Vintage Treasures: The Sky Children by Donald Olson

Vintage Treasures: The Sky Children by Donald Olson

The-Sky-Children-Donald-Olson-small The-Sky-Children-Donald-Olson-back-small

I don’t know a lot about Donald Olson, but IMDB tells me The Sky Children was his only novel. He did publish three short stories, in Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine and The Twilight Zone Magazine, between 1973 and 1981, but that’s about it.

But Mr. Olson isn’t really the most intriguing thing about The Sky Children. That would be the moody and effective cover, by an uncredited artist who also produced many covers for Avon in the mid-70s, including several anthologies like Roger Elwood’s Demon Kind, and others. A little investigation has not produced an immediate answer to this riddle, so I thought I’d post it here and see if anyone can help.

The Sky Children was published by Avon Books in 1975. It is 144 pages, priced at $1.25. The cover artist is uncredited. I bought an unread copy online last month for under $1.

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ISFDB seems to think Jerome Podwil may have been the cover artist. I sent him a message through his website with a link to this article. Hopefully he’ll show up to let us know.

As for Olson, he was fairly active in the mystery field from the ’70s until his death in 2011, with a ton of stories in both AHMM and EQMM. The stuff I’ve read by him was competent and entertaining, but not quite top-level work.

Sean Wallace

He died September 5, 2011 in Jamestown, New York at the age of eighty-two and reported to have written several novels, possibly under various bylines.


Is The Sky Children a good read? And so many good cover artists are being forgotten. It’s a shame. Someone should do a comprehensive guide for all the unnamed artists from this era. Just another way for publishers to keep the creative people under their heel. I’m glad they’re finally having their day with the rise of e-publishing.

Stuart G

If you’re interested in his crime fiction, then have a look online at Galactic Central’s Crime, Mystery, and Gangster Fiction Index. He has quite a long list: publications date from 1969 up to his death.

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