Missouri-born illustrator Virginia Frances Sterrett (1900–1931) managed to complete just three books in her short life, all of them commissioned by the Penn Publishing Company: Old French Fairy Tales (1920), Tanglewood Tales (1921), and Arabian Nights (1928). She was diagnosed with tuberculosis at the age of 19, around the time she received that first commission. David Apatoff wrote a lovely appreciation of her work and life at his Illustration Art.
Though Sterrett's work has been featured all over the internet, I can't resist including it on 50 Watts.
I intend to do a separate post on Old French Tales.Golden Age Comic Book Stories has done the definitive post on Sterrett's Arabian Nights (a book which took her three years to complete due to her illness).
Also see: Harry Clarke's Fairy Tales