Blog Archives


Jack Gaughan (1930 – 1985) was a ubiquitous illustrator for both science fiction paperbacks and magazine covers in the 1960 and 70s. He appears to have been Donald Wollheim’s main artist at Ace Books in the 1960s and a prominent artist for D.A.W. Books in the 1970s. Gaughan was right up there alongside Frank Frazetta […]

Was Conan a murderer?  Pshaw, I say! When thrown out into the Twit-Box arena as red meat to the lions, the question of when Conan committed murder elicited two responses.  One of which was flat out wrong, the other of which…it’s complicated, baby. In the first case, The Tower of the Elephant, Conan most certainly […]

The second half of the 1970s was a golden age for British paperback cover illustration. Bruce Pennington, Melvyn Grant, Chris Achilleos all created memorable book covers. Another member of this group is Rodney Matthews. From his website: “Born in 1945, in Paulton, North Somerset, Matthews was fascinated by nature from an early age.  He spent […]

At a used bookstore, you might come across a 1970s U.K. paperback with distinctive art. You might have Melvyn Grant or Bruce Pennington art on the cover. There is a good chance it will be Chris Achilleos. From his website: “Christos Achilleos grew up in a rural village near the town of Famagusta in Cyprus; […]

Melvyn Grant (born 1944) has had quite a long career in paperback cover artistry. He burst on the scene in 1975 in the U.K. and really hit his stride in 1977. The was a sword and sorcery boom going on at the time and Grant was in the middle of it. He did a great […]

Carl Lundgren (born 1947) is an artist who you probably have seen but did not realize who he is. He started out in the mid 1970s with a post-Frazetta style for the first printings of the first two Horseclans books by Robert Adams. These covers in my opinion are superior to the later Ken Kelly […]

Ken(neth) Barr (1933-2016) is a guilty pleasure of mine. He was a fixture of the 1970s into the early 1980s for many paperbacks and comic book covers. He was originally born in Scotland. He had some early work for Nebula Science Fiction in the U.K. in 1958 and 59. He did comic book work in […]

I mentioned Gino D’Achille (1935-2017) last week in comparison to Enrich Torres. Not a Spaniard but an Italian from Rome. From his webpage: “Gino D’Achille was born in Rome in 1935 and displayed a precocious talent as an artist from a very young age – being invited at 11 years old to present a portrait […]

There was a time in the 1970s when Frank Frazetta retreated as the preeminent painter of fantasy paperback book covers but before the rise of Ken Kelly, Boris Vallejo, and Rowena. This was a time of Frazetta imitators. Among those were Spanish artists brought in by Warren Magazines. One of those was Enrique Torres. He […]

The psychedelic era of rock music had a distinctive look for album covers. That artistic style spilled over into mass paperback book covers. One could argue that Charles Moll was the most psychedelic artist for sword and sorcery fiction paperbacks. There is nothing out there on Charles Moll. He painted covers for paperback books in […]

Roy Krenkel (1918-1983) is an artist primarily associated with Edgar Rice Burroughs paperbacks. He attended Burne Hogarth’s classes at the School of Visual Arts. He did work with Al Williamson and Frank Frazetta for EC Comics in the early 1950s. Krenkel also drew interior art in the waning days of the pulp magazine for Marvel […]

Jim Steranko (born 1938) had a brief career as a painter for sword and sorcery paperbacks in the late 1960s and early 1970s. He came out of the comic book milieu like Frank Frazetta and Gray Morrow. Steranko had started work with Marvel Comics in 1966. In 1969, he had a falling out with Stan […]