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A few weeks back, I wrote a review of the anthology Legends. I enjoyed the book quite a bit and wasted little time to tackle Legends II. Newcon Press, August 2015, 215 pages not including some ads at the back of the book. Ian Whates once again edited the anthology. Twelve stories, most of which […]

A year and a half ago, I wrote a post about David Gemmell and how in my opinion he saved sword and sorcery fiction in the 1990s.  I think it was after that that I found out the Legends anthologies. The books are subtitled “Stories in Honour of David Gemmell.” I was not familiar with […]

I had heard about the anthology The Book of Swords sometime last year before its publication. The cover looked good but I was not filled with any great enthusiasm. I have read anthologies edited by Gardner Dozois and George R. R. Martin starting with Warriors (Tor Books, 2010). I wrote a review of the anthology […]

Jeff Jones (1944-2011) was one of the most important illustrators of sword and sorcery fiction. He started out with Canaveral Press’ I am a Barbarian by Edgar Rice Burroughs in 1967. Donald Wollheim (again) jumped on the new talent for paperback covers. Jones provided art for two of Jack Vance’s “Planet of Adventure” series and […]

We continue reading Robert E Howard’s Conan yarns in publication order, and noting how they have improved with age. Often dismissed as a mere boyish adventure tales, adult eyes rereading these alleged boy’s stories will see depth to them.

Manuel Sanjulian (b. 1941) is the most successful artist of the Spanish invasion of the 1970s. His first American work was for Creepy #42 (November 1971). From December 1972 to April 1974, he produced all the covers for Creepy except two montage covers for July and August 1973. Ken Kelly then produced most covers through […]

Esteban Maroto (b. 1942) was part of the “Spanish Invasion” of comic book artists in the early 1970s. He started in the 1960s in his native Spain. He had been published in the U.K. and then in the U.S. Warren Magazines reprinted the first six issues of New English Library’s Dracula series. Maroto did both […]

Don Maitz (b. 1953) is yet another artist to emerge in the middle 1970s with a legacy of sword and sorcery illustration. His website has this biography: “A native of Plainville, CT showed an early interest in drawing and received initial art training from the Famous Artist’s Correspondence School at age thirteen. Maitz attended the […]

The mid-1970s was a golden age for new artists coming on the scene: Tom Barber, Carl Lundgren, Doug Beekman, Richard Hescox, Steve Fabian etc. One of those whose career weathered the changes in book cover art is Stephen Hickman (b. 1949). His website has this to say: “Hickman’s work has earned him critical acclaim, including […]

                An artist with a thirty year career in paperback cover illustration is Douglas Beekman (b. 1952). The online Encyclopedia of Science Fiction states: “After briefly studying at the Columbus College of Art and Design in his home state of Ohio, he grew dissatisfied with the school and […]

Wayne Barlowe (b. 1958) has had a very successful career in science fiction illustration. He has also done some fantasy work. From his website: “Born in Glen Cove, New York to well-known natural history artists Sy and Dorothea Barlowe, Wayne Douglas Barlowe attended the Art Students League and The Cooper Union in New York City. […]

Michael Whelan (b. 1950) is probably the most successful artist I will cover in this series. If you bought science fiction or fantasy books in the 1980s or 90s, you have seen his work. His website has this say about his story: “A graduate of San Jose University with a BA in Painting and a […]