Premier Series

T. Nelson & Sons Ltd. (London, UK)
Series dates: 1919-1960
Size: 5″ x 7.5″

premier_logoNelson & Sons had an extensive array of juvenile series in part aimed at the lucrative market in “prize books” for pre-college students. As with many cheap series, the price point varied. The Premier Series was a middling affair: Nelson’s Britannic Series (3s./6d.) and New Era Series (2s./6d.) cost more than the Premier Series (at 2s.). Cheaper yet was the Triumph Series (1s./6d.), Edinburgh Rewards Series (1s./6d.) and Children’s Own Series (1s.). A catalog containing all these series (and their titles) is below. The books were larger in format than Nelson’s Classics with similar cheap paper and bindings. Titles with the Premier Series name were printed until at least 1960. Jackets and binding varied for later copies.

This undated copy of J.S. Margerison’s Midshipman Rex Carew, V.C. is undated but appears to be from the 1920s (identical copies are dated 1918 and 1920). A gift inscription seems to read 1938, however (see endpaper scan below). It’s possible that Nelson printed copious amounts of these books and they were available for sale long after they were printed. The series name is prominent on the jacket spine and bottom of the front of the jacket. The spine is illustrated. The jackets are unique to each title. The front (and rear) jacket flaps are blank.


Additional titles in the series are listed on the back of the jacket. The titles are segregated by gender. 35 titles are listed on this jacket.


Bindings are cheap cloth, with an imprinted design mimicking the jacket.


A “Prize” sticker on the front endpapers.


The book has no half-title page. An illustration (monochrome) from the book faces the title page. There are no other illustrations in the book. There is no copyright page in the book.


A catalog of Nelson juvenile series covers six pages at the rear of the book. The Britannic Series:


The New Era Series:


The Premier Series:


The Triumph Series:


The Edinburgh Rewards Series:


And the Children’s Own series: