Saturday, August 16, 2008

Love on Ward B

Published by Prion Books on 1 September 2008. Follow-up to the Valentine Picture Library volume published by Prion in February 2008. Not my usual thing, I'll admit, but a fun volume featuring the adventures of nurse Sally Brown who starred in sixty or so adventures published in the Hospital Nurse Romance Library in 1964-66.

Order your copy from


Naughty Nurse (HNPL 10, Jun 1964)
First Love (HNPL 14, Aug 1964)
Man Crazy (HNPL 15, Sep 1964)
Cure for Diane (HNPL 23, Jan 1965)
Live and Love (HNPL 31, May 1965)
Blues for a Beat Boy (HNPL 32, May 1965)

Here's where I show my ignorance of romance comics: I don't have a clue who wrote or drew these. They were original British strips but drawn by anonymous Spanish artists.


Blonde and impossibly beautiful, Sally Brown is a probationary nurse at General Hospital and the star of Hospital Nurse Picture Library. With her friend and colleague Maureen Evans she patrols the kind of wards that would have been familiar to her readers thanks to television. Emergency Ward 10 had been running since 1957 so everyone knew that hospitals were buildings full of dishy doctors and patients in need of a little tender loving care. The Hospital Nurse series was first launched in 1963 and for years thereafter, young girls, young women and not-so-young women invested a shilling each month to keep up with the romantic adventures of young Sally Brown. In the 1960s, nursing was second only to being an air hostess when it came to glamorous occupations for girls. Tales like "First Love", "Live and Love", "Kiss and Remember" and "Fooling With Love" tap into the obvious elements of love and romance - but titles like "Man Crazy" and "Naughty Nurse" hint that there is more fun to be had in these picture stories than between the prim covers of a Mills and Boon novel.If you think hospitals are just sterile wards full of sick people, think again.


full bleed, front & back covers


"Sally Brown is a probationary nurse who manages to fall in love with various male patients and solve everyone's problems, including those of the ward sister, who gave up the man she loved for the sake of her very best friend who subsequently died in childbirth! These are perfect romances for any generation - the fact they were written half a century ago doesn't detract from their appeal in any way whatsoever - hospitals are timeless in the setting they provide for such stories. The printing and binding is great, and as a companion volume to last year's Valentine story picture library, it's something to be treasured."Paul Edmund Norman, Gateway Monthly.

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