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Chronicles-of-prydain

A 1990s compilation volume, the first of two. Illustrator unknown.

This is the first of a two-part article which catalogs the various printings of the eight books in Lloyd Alexander's Prydain series: the five Chronicles of Prydain books proper, and the three publications that now comprise The Foundling and Other Tales of Prydain. Holt, Rinehart and Winston published one book of the Chronicles annually in hardback from 1964 to 1968. Dell Yearling then published the books in paperback beginning in 1969.

Evaline Ness illustrated the cover art for each of the first editions of these eight books, and the interior art of the first two storybooks. Margot Zemach drew the interior illustrations for the first edition of The Foundling.... Later editions of the Chronicles have featured covers by fantasy-art luminaries such as Don Maitz, Jody Lee and the Walt Disney Studios animators.

This page, Part One, catalogs the first three books in the series: The Book of Three, The Black Cauldron and The Castle of Llyr. Part Two catalogs Taran Wanderer, The High King and the three publications that now comprise The Foundling and Other Tales of Prydain.





The Book of Three

BookofThree1stEdition

Publisher
Holt, Rinehart and Winston (US)
Publication date
August 1964
Media type
Print (hardcover & paperback)
Pages
217 pp (hardcover 1st ed.); 224 pp (paperback)
ISBN
ISBN 0-8050-0874-8 (first edition)
OCLC Number
17720934
LC Classification
PZ7.A3774 Bn
Book of three1
The 1st ed. hardback of August 1964 features art by Evaline Ness (see infobox at right), apparently in a mixed-media collage of cut-outs in pencil, ink and tempera. Dell Yearling, "by arrangement with Holt, Rinehart", reprinted this cover in paperback (First Printing 1969, Third Printing 1972). The flat, cartoony style was in vogue at the time, its lively composition conveying a whimsical feel.
Book-of-Three2

The Laurel-Leaf cover art (with more recent frame) by artist Jean Leon Huens.

By the Ninth Dell Printing in March 1979, the cover art has been replaced by Don Maitz's oil painting, with loose brushwork and dynamic musculature evoking the more realistic -- and at once more expressionistic -- style of popular fantasy artist Frank Frazetta.


In July 1980 Dell Laurel-Leaf printed new, pocket-book editions with art by Jean-Léon Huens. These were extremely popular; by July 1984 Dell had printed ten editions of this cover.

Book of Three Flip

The 1990s cover by Jody Lee.

The book of three

The 2000s cover by David Wyatt.


In April 1990 Dell Yearling began printing gorgeous new covers illustrated by Jody Lee (see left) in what look to be watercolors and colored pencils. Ms. Lee is very much at the top of her game here, with vibrant color enhancing, rather than distracting from, the nuanced and highly realistic portraiture on display.

A newer edition put out by Square Fish -- a Macmillan imprint representing the best of Henry Holt's backlists -- appeared in June 2011, with a digital cover painting by David Wyatt (see right). The style of the piece is a bit cartoonish, though atmospheric, and is laudable for its text-accurate portrayal of a scene so exaggerated in previous covers by Maitz and Huens. There is also a fine Spanish-language cover, which you can see on the home page of this wiki.

Bookofthree puffin

The British Puffin edition cover, 2000s.


The Black Cauldron

BlackCauldron1stEdition

Publisher
Holt, Rinehart and Winston (US)
Publication date
June 1965
Media type
Print (hardcover & paperback)
Pages
224 pp (hardcover 1st ed.); 229 pp (paperback)
ISBN
ISBN 0-8050-0992-2 (first edition)
OCLC Number
302887
LC Classification
PZ7.A3774 B1
Black Cauldron2

English hardcover, artist currently unknown.

The 1st ed. hardback of June 1965 features art by Evaline Ness (see infobox at right), apparently in a mixed-media collage of cut-outs in pencil, ink and tempera. Dell Yearling, "by arrangement with Holt, Rinehart", reprinted this cover in paperback (First Printing March 1969). The flat, cartoony style was in vogue at the time, its lively composition conveying a whimsical feel.
Black Cauldron4

The Dell 1970s cover by Don Maitz.

English publisher Heinemann printed a more traditionally illustrated hardcover, though their version gives away the climax of the book!
Black-Cauldron-Disney-cover

The mid-80s Laurel-Leaf edition with the Disney artwork.

By the Eighth Dell Printing in March 1979, the cover art has been replaced by Don Maitz's more realistic oil painting, with loose brushwork and atmospheric clouds recalling Frazetta's expressionistic style.


Black Cauldron3

The Laurel-Leaf cover art (with more recent frame) by Huens.

BlackCauldron7

The 1990s cover by Jody Lee.

In July 1980 Dell Laurel-Leaf printed new, pocket-book editions with art by Jean Leon Huens. These were extremely popular; by August 1984 Dell had printed nine editions of this cover. In 1985, both the Yearling and Laurel-Leaf imprints began printing editions with art from the Disney film.
The Black Cauldron

The 2000s cover by David Wyatt.

In April 1990 Dell Yearling began printing gorgeous new covers illustrated by Jody Lee in what look to be watercolors and colored pencils. Ms. Lee is very much at the top of her game here, with vibrant color enhancing, rather than distracting from, the nuanced and highly realistic portraiture on display.

A newer edition put out by Square Fish -- a Macmillan imprint representing the best of Henry Holt's backlists -- appeared in 2011, with a digital cover painting by David Wyatt. The piece is impressive, depicting a dramatic scene never before illustrated, of the Huntsmen of Annuvin attacking a lovely yet understandably defensive Princess Eilonwy.

The Castle of Llyr

CastleofLlyr1stEdition

Publisher
Holt, Rinehart and Winston (US)
Publication date
1966
Media type
Print (hardcover & paperback)
Pages
204 pp (hardcover 1st ed.); 206 pp (paperback)
ISBN
ISBN 0-8050-1115-3 (first edition)
OCLC Number
302887
LC Classification
22921733
Castleofllyr

The Dell 1970s cover by Don Maitz.

The 1st ed. hardback of 1966 features art by Evaline Ness (see infobox at right), apparently in a mixed-media collage of cut-outs in pencil, ink and tempera. Dell Yearling, "by arrangement with Holt, Rinehart", reprinted this cover in paperback (First Printing June 1969). The flat, cartoony style was in vogue at the time, its lively composition conveying a whimsical feel.
The Castle of Llyr9

The Laurel-Leaf cover art by Huens.

By the Sixth Dell Printing in December 1978, the cover art has been replaced by Don Maitz's more realistic oil painting, with loose brushwork, bright colors and atmospheric clouds recalling Frazetta's expressionistic style.

In July 1980 Dell Laurel-Leaf printed new, pocket-book editions with art by Jean Leon Huens. These were extremely popular; by December 1984 Dell had printed seven editions of this cover.

In April 1990 Dell Yearling began printing gorgeous new covers illustrated by Jody Lee in what look to be watercolors and colored pencils. Ms. Lee is very much at the top of her game here, with vibrant color enhancing, rather than distracting from, the nuanced and highly realistic portraiture on display.
Achren-and-Eilonwy

The 1990s cover by Jody Lee.

The castle of llyr

The 2000s cover by Wyatt.

Castle-of-llyr11

The 1st Dell paperback, same as the hardcover with a black border.


A newer edition put out by Square Fish -- a Macmillan imprint representing the best of Henry Holt's backlists -- appeared in August 2011, with a digital cover painting by David Wyatt. The piece, depicting the doom of Caer Colur, is a dynamic lightshow which, while very pretty, somewhat minimizes the role the human characters play in the event.

Illustrators Mini-Bios

Evaline Ness (April 24, 1911 – August 12, 1986) was an American commercial artist, illustrator, and author of children's books. As illustrator of picture books she was one of three Caldecott Medal runners-up each year 1964 to 1966 and she won the 1967 Medal for Sam, Bangs, and Moonshine, which she also wrote. She illustrated more than thirty books for young readers and wrote several of her own. She is noted for using a great variety of artistic media and methods.

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