Time to take out the trash

It's been a few months since my last lampooning of the all-too-easily-skewered Harlequin line. Tonight at our Local Grocery Chain Maughta and I came across a few books which once again exemplify Harlequin's penchant for expository titles and swarthy Mediterranean Mammons.

Let's take a look at the latest in a long line of barrel-bottom bodice-busting bookery, shall we?

All I have to say about this bit of schlock is that the title sounds like it was produced by a Romance Novel Random Title Generator™ that's fed words like "billionaire," "bachelor," "bride," and so forth. I also have to admit that at first I thought the giant gemstone at the cover's center was a glinting pair of stainless steel handcuffs.

Oh, and a NOTE to would-be-poets: "billionaire heir" doesn't "rhyme," it doesn't "scan," it doesn't witness any clever poetic device. It just sounds uninspired and stupid.

Wait, did I just say that last title sounded stupid? I spoke too soon. We're back at the corner of 1st and Main in Expository Title Town. Nice brocading on that fainting couch. She's going to have a helluva backache in the morning.

And here come the Greeks! The cover designers didn't want to leave anything to chance: "In the Greek tycoon's bed," "The Giannakis bride," "At the mercy of a ruthless Mediterranean billionaire..." He's Ukrainian, isn't he?

Exactly how many Greek billionaires are there? Of course, the Italians are not to be outdone:

For my money, this last one's the topper. The title defies every naming convention for throw-away fiction ever devised. It doesn't sing, it doesn't zing, there's not even the merest attempt at drama. It reads more like a newspaper headline ("Mayor: Town in Crisis") or the title of an academic text ("Nuts: a comprehensive history of almonds in the United Kingdom") than the title a romance novel. However, 3 of the title's 6 words ("virgin," "Italian," and "wedded") are stock fodder for the RNRTG™, so I guess I could cut it some slack.

Until next time, keep sending us your covers, and your favorite pulp titles!


Warm Fuzzies

From the aptly named Buzzy comes Little Fuzzy.

Take that, freakin' Ewoks! I hope these things live underground 'cause otherwise those eyes are extremely ridiculous. Oh, who am I fooling, those eyes are completely ridiculous any which way you slice it. If the Fuzzies get wet do they turn into gremlins?

Also freaking out children everywhere is this book from reader Melanie's library's easy reader collection:

Melanie says, "Now, I know this girl is blind, but she MUST be aware of where Annie Sullivan's hands are. I feel dirty just for having looked at it." Better hold onto that belt, Helen, or that dress is going to come flying off and this book will move from "easy reader" to the "adult" section!



Avast, ye scallywags, ye are about t' be boarded. MOTHERboarded, that is!

Thank you, lovely JH, whose Law Library is, for some inexplicable reason, weeding this gem. Apparently the original book is in light blue with red kerchief and titles, but alas we only have it in black and white.

In other pirate news, did you know that the decline of pirates directly relates to global warming?


John Ringo - Who Knew?

"Few names in the lore of western gunmen are as recognizable. Few lives of the most notorious are as little known. Romanticized and made legendary, John Ringo fought and killed for what he believed was right. ... In this charnel house Ringo gained a reputation as a dangerous gunfighter and man killer. He was proclaimed throughout the state as a daring leader, a desperate man, and a champion of the feud. ... In the end, Ringo died mysteriously in the Arizona desert, his death welcomed by some, mourned by others, wrongly claimed by a few."

From the synopsis of John Ringo, King of the Cowboys by David Johnson.

How often do we get to snark about something from a university press?  Is JaBbiC favorite John Ringo named after the Cowboy King?   Does he give mustache rides?

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain...


So Maughta's got me listed as a co-author on her blog, and I've got a couple of other blogs on Blogspot, including my decidedly-less-well-read-than-Judge-a-Book-by-its-Cover blog about math pedagogy, Change of Basis. It seems that when I went to post on the latter this morning, I accidentally posted on the former. (No, it was not a pathetic attempt to cash in on Maughta's internet popularity, which is inarguably exponentially greater than my own...not that I'm bitter about it...or anything...I mean, what do I care? I'm...happy...about her success...I'm...just fine...with it...really...so what if no wants to read about what I have to say? It doesn't matter...not at all...)

My bad.

Sorry about that, folks.

We now resume our bad cover art snarkitude, already in progress...

...shoulda seen the size of the package on that one! Dog will hunt!

In other news, faithful reader Laura sends us evidence that crappy cover art is not confined to a single linguistic tradition. Behold, ¡AtenciĆ³n...platillos volantes!:

Ay, chihuahua. One might think that not wearing one's helmet vitiates the effectiveness of the spacesuit/oxygen tanks one is wearing. Apparently one would be wrong. One might also think that one ought not wear angular undergarments whose pointy bits threaten to break through the fabric of one's spacesuit, not to mention the fabric of space-time. On this point, too, one would be in error.

What is the luchador del espacio ("space warrior") doing to the alien invader, power washing it a with a high-luster waxing compound?

Back on planet Earth (I think), Nomad reader sends us this provocatively-titled tome:

Hey, whatever folks wanna do in the privacy of their own homes is fine by me. What I find funniest about the cover (title aside) is the helicopter-shot we've got of grandma waving goodbye as we sail off into the clouds...or into the ceiling fan, anyway. I'm sure the artist's intent was to get a shot of Ms. Burns standing amidst an assortment of her handiwork, but the effect is awkward and disorienting. Her queen-like wave just makes it worse.

Sorry again for the unintentional cross-bloggification. Thanks go out to our ever-eager cover submitters, and our devoted fans. Keep it comin'! You may now recommence commenting.