Mangor The Oh-So-Curious Dinosaur
Nov17

Mangor The Oh-So-Curious Dinosaur

In 1959 F.James Bermond – through Jerkin Press in America and Gordon Humley Books in the UK – published the first of seven dinosaur books aimed at the teenage market. Like the other Bermond books Mangor The Oh-So-Curious Dinosaur stands out for its approach to quite adult themes buried under its seemingly innocent adventure personifying beasts from Earth’s distant past. In particular, Mangor The Oh-So-Curious Dinosaur tackles family loss – separation from the herd during a migration – as well as intolerance – bullying from Pterosaurs because of his inability to fly – and the fabric of reality – construction of the quantum portal with the aid of the robots back to the start of the novel. In an interview with The Cleveland Weekly in 1961 when asked why all his books featured benevolent robots tinkering with time Bermond responded by asking why nobody questioned how the dinosaur could...

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Space Captain Tim
Jul02

Space Captain Tim

Space Captain Tim Adventures In The Distant Fear Zone was the first of three published science fiction novels featuring the ruggedly handsome and devoted father and space captain by Ryan Hedley, Sr during the late 1960s and early 1970s. The books were written for Hedley’s infant-then-teen son although they were marketed for an adult audience. Generally, the stories followed the heroic captain of the Space Voyager Cosmic 10 as he steered his vessel and crew through perilous space adventures all with the aim of saving his son from the clutches of Alien Witchqueen Audrey who steals the child in the opening chapter of this book. Hedley’s devotion to his own son accounts for the artwork present on each book’s cover, allowing Ryan Junior to design Space Voyager Cosmic 10 for the first in the series as well as the wrestling aliens that adorned the outside of Space Captain Tim Conquers The World Of The Warriors and the huge weapon that graced Space Captain Tim Unleashes The Ultimate Power. The latter two books were eventually withdrawn from sale and pulped as their covers were deemed to violate anti-homosexuality and obscenity laws...

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The Queen’s Dolls’ House
Jun26

The Queen’s Dolls’ House

Scans from the Girls Own Annual, 1924, featuring an article on the Dolls House built for Queen Mary, the wife of King George V, and constructed with the help of architect Sir Edwin Lutyens. Click the images for larger...

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Discs Of Despair
May19

Discs Of Despair

In 1969 an independent publisher called Flimflam Books put an advert in local newspapers across the Pacific Northwest area of America looking for authors willing to engage in a novel (no pun intended) revenue-sharing scheme. One of the first books that appeared in the stores of Seattle in early 1970 as a result of this advertisement was Discs of Despair by E.C. Clamp. Discs of Despair followed the story of two best friends, George and Henry, abducted by a UFO whilst playing with their flying disc on a beach at twilight. They effect an escape from the craft, destroying it in the process, but in doing so find themselves stranded on an alien planet. With just what they can salvage from the wreckage, their wits, and their disc to keep them occupied they search for a way home that ends up taking them through interstellar portals and eventually into a bloodthirsty disc-throwing competition with family members of the aliens who originally captured them. The novel revenue-sharing scheme revolved around playing rock-paper-scissors to determine cut of the profits. E.C. Clamp lost all three rounds against the publishing house and ended up with no royalties from sales of the book. This experience turned Clamp off writing for the rest of his...

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Sympathy For The Devil
Dec30

Sympathy For The Devil

The August 1979 publication of Heavy Metal magazine (volume 3, issue 4) contained a comic strip – or, in its own words, a Songsaga – set to the lyrics of the Rolling Stones track Sympathy For The Devil. It just so happens that despite the annoying tendency for students at university to sing along with the music it remains possibly my most favourite Stones track and since the magazine is available for viewing on the Internet Archive I thought I’d reproduce the imagery from that publication here. Heavy Metal v03 #04 Story concept: James Waley Adaptation: James Waley & Gene Day Pencils: Gene Day Inks-lettering: Bill Payne Colours: Martin Springett And, if you want to sing along...

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The Space Gamer Artwork
Dec20

The Space Gamer Artwork

Available on the Internet Archive is a number of copies of The Space Gamer, a publication mainly aimed at science fiction role playing games started in the mid 1970s. There’s something very endearing about looking at some of the earlier issues with their very amateur, hobbyist-run looks and feel and I especially like the pen-drawn artwork that breaks up the print in the...

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