Mar 24

Afros need protected in deep space. Skin? Ah who cares!?!Click for full image

Miggity’s Art Direction: Shirtless black dude in tighty whities with a space helmet and a pneumatic fishing spear gun, flanked by two white Amazonian women in see through tops giving the whole thing a weird sex vibe, with a spacecraft carrier, space figthers, four planets and sweet moon base in the foreground… PERFECT!
Published 1981

Many thanks to Miggity!

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: 8.79 out of 10)

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32 Responses to “The Janus Syndrome”

  1. Ian Sales Says:

    I like that one. Classy. Very 1970s.

  2. A.R.Yngve Says:

    That’s an AWESOME book cover!
    If publishers are really serious about selling SF books, this ought to be the industry standard.

    The only thing I’d want to change is remove the unnecessary “By” before the author’s name.

  3. SI Says:

    I agree. This is a great cover! It’s so busy and just think of the nods of respect you’d get for reading this on the bus!

    I love that the space ship kinda looks a bit like a hand vacuum.

  4. THX 1138 Says:

    “Let’s see: gun, helmet, underpants…. have I forgotten anything? Nope, don’t think so, to space we go!”

  5. Rich Says:

    That is just awesome. I would have bought this in a second back in the 70s.

    WooHoo free ebook download, with cover. here

  6. Joel Says:

    “It’s so busy and just think of the nods of respect you’d get for reading this on the bus!”


    Best comment ever.

  7. Adam Roberts Says:

    A.R.Y.: “That’s an AWESOME book cover!


    The only thing I’d want to change is remove the unnecessary “By” before the author’s name

    I assume it’s a typo for ‘Bi’. When a cover sports such irresistible males and females, who wouldn’t swing both ways?

  8. NGpm Says:

    Argh! Underpants is not the word for what he’s sportin’, the cutouts make me want to *not* wonder what they uncover.

    I need to give this guy a sci-fi name. I was thinking about Kevin … I’ll just spell it Kevven. That’s a name that would do the famous Dutch author Charles Dikkens (author of Barnaby Rudge) proud.

  9. Tom Noir Says:

    Is anyone else seriously digging that space ship? Because I am.

  10. Adam Roberts Says:

    Tom: makes me think of Lords Cricket ground. Just a little.

  11. Miggity Says:

    I saw this amazing cover out of the corner of my eye while walking past a “3 for $1.00” book bin in front of a used book store. I did I double take as I couldn’t believe how awesome it was. I ran in and bought it immediately!

  12. Dalton H. Says:

    If only this is what 007’s Moonraker was like.

  13. Tom Noir Says:

    Here it is, 2011, and we still don’t have underwear with streamlined air holes.

  14. Don Hilliard Says:

    @Tom: Speak for yoursel…er, never mind.

  15. Steven E. MCDonald Says:

    Thanks for the Sunday morning chuckles — the comments are amusing. While I remember my heart sinking somewhat when I got the first cover proof, I remember a bookseller I showed it to saying, with great sincerity, “I can sell every copy of this they’ll send me, no kidding.” I’ve always thought of this cover as being a pitch for SHAFT IN SPACE….

  16. Phil Says:

    It’s terrific when one of the authors of these books drops by, especially when they’re such good sports about the way their work has been packaged.

  17. Alessandra Kelley Says:

    It’s like a John D. MacDonald cover that’s gone through a klein bottle.

    And yes, it is nice when an author shows up. I really feel for them when they get covers like these.

  18. SilvaNoir Says:

    The Love Boat, taking you places exciting and new

  19. B. Chiclitz Says:

    Speaking of packages, hers is clearly *bigger* than his. She’s definitely the alpha male. He’s just trying to compensate with those cutouts and all.

  20. Tom Noir Says:

    “You gotta help me doc! My Janus hurts all the time!”

    “Well it sounds like you have a case of the Janus Syndrome.”

  21. B. Chiclitz Says:

    TODAY ONLY: meet Kevven (or is that “Kewen”) Tomari!
    Remember, meet Tomari today!!
    At the Outrageous Book Cover Book Store and Lingerie Emporium, Deck 4, Space Ship 1205.

    I guess that’s what happens when you come down with Janus Syndrome. You can’t tell if it’s today or Tomari (or yesterday, for that matter).

  22. anon Says:

    I bet that guy (link) is still diggin’ on James Brown.

  23. GSS noob Says:

    I would like to commend the author for not only showing up here, but for making this available as a free download. I am absolutely going to read this.

  24. fred Says:

    I want Kevven in Guardians of the Galaxy 3.

  25. Tat Wood Says:

    If that’s Kevin, I can only imagine what the illustrator did with Roland Rat.

  26. Bibliomancer Says:

    I just noticed we had an AUTHOR IN THE COMMENTS. Thank you sir for joining us and being such a good sport.

    As to the book, a reviewer describes it as “Shaft becomes a Jedi”!

  27. Tat Wood Says:

    ‘Shaft becomes a Jedi’? They tried that in the prequels.

  28. GSS ex-noob Says:

    This is, by God, a sci-fi adventure thriller.

    8.92 seems a little harsh, frankly. No egregious anatomy mistakes or font problems. In 1981, I absolutely would have read this in public. I might today.

    I would also have watched “Shaft in Space”.

  29. Dead Stuff With Big Teeth Says:

    Question: is it enlightened for us to make opportunities for our brothers and sisters of African or Asian or Aboriginal origin–groups traditionally under-represented–on the worst sci-fi/fantasy covers of all time?

  30. JuanPaul Says:

    I’ve never understood the hand-forward, palm-down, fingers-spread pose. Does anyone use this gesture in everyday life? If danger is near, doesn’t it make more sense to have both hands on the laser rifle?

  31. Tonto Says:

    @DSWBT—what you mean “us,” white man?

  32. GSS ex-noob Says:

    DSWBT: I think so. True equality comes when we can all look dumb on sci-fi books equally. No longer will these opportunities be strictly for the SWM.

    The black man on this cover isn’t wearing any stereotypical or racist black/African garb. He’s clearly the hero, not the sidekick or the rescuee.

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