April 22, 2013 § 6 Comments
(Arthur Hawkins’ cover for the 1959 edition of Skyport (1959), Curt Siodmak)
Part II of my series on cover art depicting space stations (Part I). Here are vast assortment of primarily Alex Schomburg and Vincent Di Fate’s artwork — they did love their space stations. But, I think my favorite is by far Arthur Hawkins’ cover for the 1959 edition of Curt Siodmak’s Skyport (1959) — the author is of course famous for the novel Donovan’s Brain (1942). The delightful color scheme, the 50s aesthetic, the vague indication of continents below, the cluster of « Read the rest of this entry »
April 8, 2013 § 19 Comments
On the cross, a future prophet (or false one)? A martyr for a lost cause? Or, some future priestly emissary of the Catholic church dispensing law on those gathered…. Perhaps some transformation of man to a godly state all hallowed and arrayed with religious accouterments of faith? I’ve gathered a fun collection of science fiction prophets mostly decked out / depicted in distinctly Christian style.
My favorite is Robert Foster’s cover for the 1970 edition of Behold the Man (1969) by Michael Moorcock…. And Gray Morrow’s cover for the 1970 edition of This Immortal (variant title: And Call Me Conrad) (1965) contains a fascinating color scheme — although there isn’t any mold on the figure’s face as Zelazny « Read the rest of this entry »
March 1, 2013 § 24 Comments
I love the idea of a community of science fiction reviewers — so I’ve put together a list of a handful of book review blogs focused on classic/slightly more esoteric science fiction. Obviously there are plenty of great blogs I’ve omitted that have reviews of new releases or only occasional vintage science fiction…. Or, blogs that refrain from reviews of vintage science fiction unless participating in certain reading challenges….
Please visit them, comment on their reviews, and browse through their back catalogues.
1] Speculiction….: An under visited /commented on blog with quality book reviews of classic science fiction — however, the reviewer, Jesse, is limited by the lack of older science fiction available to him in Poland. I especially enjoyed his reviews of Ballard’s “beautifully strange enigma” that is The Crystal World (1966) and of course, my favorite science fiction novel of all time, John Brunner’s magisterial Stand on Zanzibar (1968). An index of his reviews can be found here. He also has a good mix of newer science fiction reviews as well.
Adventures in Science Fiction Cover Art: The Composite Cover (illustrating a multiplicity of scenes, stories, thematic elements) Part II
February 18, 2013 § 20 Comments
(Vincent di Fate’s cover for the 1975 edition of The Other Side of Tomorrow (1973), ed. Roger Elwood)
My second composite cover post — here’s a link to Part I if you missed it. I’ve included a few covers by Vincent di Fate who has always been one of my favorite illustrators of the 1970s. His cover for The Other Side of Tomorrow (1973) is top-notch. A conglomerations of screens are placed on a barren stylized landscape where two figures gaze intently at them. Each screen shows a different scene, a space station, spaceships, a boy’s contemplative face, an old man — and, a ringed planet looms in the background. Whether or not the screens illustrate individual stories in the collection is unclear — regardless, the composite nature of the illustration is « Read the rest of this entry »
February 13, 2013 § 11 Comments
An eclectic grab bag of books… The last remaining gifts from 2thD… And a few from bookstores I’ve visited over the past few months. Two are complete mysteries — Bamber’s The Sea is Boiling Hot (1971) and Rossiter’s Tetrasomy Two (1974) — both author’s only published sci-fi novel. I don’t have high hopes — although, the premise of the former is fantastic — domed cities and over pollution!
My second collection of Tiptree shorts — was impressed with a handful of stories in her most famous collection Ten Thousand Light-Years from Home (1973). I find her work hit or miss… Unfortunately, there are some books that I can never convince myself to review. Although published in the 80s, Byte Beautiful (1985) contains mostly 70s stories so it is firmly within my era….
And Shaw, well, Shaw is Shaw — utterly average but always (at least so far) suprisingly satisfying…
1. The Sea is Boiling Hot, George Bamber (1971) (MY REVIEW)
(Jack Gaughan’s cover for the « Read the rest of this entry »
Adventures in Science Fiction Cover Art: Planetary Rovers + Exploration Craft + Transport Vehicles of the Future
February 6, 2013 § 15 Comments
(Alex Schomburg’s cover for the November 1964 issue of Amazing Science Fiction and Fact)
I’ve put together a vast assortment of futuristic planetary transport vehicles — high tech lunar rovers, personal levitating (by mysterious forces) transport craft glorified cargo tractors, self-propelling robotic brains, large exploration vehicles trekking across vast alien landscapes… Due to the subject matter the art tends to be in the more realistic vein — à la the classic art of Chelsey Bonestell, Alex Schomburg, and other greats. The Paul Lehr’s cover for Robert Heinlein’s Farmer in the Sky (1950) adds a nice fantastical take on the subject.
I found that Chelsey Bonestell’s cover for the April 1955 issue of « Read the rest of this entry »
Adventures in Science Fiction Cover Art: The Composite Cover (illustrating a multiplicity of scenes, stories, thematic elements)
January 27, 2013 § 24 Comments
(Ed Emshwiller’s cover for the 1954 edition of Murder in Space (1944), David V. Reed)
Ed Emshwiller’s cover for the 1954 edition of Murder in Space (1944) perfectly embodies the composite cover comprised of sequences from the narrative. Our hero (or villain) plots the murder in the foreground (guns, books, furrowed brow), commits the murder in the background, his love interest looks over his left shoulder (she’s constantly on his mind), and some random astroids/planets (let’s call them space rocks), a spaceship, and a strange piece of technology alert us to the science fiction aspect of the narrative… The uncredited cover for the 1955 edition of The Altered « Read the rest of this entry »
January 20, 2013 § 20 Comments
(David Bergen’s cover for the 1978 edition of Sea-Horse in the Sky (1969), Edmund Cooper)
Here’s Part II of my cover art series on the delightfully nebulous theme of mysterious spheres (Part I). I’ve selected a variety of spheres: including spheres elevated in the air (balloon representations of the sun? planets? large scale planetary orbit models?), spherical eggs hatching men?, alien warships, alien (and human) transportation devices, strange atomic technology, obvious Death Star ripoffs, fields littered with the perplexing shapes….
… and even the simple unadorned sphere held aloft to indicate the pure delight of « Read the rest of this entry »
December 31, 2012 § 8 Comments
Intriguing literary sci-fi by Craig Strete and John Crowley…
Works of unknown quality, Bruce McAllister’s Humanity Prime (1971) and Nelson Bond’s collection No Time Like the Future (1954)…
And one of my favorite Powers’ covers.
1. Humanity Prime, Bruce McAllister (1971)
(David Meltzer’s cover for the 1971 edition) « Read the rest of this entry »