Welcome to Shelf Candy Saturday!!
This weekly feature
showcases beautiful book covers,
and provides information,
if available, on their very talented creators!
For more information
about Shelf Candy Saturday,
just click HERE.
Here's my choice for this week!
The Einstein Intersection
Nebula Award, 1967
Trade Paperback, 149 pages
Wesleyan University Press
July 15, 1998
(First published by Ace Books, 1967)
Why do I love this cover?
The image on this cover is by the prolific 19th-century English illustrator, Aubrey Beardsley, who specialized in creating gorgeous black ink drawings. Although I do love his style, which contributed to the Art Nouveau movement, I dislike the subject matter of many of his drawings, which feature grotesque, decadent, and erotic images. Because of this, he's a favorite of mine strictly in terms of his style. His flowing, elegant lines and intricately detailed compositions are absolutely gorgeous! The image above is one of his less objectionable creations, and I love it!
Whoever designed this cover, using an astronomer's photograph of a distant galaxy as background, had a stroke of genius! This oddly beautiful combination is a stunning one, and I want to acquire this edition of the novel. The presence of the galaxy makes it obvious that this is indeed a science fiction novel. It's unfortunate that the designer is not credited; I checked out this book through the Amazon online reader, and couldn't find any designer's name mentioned anywhere.
The protagonist of this novel is an alien trying to adjust to life on a future Earth, one from which the human race has long vanished, leaving behind all kinds of artifacts. The Beardsley drawing certainly captures the 'oddness' of the alien, I think, although I have yet to read the book.
The font used for the title and author's name is graceful enough, and doesn't distract the eye from the Beardsley drawing, but complements it.
This is an earlier version of the cover, also published in the US, on June 30, 1998. I don't think this one is as effective as the one above. It looks more like a monograph on Beardsley's work than a science fiction novel. The font used is much too common and ordinary. Besides, that orange is just too garish! Beardsley's drawing, of course, is just as beautiful, but I'm left wondering just what it has to do with a science fiction novel.
Here's another lovely, also not objectionable, sample of Beardsley's work:
"The Peacock Skirt"
Illustration from Salome,
by Oscar Wilde
(from the 1894 English edition)
As you can see, Beardsley was a master of flowing line technique and intricate composition. This is an incredibly beautiful drawing!
Aubrey Beardsley Online
What do you think of my choice?
Leave me a comment
and let me know!