an embittered man who vows to take revenge on Alan Law, son of his enemy who crippled him and ruined him in business. One of his twin daughters, Rose, is in love with Law, the other, Judith, sworn to kill him. The sign of death is a "trey of hearts" playing card with three bullet holes shot through it. This groundbreaking serial brought what was to be known as the cliff-hanger into full form and was the first to allow deathtraps and danger to drive it all the way through. It all builds to a wild murderous pursuit during a lightning storm, crashes, disaster, and even a shock/surprise ending. A sensation upon its original release.

194 pages, 6"x9" paperback, 75+ original stills,
Full color glossy cover, black and white interior.

$19.95
Photos & Discussion Thread
View Preview / Buy from Lulu.com

Stacks Image 5393
UNDER THE CRESCENT
Universal 1914 /
by Nell Shipman

In this riveting conflict between East and West, American actress Ola Humphrey, "The Purple Iris," who played herself in the 1915 Universal Pictures dramatization of her own true-life story, is charmed by visiting Egyptian prince Ibrahim Tousson (Edward Sloman) and becomes his wife. But when she finds herself then a prisoner in his harem, she determines to escape his cruelty with the help of soldier of fortune Stanly Clyde (William C. Dowlan). The violence escalates to an alarming level when with the help of Princess Zohra, mother of the Prince's unacknowledged child, she escapes from the palace and is pursued by the army -- after the Prince has proclaimed "Death to all Christians!" Originally filmed in six chapters, this wide-ranging and dramatic serial starts off like a romance novel but continues to build in suspense to perhaps the most violent conclusion of any chapter play, which remains shocking to this day. Exotic adventure.

223 pages, paperback, 6"x9," 64 original stills,
Full color glossy cover, black and white interior.


Photos & Discussion Thread
$19.95
View Preview / Buy from Lulu.com