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Book Cover Smackdown! MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM V7 (Tomino) vs. FRANKENSTEIN (Shelley) vs. HOLLOW PIKE (Dawson)

It’s time another Book Cover Smackdown! Your mission (should you choose to accept it): Play armchair art critic!

Tell us:

  • Which of these covers most grabs your attention?
  • What works and what doesn’t work with these covers?
  • Do any of them make you want to learn more about and/or read the book?

Mobile Suit Gundam: THE ORIGIN, Volume 7: Battle of Loum by Yoshiyuki Tomino, Retold by Yoshikazu Yasuhiko
(Vertical | September 30, 2014 | Cover illustration artist: unknown)

The biggest name in Japanese science-fiction, Gundam, returns with one of its creators retelling its origins through an epic graphic novel series 35 years after the series debuted.

In a civil war, half of humanity has been wiped out, and Zeon’s army of Zaku mobile suits have been the decisive weapon. With the Federation’s first Gundam out of action, civilian Amuro Ray miraculously stumbles on a second unit. Now, in control of a machine with unparalleled destructive power, will Amuro’s actions save the colony’s survivors or destroy them?

Story Locale: Space

Series Overview: Caught in the crossfire of a space civil war, teenager Amuro Ray accidentally finds a new mobile weapon-the RX-78 Gundam. To protect himself and his friends he climbs into the cockpit and is immediately thrust into the frontlines defending those he loves from a silent enemy.

Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
(Alma Books; annotated edition edition | September 1, 2014 | Cover illustration artist: unknown)

Extensively annotated, with pictures and a section on Shelley’s life and works

Since it was first published in 1818, Mary Shelley’s seminal novel has generated countless print, stage, and screen adaptations, but none has ever matched the power and philosophical resonance of the original. Composed as part of a challenge with Byron and Shelley to conjure up the most terrifying ghost story, Frankenstein narrates the chilling tale of a being created by a bright young scientist and the catastrophic consequences that ensue. Considered by many to be the first science-fiction novel, the tragic tale of Victor Frankenstein and the tortured creation he rejects is a classic fable about the pursuit of knowledge, the nature of beauty, and the monstrosity inherent to man.

Hollow Pike by James Dawson
(Orion Children’s Books | September 1, 2014 | Cover illustration artist: unknown)

A gripping thriller with a dash of romance and the paranormal, set in Hollow Pike—a small town with a big history of witchcraft

She thought she’d be safe in the country, but you can’t escape your own nightmares, and Lis London dreams repeatedly that someone is trying to kill her. Lis thinks she’s being paranoid—after all who would want to murder her? She doesn’t believe in the local legends of witchcraft. She doesn’t believe that anything bad will really happen to her. You never do, do you? Not until you’re alone in the woods, after dark—and a twig snaps. Hollow Pike: where witchcraft never sleeps.

About John DeNardo (13012 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

4 Comments on Book Cover Smackdown! MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM V7 (Tomino) vs. FRANKENSTEIN (Shelley) vs. HOLLOW PIKE (Dawson)

  1. Steve Oerkfitz // June 21, 2014 at 5:05 am //

    Don’t like any of them very much. Hollow Pike is the least offensive. Has to be the worst ever cover for Frankenstein.

  2. David Greybeard // June 21, 2014 at 7:57 am //

    What an unappealing lot.

  3. I like the clean art and twitch of humor in Mobile Suit Gundam: THE ORIGIN, Volume 7: Battle of Loum, so that one gets my vote.

  4. Patrick // June 21, 2014 at 6:09 pm //

    I like the cover for Frankenstein most. Too bad the artist isn’t known in order to give credit. The typography and that disembodied mechanical eye in the middle seems to give the cover a slight sense of foreboding. Plus, I’m a fan of the late graphic designer Saul Bass – this reminds me a little of his work. As, for the other two covers – they don’t appeal to me very much.

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