Oct 11

Freeze! I've chosen the best camouflage money can buy. He'll never see us!Click for full image

Jose Comments: Everything about this cover is perfect (in a very wrong way); a spangly shirt, a sentient cactus and a lizard with its ‘hands’ on its hips.
Published 1984

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: 8.66 out of 10)

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25 Responses to “Lava”

  1. Phil Says:

    The lizard should get his own series. Not sure about the sentient cactus, though. Getting a needle in the eye seems to be an ocupational hazard for him/it/her.

    As for our human hero: why the long face?

  2. A.R.Yngve Says:

    He’s got a long face ‘cos that’s Martin Short, in the scene with the singing cactus from the film THREE AMIGOS.

  3. SI Says:

    Cactus with crab legs. Evolution… you crazy bastard!

    That is an adventure shirt if I have ever seen one! Should be in the shop right next to the adventure torch, providing you with a solid metre of light!

  4. THX 1138 Says:

    “WAIT! Just look at yourselves! Ray Harryhausen’s obviously gone nuts!”

  5. Don Hilliard Says:

    Surprisingly, “The Kids from Fame Visit Jurassic Park” was not a successful Movie of the Week…

  6. J. Prevost Says:

    Of course, it’s all the more delicious because all of these elements (including the spangly shirt) is relevant to the story, and depicted faithfully. (As a result, I’m not really sure you can call this one of the worst book covers out there.)

  7. J. Prevost Says:

    P.S. The artist is Janet Aulisio (

  8. Yoss Says:

    Is that cactus genitalia I see?

  9. Ian Says:

    “Lizzy leave Spike alone”!

  10. fred Says:

    “My God, his shirt, it’s full of Necco wafers!”

  11. David Cowie Says:

    @ J.Provost (#6) The purpose of a book cover is not to faithfully depict the contents (although it’s nice if this happens), but to persuade people to buy the book. If people see the front and think “Oh God that’s ugly”, they probably won’t investigate any further. And a sale is lost.

  12. Jane Says:

    And don’t overlook the horrible pun, also a staple of 80s science fiction book covers.

  13. A.R.Yngve Says:

    I wish someone would inform SF/ publishers:
    “Hey, guys! The purpose of a book cover is to persuade people to buy the book.”
    The replies:
    “Well, I never!”
    “Perish the thought!”

  14. Jerk of all Trades Says:

    I don’t know, David. I look at that, and the first thing that pops into my head is OH MY GOD, THAT’S SO AWESOME, and I can’t in good faith claim that it’s meant sarcastically.

  15. Tom Noir Says:

    @ARYngve – no no no. That’s not it at all! The purpose of a book cover is CLEARLY to shame and humiliate the reader, as the many many examples on this site testify!

  16. Anti-Sceptic Says:

    Godzilla vs The Giant Cactus!

    Who will win! Which one of these combatants will come out on top!
    You’ll just have to read it to find out….

  17. anon Says:

    Hot like lava!
    Disco fever!

  18. Tom Noir Says:

    Oh god, not the dream with the Needle Nipples and the Disapproving Lizard again!!!

  19. fearofmusic Says:

    Soap! Green, horribly gritty soap!

    Sorry, having a flashback to my childhood.

  20. rev Says:

    Does John Virgo know this guy stole his shirt?

  21. Anna T. Says:

    That’s the cactus’ eye? Then why does it look like a human breast? And why does the cactus have one anyway?

  22. Tat Wood Says:

    He’s doing the cardboard box dance to ‘Born Slippy’

    Shouting lava lava lava lava

  23. fred Says:

    This explanation is a good as any for this cover.

  24. Yoss Says:

    You’d think a guy with a shirt like that could do a more enthusiastic “jazz hands.”

  25. Bruce A Munro Says:

    It’s tough being the peacemaker of the family.

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