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A collection of bad SF covers

April 17, 2013

It is difficult to overstate the importance of a good cover.  Covers, after all, really do sell books.  The best covers are those which entice readers towards the stories contained within, but at the same time give an accurate impression of what is to come.

Here are a few science fiction covers which don’t even come close.


Because this is totally the sort of thing you want to be holding in public.  The main problem here is that the cover gives the impression of this being a generic romance series; needless to say, it isn’t.


The Puppet Masters has been given numerous good covers over the years; this wasn’t one of them.  Bonus points for depicting a scene which never actually appears in the novel itself.


Protip: if your front cover looks like a ten-minute photoshop job, then you might want to have another go.


Oddly enough, anthropomorphic dogs don’t show up in the story itself.


Originally titled “Needle”, this book had its name changed for reasons known only to the publisher.  Quite what is supposed to be going on in this image is anyone’s guess.  Unsurprisingly, later editions went back to the original title.


… unfortunately, the bad covers continued.


I just…that’s it.  I’m done.

In case you’re wondering, I’ve read all of these except for The Puppies of Terra.  Lilith’s Brood is a work of genius that I would recommend to just about anyone; ditto The Puppet Masters.  The Wild Boy is…okay, but its plot is driven a bit too much by characters making boneheaded decisions.  Needle and The Mount, meanwhile, can probably be skipped unless you’re a die-hard SF nut.

PS: the next Farhome House post should be appearing at some point tomorrow.  I apologise for the delay; I’ve been having a bit of trouble getting any words out on it lately.


From → SF articles

  1. These are….awesome.

  2. I feel…enlightened! xx

  3. If you don’t know about it I recommend Good Show Sir…. A site which collects such things — and you could submit!

    • Hi Joachim,

      Thanks a lot for posting this. I do go on Good Show Sir from time to time, but have never actually submitted anything. Maybe I will in the near future 🙂

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