What is it about a cover that grabs you? Maybe it’s a glimpse into a fantastical land, or a style of art you’ve never seen before, or a figure on the cover who is particularly compelling (or hilarious). We asked you to share the SFF book covers dynamic, unexpected, and baffling enough that they’ve remained imprinted in your memories decades after you first picked them up off the shelf.
“The trade paperbacks of Kim Stanley Robinson’s [Three Californias trilogy],” said @rakdaddy. “Mid-90s, I think. Beautiful impressionist paintings.”
@impribable shared the 50th anniversary edition cover for The Two Towers—that’s 1987, for those keeping score—”b/c even at 12 I knew there was no way Legolas looked like that.”
Jack Gaughan’s cover for Second Stage Lensmen by E.E. “Doc” Smith stuck with @dcrwrites, who “bought it when I was a kid and loved ever since”:
“The older Royal Assassin cover with mostly shirtless Fitz howling at the moon,” tweeted author Laura Lam. “Teenage me particularly liked it.”
“Dragonlance by far,” tweeted @john_zeleznik. “Larry Elmore is an icon.”
@River_Vox suggested John Christopher’s The White Mountains: “My first sci-fi book, discovered in the elementary school library.” The cover is by Roger Hane, who also illustrated the covers of several Narnia books:
@FredKiesche tweeted, “Bantam covers for S.R. Delany, 1970’s, when Dhalgren came out.”
“Anything with a Chris Foss spaceship on it,” said @Gollancz.
Did any of these covers strike a chord with you? Be sure to add your own favorite SFF covers in the comments!