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Mandeville Publications & Spring Books (1949-1955)


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The Tom Merry books were written by Charles Hamilton initially under his Gem alter ego Martin Clifford, presumably to emulate the success of the Bunter books published by Charles Skilton.

The Tom Merry (and Jack of All Trades and Rookwood) novels were published by Mandeville Publications, established by the publisher and author Richard March. He also published the Tom Merry Annuals, and the first three Billy Bunter's Own. Many of the Tom Merry novels were almost immediately reprinted by Spring Books, and later republished under Spring Books "Fanfare" imprint.

It is unclear what the relationship was between Mandeville and Spring as the editions had significant differences - the Mandeville editions were printed on better paper, with a frontispiece and illustrations in the text, whereas the Spring reprinted editions originally had no illustrations and a different dust wrapper. The initial Mandeville editions were published at 6 shillings. Later volumes from around 1951 cost 7/6 and were advertised in the pages of the Gold Hawk paperbacks.

Mandeville publications ceased trading in 1954, at which point Spring Books took over publishing new Tom Merry novels, but with Frank Richards acknowledged as the author.

Spring Books also published a variety of collections of boys' fiction (such as the Big Parade for Boys).

Note that there were 8 Jack of All Trades books written, though only 3 were published during Frank Richards' lifetime. The Friars Club is in the process of publishing all 8 books.

 

Title

Author

Published

       
 

Tom Merry & Co. of St. Jimís

Martin Clifford

May 1949 (Spring reprint 1949)

 

The Secret of the Study

Martin Clifford

October 1949 (Spring reprint 1950)

 

Talbotís Secret

Martin Clifford

1949 (Spring reprint September 1951)

 

Rallying Round Gussy

Martin Clifford

May 1950

 

The Scapegrace of St. Jimís

Martin Clifford

June 1951 (Spring reprint 1951)

 

Trouble for Tom Merry

Frank Richards

1953 (Spring edition)

 

Down and Out

Frank Richards

1953

 

Cardewís Catch

Frank Richards

1954

 

The Disappearance of Tom Merry

Frank Richards

1954

 

Tom Merryís Triumph

Frank Richards

1955

 

Tom Merry & Co. - Caravanners

Frank Richards

1955

 

Through Thick and Thin

Frank Richards

1955

 
 

The Rivals of Rookwood School

Owen Conquest

September 1951 (Spring reprint 1951)

 

1

Jack of All Trades

Frank Richards

July 1950 (reprinted Friars' Library 2011)

2

Jackís the Lad

Frank Richards

1954 (Spring edition) (reprinted Friars' Library 2012)

3

Jack of the Circus

Frank Richards

1955 (reprinted Friars' Library 2011)

4

Jack on his Own

Frank Richards

Friars' Library

5

Jack Goes South

Frank Richards

Friars' Library 2011

6

Jack in Africa

Frank Richards

Friars' Library 2012

7

Jack in Danger

Frank Richards

Friars' Library 2012

8

Jack on the Treasure Trail

Frank Richards

Friars' Library 2013

 

The Jack short stories

Frank Richards

Friars' Library 2013


Big Parade For Boys (c. 1959)

This was a hard-back collection of short stories for boys by a wide variety of authors, published by Spring Books (who also published the St. Jims post war novels). A companion volume The Big Parade for Girls was also published.

Page

Title

Author

Source

7

Perkinsonís Promise [Felgate]

Frank Richards

RGBOS 1951

132

Bad Luck for Bundle! A School Story of 1970 [Dolcot]

Frank Richards

TMO 1954

226

Bad Luck for Billy Bunter

Frank Richards

TMO 1951

323

Trouble for Three [Felgate]

Frank Richards

RGBOS 1954

343

Spot of Luck [Felgate]

Frank Richards

RGBOS 1951

374

Sportsman! [Felgate]

Frank Richards

RGBOS 1950


New Target Book For Boys (1960)

Published by Spring Books, this contained a variety of school and adventure stories, including:

Just Like Bunter

Frank Richards

TMO 1954

 

Leg Up for Langdale [Felgate]

Frank Richards

RGBOS 1954


New Target Book For Girls (1960)

Published by Spring Books, this contained a variety of school and adventure stories, including:

Jack and Jill

Frank Richards

BBO 1954

 

Bessie Bunter Forgets

Hilda Richards

TMO 1953


Searchlight: Adventure Stories for Boys (c.1960)

This was a hefty (380 pages) story book published by Spring Books that contained 36 short stories, including at least two Charles Hamilton stories:

Chancing it with Charne [Felgate]

Frank Richards

RGBOS 1950

Treasure of Temooka [King of the Islands]

Charles Hamilton

BBO 1953


"Tom Merry & Co. of St. Jim's" by Martin Clifford © Mandeville Books 1949 "The Secret of the Study" by Martin Clifford © Mandeville Books 1949 "Talbot's Secret" by Martin Clifford © Mandeville Books 1949 "Rallying Round Gussy" by Martin Clifford © Mandeville Books 1950 "The Scapegrace of St. Jim's" by Martin Clifford © Mandeville Books 1951 "The Rivals of Rookwood" by Owen Conquest © Mandeville Books 1951 "Tom Merry & Co. of St. Jim's" by Martin Clifford © Spring Books 1949 "The Secret of the Study" by Martin Clifford © Spring Books 1950 "Talbot's Secret" by Martin Clifford © Spring Books 1951 "The Scapegrace of St. Jim's" by Martin Clifford © Spring Books 1951 "The Rivals of Rookwood" by Owen Conquest © Spring Books 1951 "Trouble for Tom Merry" by Frank Richards © Spring Books 1953 "Down and Out" by Frank Richards © Spring Books 1953 "Cardew's Catch" by Frank Richards © Spring Books 1954 "The Disappearance of Tom Merry" by Frank Richards © Spring Books 1954 "Jack's The Lad" by Frank Richards © Spring Books 1954 "Tom Merry's Triumph" by Frank Richards © Spring Books 1955 "Tom Merry & Co. Caravanners" by Frank Richards © Spring Books 1955 "Through Thick and Thin" by Frank Richards © Spring Books 1955 "Jack of the Circus" by Frank Richards © Spring Books 1955 "The Big Parade for Boys" "Searchlight Adventure Stories for Boys"


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