Tuesday, 31 August 2010


Cover photograph by Carl Flatlow.

Crop of a painting by Francisco Melo, from the article Robo-Shock!

Painting by Ichiro Tsuruta from the article Robots At Home.


Pierrot softcover 1978. Cover painting Sentry Biot by Jim Burns.
 "In MECHANISMO the future has come. In MECHANISMO intergalactic space travel has arrived, biotic robots are a thing of the present, space ports to service the stars and planets are real, space cities are inhabited, fantastic machines, time machines, battle robots and massive computers exist here and now. 
In MECHANISMO you can see a gaussi fighter in full colour and then as an engineer's technical drawing with the armaments, drive power and all specifications given in great detail. Here you will discover the most startling machines illustrated specially for the book: troop carriers, personnel craft, giant time machines, a computer that would fill an entire city and cities built in the image of man, visited by alien races. You will see too the technical drawings for an actual planned NASA space colony, twenty five miles long and two miles in diameter. 
In MECHANISMO you become part of the future and can live through the illustrations in worlds that may one day exist."
Painting by Bob Layzell.

Painting by Bob Layzell.

Painting by Colin Hay.

Painting by Alan Daniels.

Painting by Tony Roberts.


Ace paperback, 1967. Cover by John Schoenherr.

"The ship was to be seven miles long, a third of a mile in diameter and have a wing-spread of three and a half miles. It would take two and a half centuries to construct. Its announced purpose: to carry humanity away from its ruined world, from the world that had become a perpetual purgatory. 
To build this vast ship would requie the undivided activity of an entire nation and would mean carrying out a ruthless program of war and conquest, of annihilation and reconstruction, and of education and rediscovery. 
But was this starship really what it claimed to be? Or was their a greater secret behind its incredible cost - a secret so strange that no man dared reveal it?"


NEL paperback, March 1978. Cover painting by
Bruce Pennington.

"Frank Herbert's Dune, winner of both the Hugo and Nebula awards, was one of the most famous and widely read science fiction novels ever written. It was followed by the equally acclaimed Dune Messiah and now, with Children of Dune, comes the magnificent finale to this epic series. 
Old Paul Atreides, who led the Fremen to domination of the human galaxy, is gone now, and arrakis itself is slowly changing; ecological change has brought vast areas of greenery and even open water to the desert planet. But all is not well; the altered climate is threatening extinction to the sandworms which are essential to the planet's economy, and the rule of the Atreides family is being challenged by fanatics and their worst enemy, Baron Vladimir Harkonnen. 
These are problems potentially far more deadly than any Paul had had to contend with. How the Children of Dune faced up to them creates an impressive climax to one of science fiction's greatest achievements."

Monday, 30 August 2010


Pierrot softcover, 1979.
 "This epic tale of a doughty band of space pioneers who forge a railroad across Strabismus, the frontier of space, is lifted into the stratosphere with 50 pages of the most spectacular illustrations known to man. Jim Burns's long-awaited collaboration with Harry Harrison has produced a breath-taking set of images in a wild and witty space opera where a robot track-layer emerges from a vast spacecraft to crash its way through alien cities and uninhabited wastes."
Text is copyright © 1979 by Harry Harrison, illustrations are copyright © 1979 by Jim Burns.

Scoutship Pilot.

Professor Shlek.
 "The man, a thin and seedy-looking individual with a wispy grey beard and terminal acne, checked his crates then plugged into the viewscreen."
Robot Reception Guard.
"The robot riflemen raised their atomic rifles and fired a volley into the air; all except one defective robot who blew the head off the robot standing next to him. Cursing a vile oath, the Colonel issued another command and all of the other robots turned and fired and disintegrated their erring comrade."

Sunday, 29 August 2010


Paper Tiger hardcover, 1977. Cover painting by Roger Dean.

The Einstein Intersection by Peter Elson.

The Ship That Sang by Angus McKie.

Before The Golden Age by Tony Roberts.

Untitled, painting by Angus McKie.

The Alien Way by Bruce Pennington.

The Princess Of Mars by Bruce Pennington.

Saturday, 28 August 2010


Mayflower paperback, first American edition 1979. © Young Artists. Cover painting by Les Edwards
"Alien worlds have always been a central excitement in science fiction. Imaginary landscapes, some surreal, others realistic, are highly important to the novels in which they are contained. Many of these worlds are carefully constructed, realistically detailed and vividly imagined. 
ALIEN LANDSCAPES explores ten of the best-known worlds with a detailed text explaining their history & politics, climate, geography, flora & fauna and their location in the galaxy. All are brilliantly visualized in 30 original paintings, specially commissioned from ten of the best sf and fantasy illustrators. 
See in full colour the spectacular worlds of Arthur C Clarke's Rama; Anne McCaffrey's Pern; the Okie Cities of James Blish; Hal Clement's Mesklin; Harry Harrison's Eros; the Arrakis of Frank Herbert's Dune; Larry Niven's Ringworld; Trantor from Asimov's Foundation Trilogy; Brian Aldiss's Hothouse and the End of the World of H G Wells. These illustrations give an inspired reality to the life and times 'out there' from the full planetary view right down to the details of landscapes and society."
First Contact by Jim Burns.
 "After Lieutenant Pak and the Dragonfly crashed near the south pole he became the first explorer to encounter a Biot. This was one of the most abundant forms, the scavenger, which played an important part in recycling waste material on Rama. Here it is slicing up the remnants of the Dragonfly with its scissor-like claws and placing the pieces in a storage cavity on its back with the help of appendages closely resembling human hands."
Okie City, Trading Contact by John Harris.
 "In orbit around a colonized world, the Okie City of New York, with its familiar Manhattan skyline, makes contact with a space vessel sent up by the colonists to make first trade-contact. Such stops frequently include the transfer of some personnel, some city dwellers deciding to apply for immigration permission, some colonists requesting permission to come aboard the flying city and make a life for the stars."
Storm Debris On Mesklin by Tony Roberts.
 "A hurricane has raged across the equatorial area of Mesklin wreaking immense damage to life and land, and reaching deep into the sea itself. This huge deep-ocean creature has been cast onto a sandy beach, dead and rotting. An earthman, wearing the heavy, life-supporting suit that enables him to walk despite the 6 times normal gravity, tries to dig a sample of the creature for analysis, but he has no instrument strong enough to tear into the 'teak-wood' like tissue of the monster. The tiny Mesklinites, a group of traders, gather round to watch, and solve the problem themselves' their forward pincers are able to cut tungsten steel, and they snip off pieces of the creature with ease, eating more than they give to the earthman."
The Valley by Colin Hay.
 "From a vantage point high above the valley the pronounced curvature of the small world can clearly be seen. A river runs the length of the valley, providing a natural barrier between the two primitive communities. The valley's 'sun' is actually a ball of plasma in a controlled fusion reaction; it runs across the 'sky' (whose illusion of reality is complete even at close proximity) on tracks. Here, having finished its daily traverse of the sky, the sun is about to enter the interior of the asteroid, where it will cross under the valley in time to emerge above the distant mountains for tomorrow's dawn. Night is about to fall: in the valley the villagers hurry to the safety of their villages as Coatlicue emerges to stalk the fields and marshes."
Sandworm And A Rider by Terry Oakes.
 "At the fringe of the deep desert the Fremen have summoned a Sandworm by means of a 'Thumper'. Now the Hookman mounts the worm, holding open the fore edge of the ring segments with his Maker hooks. Other Fremen wait to follow once the Hookman has control. This is a medium-sized worm, perhaps 250 metres long; in the deep desert worms may grow to almost double its size."
Ringworld Surface At Night by Stuart Hughes.
"Only at night can the true awesomeness of the ringworld be appreciated on its surface. In daylight the landscape dwindles away into a hazy, horizonless infinity; at night the arch of the Ringworld becomes visible, soaring overhead - a mere line of brightness at its apex - and descending again at the other side (behind the vantage point of this picture). At night it is possible to appreciate the sheer immensity of the ringworld. The mountain in the right foreground is the thousand-mile-high first-of-god, formed by the impact of a meteorite striking the underside of the ringworld and causing even the fantastically strong foundation material to bulge inwards."

Friday, 27 August 2010


Virgin Books hardback, 1997. Cover painting by Paul Lehr.

Painting by Fred Freeman, from LIFE magazine, July 11th, 1960 illustrating the article
Man Remade To Live In Space.

Painting by John Schoenherr, for John Berryman's The Trouble With Telstar, from Analog magazine,
June 1963.

Trantorian Dream by Michael Whelan. 

Painting for Laurence Manning's The Man Who Awoke by Dean Ellis.

Painting by Paul Lehr for Berkley's The Astounding Science Fiction Reader.

Illustration by Bob Pepper for the New American Library edition of Starburst,
by Alfred Bester.

Painting for Keith Laumer's The Other Side Of Time by Jerome Podwil.
Painting by Richard M. Powers for H. G. Wells' The War Of The Worlds.

Painting by Darrell Sweet for Robert A. Heinlein's juvenile novel
Red Planet.

Painting by Ed Valigursky for C. H. Thames' The Iron Virgin, from Amazing Stories, Vol. 30, #3
March 1956.


Here's something a little different - Josh Kirby's original painting / cover artwork for the 1972 DAW paperback of James Blish's Midsummer Century. Many, many thanks to Egrove who owns the original piece for supplying a scan of it!

Thursday, 26 August 2010


Paper Tiger hardback, 1989 reprint. © Tim White.
 "This is the first published collection in book form of the work of Tim White. His paintings depict the landscape of the imagination, and imagination is our vehicle of exploration into the realms of Fantasy and Science Fiction. 
Fantasy art has always provided a popular means of expression and for the contemporary artist the rapid growth of the Science Fiction and Fantasy scene is an ever-widening frame of reference and an unending fund of inspiration. 
Many of the illustrations contained in this collection were pieces of commissioned artwork for publishers' book covers. Compromises obviously have to be made to accommodate, for example, a publisher's art director, but this can be advantageous rather than merely restrictive. 
Tim White combines superlative detail with a largely figurative approach to his interpretation, and creates a totally realistic image of his landscape of the imagination. 
He has produced over one hundred illustrations for book covers, and his other work includes record sleeves, magazine illustrations and private commissions. His work has also appeared in several exhibitions of Science Fiction and Fantasy art."
Illustration used for the short story Green In The Evening in the magazine
Science Fiction Monthly and subsequently featured on the cover of
Terry Greenhough's Wandering Worlds.

Cover painting for John Blackburn's The Scent Of New-Mown Hay.
 "...The most dreadful thing about it is this. In no instance does the victim die ... This thing does not kill. It doesn't need to. It is against its interest to kill. It blends its cells with those of the victim, incorporates itself with it. In the final form you have a creature that retains a basic human structure and yet its material is purely fungoid. You have a thing that can see and move and very possibly retain some thought processes. Thoughts that if they do exist will have one aim and one alone. That of spreading itself to others..."
Painting for Robert A Heinlein's The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress.

Cover for Rogue Golem, by Ernest M. Kenyon.

Cover painting for Fritz Leiber's Gather Darkness.

Cover painting for Daniel F. Galouye's short story collection
Project Barrier.
"In the tracks of its superior, a small robot analyser collects samples of the sparse flora in the thin atmosphere of a desolate asteroid. Even the most diminutive member of the team has fallen victim to an unprecedented outbreak of megalomania and broods secretly on a machiavellian plot to improve its position in a larger robot hierarchy."


Panther SF paperback, 1978. Cover illustration by Peter Gudynas.

When an ancient religious text reveals that nuclear physics existed on medieval Old Earth and that a machine capable of creating a new species of man appeared in Biblical times, the scientists on Earth IVn are completely mystified. It seemed that someone or something had been tampering with history and using humanity for its own secret purpose. 
Only Queghan, the intrepid Myth Technologist could hope to unveil this extraordinary enigma. For queghan possessed the power to cross the twin barriers of time and space, to penetrate the distant past and link it to the mythical future..."


Granada / Mayflower paperback, 1980 reprint. Cover illustration
by Justin Todd.