Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Raindrops on roses and covers on books ...

Anyway, some book covers are a few of my favorite things.

I've opined before on this blog (IIRC, most recently in Best of Edward M. Lerner) that I don't have favorites among my own literary "children." After each book's many months -- sometimes, even, years -- of gestation, I've bonded with them all. 

That said, the covers of my books aren't my children. I get to -- and I do -- have favorites. Which we'll come to. Soon.

Some covers are of the artistic school I'll call "SF Default": generic spacecraft juxtaposed against Earth or random space rock. There's nothing wrong with that. Such covers clearly identify space-based fiction, just as other generic covers (cowboy on horse; Six-Pack-Abs Guy shirtless for no obvious reason) signal other genres. But indicating an overall genre is pretty much all this sort of cover accomplishes.

My favorites are the covers that tantalize about the story(ies) to be found inside. That catch the eye. That signal the genre without being generic. I've been fortunate enough for my writing to have inspired some truly great covers. (Some of these books have been reissued; the Kindle links beneath the covers to follow in all cases point to the current editions.)

Without further ado, here are those artistic favorites. Each cover here is well worth clicking through for a larger image.

Original edition art
Creative Destruction is a computer-oriented collection drawn from some of my early short fiction. How simply and elegantly this cover conveys a cyber theme. 

Power on :-)

Original edition art
Energized most certainly involves a manmade object in space -- that assuredly isn't your generic spacecraft. The solar-power satellite in the foreground is two miles square. How can anyone seeing this image not wish to know more?

First edition art
tweaked for
paperback re-release
Could that blood-red background be ... blood? Why, yes. Yes, it can. And those enigmatic entities swimming in the blood? Whatever might they be? They seem to be small. Are those, in fact, Small Miracles

Original edition art
The art for Fleet of Worlds almost defies description. Sure, there are worlds ... but don't they seem ... odd? Don't you just want to know more? 

Second edition art
The Company Man is, surely, SF. The space rock in the foreground and Earth in the background convey as much. But the company man on that rock? Is that, like Gregory Peck in an eponymous 1956 film, a gray flannel suit? The briefcase is certainly a nice touch.

First edition art
What exactly is the huge artifact, clearly inside the Moon? A spacecraft? Maybe. If we're already in trouble, what part in the disaster is played by this mysterious object? You can't not be curious if and how we're Déjà Doomed?

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