Yesterday’s post was an example of intentionally bad cover art for a book.
Today I figured I would take a moment to show you a few examples of published book covers that are potentially worse from a design standpoint than the juggernaut that was “Dr. Vladimir’s Space Virus.”
All of the images that follow were taken at the University of Washington Book Store.
It should be noted that most of these covers were far from the worst I’ve seen.
I blame myself for this, as Barnes & Noble seems to stock a larger quantity of rubbish books with shitty covers.
Good job UW, way to keep the crappy book cover population to a minimum.
Anyway, let’s begin our journey through the world of shitty cover art with the book that prompted me to start this whole day of adventure in the first place:
Werewolf Smackdown by Mario Acevedo.
The moment I saw this on the shelf, I found myself stupefied, gawking in horror at the masterpiece of ass-itude that lay before me.
Now, first thing’s first, Werewolf Smackdown is a truly awful title.
In my opinion, the most frustrating part of this cover isn’t the horrendous graphic of the werewolf character, but rather the typography of the title.
The “Down” part of the word “Smackdown” is on a slightly lower plane than the “Smack” resulting in a rather confusing appearance.
I guess one could theorize that this was done intentionally as a visual metaphor to put emphasis on the fact that werewolves are in fact smacked down in this book, but I seriously doubt most would come to that conclusion on first glance.
Hell, it took me like 20 minutes to even come up with that half-assed explanation.
Other than my confusion over what’s the title and who’s the author (thank you very much, shitty typography), this is a pretty crazy-awesome/retardly-awesome/shitty cover that I honestly don’t have problem with.
That doesn’t make anything more than a shitty cover though.
Just ask any of my friends, I have a tendency to find reasons to like truly awful things.
Like the previous cover, this one isn’t overtly bad, it’s just really fucking stupid.
I mean come on, it’s a fuckin’ dragon holding a viking with it’s tail.
On paper that sounds pretty cool, but I would’ve preferred to see a less static representation of this most epic of encounters, you know, something a little more action oriented or dynamic.
Conceptually speaking, this is like looking at a heavy metal album cover.
You aren’t allowed to ask “why,” you just sort of accept it in all it’s insanity and excess and get on with your life.
Pyramid Power loses points for it’s shitty title, however, like the previous cover; the cover isn’t all that bad, just uninspired.
Finally, I’d like to take a minute to look over a couple of covers from an author that seems to have a knack for generating crappy novels deserving of crappy covers, Mr. John Ringo.
First up is The Road to Damascus:
Oh yeah, he also appears to be facing down a tank.
Based on the color palette and (shitty) fonts, my first instinct upon viewing this cover was to compare it to one of those choose-your-own-adventure novels.
Though silly in nature, The Road to Damascus, once again, doesn’t have all that bad a cover.
The image is provocative, with some definite time and effort put into the illustration, with some very straightforward and easily distinguished focal points to the layout.
The fonts are pretty boring, but not clip art bad.
I will say this though, the cover seems a little too busy in places, particularly at the top, where the tag line is inappropriately large given it’s close proximity to the author’s name/names.
Our last cover is another John Ringo book, called Gust Front; and this time it actually is shitty, not just bad like most of the others.
I apologize about my leniency towards these shitty book covers.
Many of them probably deserve harsher words than I’ve given them, but I guess it’s just not in my nature to gripe about and be unnecessarily or overly critical of things, no matter how shitty they may be.
Oh well, here’s Gust Front:
Pretty much everything bad that can be said about cover art can be applied to Gust Front.
The title is ass.
The fonts are ridiculously over-the-top, oversized, and horrendously colored.
Man, that was a good show…
Hang on, now that I think of it, the title font seems to bear a certain resemblance to the Starship Troopers one, at least in terms of it’s alignment.
I see, so we’re to buy this no doubt shitty novel based on the associations it brings on in our minds in relation to Starship Troopers?
Clever girl Mr. Ringo… Clever girl indeed…
I feel it is worth noting that John Ringo’s section at the UW bookstore was pretty much a shelf unto itself.
That’s a lot of shit novels.
Huh, guess I really can be an asshole when I put my mind to it.
Anyway, this has been a truly half-assed post.
Things will pick up a little bit more tomorrow, promise.
Praise be to Space Bobcat.