Boooo! Baen.

I just can't stop myself from picking on Baen. Seriously, what kind of leverage does the Baen house artist have that keeps him or her in a job? Naked pictures of the editorial staff in compromising positions? Tenure? Remind me, if I'm ever published, to put a BIG rider in the contract that I get to approve the art. Because surely these authors cringed when they first saw these.

Here we have aerobicizing angels*:

And here are some naked blue women dancing around a planet shaped like a woman's head. Nice makeup there.

In case you're wondering, Spider Robinson is one of my favorite Sci-Fi authors. His Callahan series is brilliant and funny and sexy and alcoholic...I mean, the two related locales are a bar and a whorehouse, what could be better?! But I would never, ever, ever, ever, in a million years, ever read this book if I just had to cover to go on.

And what is with the Baen ball? What is that, a squid? How do you pronounce Baen, anyway? These things keep me up at night.

*Thanks to diligent page Jeremy for showing me this cover. I am now scarred for life.




Snow said...

Aerobicizing angels is right. That one's scary, in a toned, tightened, airbrushed, and inflated kind of way.

Unknown said...

Some of the Baen covers really are truly atrocious. The one that springs to mind for me is the cover of Chrome Circle by Mercedes Lackey, with a psychedelic pink Mustang.

k4f said...

I just can't hate these covers. That's pretty much what the main character of Heinlein's title story looks like... and I like naked women of almost any color, myself.

Jim Baen answered the name question when he was editor of Galaxy; it may please you to know it's pronounced "bane". :)

Anonymous said...

Got to agree with K-Face above. The moon girl with the wings had a big chest due to the atmosphere in the moon dome. It's in the book. The disco stylings are anachornistic, but true to the spirit.

Star Dancers likewise is about dancing naked in orbit. Don't remember anything about the dancers figure - but it is Spider, what would you guess?

Rimas Kurtinaitis said...

I know this violates the spirit of judging the book by its cover, but Menace from Earth contains some of Heinlein's best work.

Anonymous said...

Those bad Baen covers go waaay back. My dad had a couple of books published under Baen in the mid-80s and the second book has the most godawful cover ever. It's almost amusing, it's so bad!

Unknown said...

No... unfortunately, you can bet that Heinlein LOVED this cover. A weirder, more ambivalent attitude toward women you won't find outside of Updike.

Hard not to love those books though.

Sigivald said...

Terrible art is an ancient science fiction tradition. I think it's intentional.

As are the boobies.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of Baen books, have you seen some of the covers in Mercedes Lackey's Bardic Voices or whatever. Scary, some of them. Especially 'Cast of Corbies'. And I think the Baen logo is a dragon with a tail behind it.