Rediscovered: James Lee Burke’s Even Hand

Autograph Hound Saturday once again, and I get the sense that the riot of horrible, illegible John Hancocks we’ve been running recently has begun to bother Kevin Cook, noted book and pulp and autograph collector. The guy likes order, not chaos. He likes neat, not scrawled.

In protest to recent policies, Kevin said, “I realized that there is an obvious sequel to the bad hand-writing authors — which of course would be the ones who sign neatly and clearly. I immediately think of James Lee Burke, Loren D. Estleman, and Nelson Bond as examples.

“I checked some titles and James Lee Burke’s signature was as clear and neat in 1965 as it is today, and I have the books to prove it.

“Over 50 years of signing his name perfectly.

“Three nicely handwritten signatures over the decades. From Half of Paradise (his first book) in 1965 through Cimarron Rose in 1997 through New Iberia Blues (his most recent book) in 2019.”

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