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Book Cover Smackdown! PIRATE CINEMA vs. THE ‘GEISTERS vs. LIFE ON THE PRESERVATION

Another round of book cover smackdownery today…this time with some colorful renditions of cool-sounding books

Sound off in the comments about which cover you like the best and why…

Pirate Cinema by Cory Doctorow (Titan Books)

When Trent McCauley’s obsession for making movies by reassembling footage from popular films causes his home’s internet to be cut off, it nearly destroys his family. Shamed, Trent runs away to London. A new bill threatens to criminalize even harmless internet creativity. Things look bad, but the powers-that-be haven’t entirely reckoned with the power of a gripping movie to change people’s minds…

The ‘Geisters by David Nickle (ChiZine)

When Ann LeSage was a little girl, she had an invisible friend – a poltergeist, that spoke to her with flying knives and howling winds. She called it the Insect. And with a little professional help, she contained it. And the nightmare was over, at least for a time. But the nightmare never truly ended. As Ann grew from girl into young woman, the Insect grew with her. It became more than terrifying. It became a thing of murder. Now, as she embarks on a new life married to Michael Voors, a successful young lawyer, Ann believes that she finally has the Insect under control. But there are others vying to take that control away from her. They may not know exactly what they’re dealing with, but they know they want it. They are the ‘Geisters. And in pursuing their own perverse dream, they risk spawning the most terrible nightmare of all.

Life on the Preservation by Jack Skillingstead (UK Edition, Solaris)

Inside the Seattle Preservation Dome it’s always the Fifth of October, the city caught in an endless time loop. “Reformed” graffiti artist Ian Palmer is the only one who knows the truth, and he is desperate to wake up the rest of the city before the alien Curator of this human museum erases Ian’s identity forever. Discover the reality bending SF of this new author in this astonishing story.
Inside the Seattle Preservation Dome it’s always the Fifth of October, the city caught in an endless time loop. “Reformed” graffiti artist Ian Palmer is the only one who knows the truth, and he is desperate to wake up the rest of the city before the alien Curator of this human museum erases Ian’s identity forever. Outside the Dome the world lies in apocalyptic ruin. Small town teenager Kylie is one of the few survivors to escape both the initial shock wave and the effects of the poison rains that follow. Now she must make her way across the blasted lands pursued by a mad priest and menaced by skin-and-bone things that might once have been human. Her destination is the Preservation, and her mission is to destroy it. But once inside, she meets Ian, and together they discover that Preservation reality is even stranger than it already appears.

About John DeNardo (13013 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

7 Comments on Book Cover Smackdown! PIRATE CINEMA vs. THE ‘GEISTERS vs. LIFE ON THE PRESERVATION

  1. Pirate Cinema, hands down.

    The ‘Geisters has an interesting illustration, but Pirate Cinema catches your eye: compelling concept and excellent composition. And Life on the Preservation… looks to me like a marketing book or something.

  2. Love all three. The ‘geisters has the coolest art – best bookcover as collectable artifact… but Pirate Cinema is perfect for thumbnails and online stores. All in all – I’d prefer to own the ‘geisters but for long term online sales (ie: if it was a cover of my book), Cory’s cover rocks.

  3. I like Pirate Cinema very much. It has that retro-poster look that is all the rage right now and the color choices work great. The cover would sell me that book.

  4. Much as I like Cory’s cover, The ‘Geisters looks the coolest and most arresting. It’d be the one I picked up first, because I’d want to know–WTF is that thing on the cover? Granted, I am biased, but there you go.

  5. I actually like all three covers for very different reasons, which seems appropriate since from a marketing perspective these covers are intended to speak, and appeal, to vastly different audiences (also worth noting that the Titan Books cover for Pirate Cinema is more appropriate to its intended audience than the Tor cover – which I still quite like, but this one is much better marketing). Based on personal preference, I agree with Dale that The Geisters has the best art, but then Erik Mohr’s work is always spectacular, so I’m a little biased 🙂

  6. Klaudia B // April 22, 2013 at 4:55 pm //

    The ‘Geisters has the best book cover, not only because I like simple cover designs and blue things tend to draw my eye more, but because the image is really interesting. I like the fact you have to look at the cover longer before figuring it out.

    I find Pirate Cinema too crowded at the bottom, and it bothers me that you have to hunt for the title of the book (not being familiar with the author), which is already competing in that small space. The image is appealing though.

    Even though Life on the Preservation is blue and relatively simple, the image isn’t very engaging and there’s nothing special about it that would make me pick it up.

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