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My best friend had lousy taste in books, starring… Created, The Destroyer #1

May 25, 2022

I bought a copy of Created, The Destroyer by Richard Sapir and Warren Murphy in memory of a good friend who died last October from a heart attack. He’d had some weight issues and was a high stress guy. He’d had the option to retire from teaching a few years ago, but he kept going back to the classroom because he wanted to end his teaching career at a certain age. His family and I had been trying to get him to just retire and find a low stress job and relax with his hobbies.

One of my friend’s hobbies was reading crappy books. I read crappy books too, but I’ve always admitted that they’re crappy. My friend actually thought some of the crappy books were good and would recommend them to me. If I enjoy a book but know that it’s crappy, I usually don’t recommend it.

I found this copy of Created, The Destroyer a couple weeks ago at a used book store for $3.49 and I thought of my deceased best friend who often recommended this series to me. This was back in the early1990s, before either of us got married; we had a lot of spare time and talked about books, movies, sports, comics, and women. Never video games, though. Video games were for losers.

Anyway, my now deceased best friend thought that I’d like The Destroyer series since I liked The Punisher comic book. The thing is, I didn’t really like The Punisher comic book all that much; I would just read my friend’s copies and say they were okay.

You can tell that Created, The Destroyer was written in the 1970s. The protagonist is a Vietnam vet. The protagonists complain about rising crime and how society is falling apart. And it’s okay to kill the criminals. I can visualize the overly wavy hair and tacky clothes without any of that being described in the. book. I grew up in the 1970s. I’m not a big fan of that decade.

The chapters in Created, The Destroyer are short. The protagonist is amazingly awesome as a state of being. Even though there’s action, there’s not really any suspense because you know the main characters are going to survive, and you don’t care enough about the minor characters for there to be any suspense. The characterization is one-dimensional. The dialogue is occasionally funny but usually crappy. I wonder why it took two authors to write this book.

Wait a minute.

Short chapters?

Action but no suspense?

One-dimensional characters?

Crappy dialogue?

Co-authors?

I’m reading a James Patterson book that was written before James Patterson books even existed!

Now everything makes sense! Right now there are over 150 books in The Destroyer series, starting in 1971 with Created, The Destroyer. The two authors managed to write about five books a year in the 1970s. It’s not quite at James Patterson’s pace, but keep in mind that the two authors were focusing on The Destroyer series and James Patterson’s co-authors write for just about every genre.

As of 1977 when this copy came out, The Destroyer series had sold 11,000,000 copies. Maybe that’s impressive for a paperback series back then. From the back of the book, it looks like there were at least 23 books in the series at the time this copy came out. That’s just under 500,000 copies per book. I don’t know if that’s really very impressive for the 1970s.

I think a higher percentage of people read books back in the 1970s. The mall in my hometown had two book stores. I remember the convenience store in my neighborhood had a book rack filled with trashy bestsellers, trashy romance novels, and trashy adventure pulps like The Destroyer. Maybe the 1970s sucked, but at least book stores were everywhere.

Yeah, this first book in The Destroyer series was crap. I think it’s funny that James Patterson is so intent on making crappy novels popular again. As much as I might mock The Destroyer books, this first one is better than a lot of what James Patterson writes. I might be too harsh with these Destroyer books. They’re cheap and fast-paced and reflective of the 1970s. There might be some value in reading an occasional crappy book from the 1970s. I don’t think I’m ready to try a Mack Bolan book yet, though. Not yet.

Anyway, I miss my best friend, but he had crappy taste in books.

Or he had a low opinion of my reading ability.

11,000,000 readers had crappy taste in books.
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