Tag Archives: Kings Cross pulp

Pulp Friday: Flat 4 Kings Cross

“A raw and revealing novel of abandoned passions in Sydney’s twilight zone.”

Today’s Pulp Friday book is Flat 4 Kings Cross, by Geoffrey Tolhurst, published by Horwitz Publications in 1963.

As I’ve previously written on this site, the early to mid-sixties was the transition point during which the Australian pulp publishing industry stopped relying completely on reprints of overseas titles and stories and characters set in the US, and started to pump out stories set locally.

As was the case in the UK and America, much of this was kitchen sink and exploitation fiction, often dressed up as lurid exposés of drug use and sexual promiscuity. These fed off mainstream society’s fears of youth rebellion and changing sexual standards. The setting for much of this work was Sydney’s Kings Cross, which during the sixties, seventies and eighties was Australia best-known center of drug use and prostitution.

Prostitutes, beatniks, con men, drug dealers, bent cops, organized crime lords, innocent tourists and American servicemen on leave all rubbed shoulders in  ‘the Cross’ as it is referred to locally. To this, local pulp authors added Chinese Triad gangs enslaving white women, witches and warlocks and a host of other less believable characters.

Flat 4 Kings Cross is a great example of this sub-genre of Australian pulp. … Read more