Oct 25

No, no - I said kick left and twirl right! Ok: from the top!Click for full image

Corwin Comments: In the future, designer space suits are in style, asynchronous space ballet is an Olympic sport, and we’ve all lost our pinkies.
Published 2008

Actually, that cover IS a classical work of art!I would touch it without protective gloves.I've seen worse. Far, far, worse.Interesting, but I would still read it in public.Middlng: Neither awful nor awfully goodWould not like to be seen reading that!Awful... just awful...That belongs in a gold-lame picture frame!Gah... my eyes are burning! Feels so good!Good Show Sir! (Average: 8.09 out of 10)

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20 Responses to “Slow Train to Arcturus”

  1. A.R.Yngve Says:

    Ah, Baen Books… you can always trust them to provide a cover rich with opportunity for laughs.

    1. Finally, a novel that targets the underrepresented color-blind demographic!

    2. Hey, what happened to his left foot?

    3. “Stop that train to Arcturus, I gotta get on it!”

    4. Jolting tension in the tradition of LATE BUS TO BETELGEUSE and HITCH-HIKING TO CYGNUS!

    5. Lady Gaga is going to go bankrupt if she goes on spending money on her gigs like this.

    6. That giant swelling dark shadow in the past? They are escaping Earth because Rush Limbaugh just swallowed it.

  2. SI Says:

    It’s the space teletubies!

  3. Tom Noir Says:

    I hope that he has three fingers because he’s an alien and not because the artist was lazy.

  4. Brian B. Says:

    Of course he is an alien! Even his space suit has poiny ears!

  5. Justin Leego Says:

    Definitely an alien. You can tell from his purple alien eyes and strange space-suit ear flaps.

    Also, he appears to have had some sort of alien technology accident fall upon half of his left foot.

  6. Adam Roberts Says:

    Slow Train to … SPACE DISCO!

  7. Dave Van Domelen. Says:

    Plot in brief: Terran colony slowship made up of a string of beads (each bead being a self-sufficient biome with its own culture, some of which no longer know they’re on a spaceship) passes through an inhabited system. I read the first few chapters on Dahak’s Orbit, it’s told through a combination of memos and historical documents for the human side, and the POV of one of the Arcturans who is sent out to investigate.

  8. A.R.Yngve Says:

    So the title might have been COSMIC SUPER-SCIENCE MEMORANDA, then?

  9. Dave Van Domelen Says:

    ARY: Well, it’d be things like a brief outline of the colony project in general, and then moved onto stuff like, “Here’s this group of anti-tech luddites we’re glad to be rid of, we told ’em to get on the ship if they wanted to keep their religion” followed by the Arcturans meeting the luddites. Or “This group of gun nuts will probably kill themselves off before they reach an inhabitable planet, so here’s the safeguards in place to make sure they don’t blow up any of the other colonist groups” before the Arcturans run afoul of said gun nuts.

  10. Justin Leego Says:

    I’m liking the plot actually. Did you enjoy it, DvD?

  11. Brian B. Says:

    “Pardon me boy is that the Arcturus choo-choo?”

  12. A.R.Yngve Says:

    “My preciousss ‘New York Times Best Selling Author’ ssspiky panel!”

  13. A.R.Yngve Says:

    Michael Jackson never got to realize his final ambition: To be the first astronaut in a purple space-suit.

  14. A.R.Yngve Says:

    In space, no one can hear you prance.

  15. Dave Freer Says:

    Heh, fame at last:-) And it’s not even my worst or least accurate cover. A MANKIND WITCH wins that hands down. The Alien is supposed to be wearing an alien idea of a hi-viz space suit (which um, I didn’t see quite as a purple michael Jackson outfit), is supposed to have three fingers and a centrally place thumb. He’s supposed to be yellow-skinned. I am pretty sure he didn’t have pointy ears. Oh the memo bits are chapter-headers – 4-6 lines max, and the story per se is yes, about the Aliens dealing with a succession of space habitats with ‘misfits’ ranging from gun-nut survivalists to anti-tech religious pacifists, each due to be dropped off at a star system (humanity no longer colonises planets. It colonises space – star systems with space habitats). The funniest comment is AR Yngve’s Rush Limbaugh one. Next time maybe heesh should look up Eric Flint’s bio before commiting to print (Eric… is not exactly right wing. LOL). Nothing like a few preconcieved notions to prejudge a book by its cover, eh? I think the first few chapters are available for free on the Baen site. Maybe you should read them and judge on that?

  16. SI Says:

    WHAT! You mean… actually read a book?

    Welcome to the Good Show Sir craziness. Where sarcasm rules all 馃榾

    On second glance it does look like he’s playing with a “New York times, best-selling author” yo-yo!

  17. Dave Freer Says:

    All the best Aliens have those Yo-yos. They sell them at the Walmart on far, far side of the moon ;-). I really don’t mind having having the mickey taken out of the illustration. Goes with the turf. Um, I don’t love it much myself, though it must have been a royal cow to be asked illustrate.

    Your actual reading of course, is like not excercising one’s ignorance when it needs walkies. So unfashionable ;-).

  18. arch9enius Says:

    Start wearing purple wearing purple
    Start wearing purple for me no ow
    All your sanity and your wits will soon all vanish
    I promise
    Its just a
    Matter of

  19. Stevie T Says:

    I read this book because it appeared here. It was a pretty good read, actually. And yes, my copy came with this cover. (I showed it to a family member whose comment was “At least it isn’t a naked woman with a laser gun.” Touche)

    Mr. Freer has already commented on the accuracy, or lack thereof, of the foreground alien. What really got to me though, was that a) this scene happens NOWHERE in the book, and, b) The authors were pretty thorough in their description of Howard, who I’m pretty sure is supposed to be the guy in the green spacesuit, however, he looks NOTHING like Howard. Or anybody else.

  20. anon Says:

    I wonder who the puppeteer is.

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