Arthur Henry Sarsfield Ward was born to a working-class Irish Catholic family on 15th February, 1883, in Birmingham, U.K. More commonly known as the British novelist, “Sax Rohmer“, he created the evil ‘Dr. Fu Manchu‘, who featured in a variety of stories. It is rumored that Rohmer belonged to the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, as well as being a member of the Rosicrucians; however confirmation of this is unsure and there is a suggestion that he may have boasted about these activities in order to increase his literary reputation as an occult writer. The illustrative header for this post is by R.W. Southurst, for the paperback cover from the “The Mystery of Dr. Fu Manchu”, (1960).
The inset for this post is from Sax Rohmer’s novel, “Sinister Madonna,” which features, Sumuru: a female variation on Fu Manchu. (The Sumuru series consisted of five books). “Sinister Madonna’s,” cover is by Charles Ashford Binger; a British-born painter and commercial artist who found some success in Hollywood illustrating film posters and pulp novel covers over a period stretching from the 1920s to the 1970’s. Other notable covers by Binger include: “The Illustrated Man” and a couple of Marilyn Monroe film posters – “Niagara,” and “River of No Return.”
As a ‘har’-Binger for pulp fiction sales – Who said – Sax never sells?