James E McConnell was one of the last century’s finest and most prolific commercial artists working in publishing.
In a career spanning from the 1930s to the 1970s, McConnell produced hundreds of superb paintings for hardback dust jackets and paperback covers (as well as magazines such as LOOK AND LEARN, advertising posters, even jigsaw puzzles), working for noted British publishers large and small, including Collins, Cassell, Robert Hale, Corgi, Pan, Amalgamated/Fleetway, Hutchinson and many others. He is perhaps best remembered for his Western-themed pieces, but his work spanned a wide range of genres, including crime, science fiction, romance and children’s. Amongst his most celebrated works were covers for Cassell’s editions of SAX ROHMER’S FU MANCHU books; highly collectable JOHN D MACDONALD and JAMES M CAIN thrillers and LOZANIA PROLE romances for Robert Hale; BERKELEY GRAY and VERNON WARREN crime novels for Collins and John Gifford respectively; Thames’ editions of CAPT W E JOHNS’ children’s adventure novels featuring BIGGLES; Arrow paperbacks of EDGAR WALLACE mysteries; and over a dozen Pinnacle paperbacks of EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS’ famous TARZAN and sci-fi novels.
In MINIATURE MARVELS – the first book ever to be devoted to McConnell – noted researcher and author Steve Chibnall, a leading authority on mass-market publishing in 20th Century Britain, presents a fascinating biography of the artist, compiled with the full cooperation of his estate. The book is lavishly illustrated with hundreds of superb full-colour reproductions of McConnell’s work and contains a full, detailed listing of all of his covers.
‘A must-have for anyone who appreciates the art of the book cover.’ Steve Holland, https://bearalley.blogspot.com/2023/06/miniature-marvels-book-cover-art-of.html
‘What a superb book! I went through it page by page over the past two days, and read much of it. The good artwork just goes on and on and on.’ Bud Plant, Bud’s Art Books
Copies of this book are available to USA-based customers through the following retailers:
Bud’s Comics and Art: https://www.budsartbooks.com
352pp. Large format 11×8.5-format full colour hardback.
Published 15 June 2023