Thoughtful Thursday: Rename This Horrible Cover, Psycho Floating Baby Head edition

fantasy and science fiction book reviews

Yeah, it made me jump too, the first time I saw this. My husband sent this to me in response to an email I had sent to him proclaiming this book to have the worst cover of any book I had ever seen. I opened the email and literally flinched.

The title of the book, Twilight of Briareus, doesn’t seem nearly evocative enough for artwork this…stunning. What is going on?  Why is a giant disembodied baby head floating through space?  Is this a sequel to 2001: A Space Odyssey crossed with The Blair Witch Project? The backcover blurb is terse and nondescriptive:

Earth is ravaged by tornadoes, and in their aftermath everyone becomes sterile. Certain people acquire psychic powers and can experience “trips” in each other’s company, during which their consciousness appears to dislocate itself in time and space.

Okay, so post-apocalyptic psychic psycho floating baby head. That doesn’t help.

So dear readers, I turn to you for assistance.  Can you come up with a title for this…compelling…piece of artwork?

The best suggestion will win a book of their choice off of our stacks. They all have better cover art.  I promise. (Except for the ARCs which have no cover art. (But that would still be an improvement.))

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RUTH ARNELL (on FanLit's staff January 2009 — August 2013) earned a Ph.D. in political science and is a college professor in Idaho. From a young age she has maxed out her library card the way some people do credit cards. Ruth started reading fantasy with A Wrinkle in Time and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe — books that still occupy an honored spot on her bookshelf today. Ruth and her husband have a young son, but their house is actually presided over by a flame-point Siamese who answers, sometimes, to the name of Griffon.

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  1. At first I thought the blurb said “ravaged by tomatoes,” so maybe that’s why I have food on the brain. Here goes:

    “New! Gerber Strained Galaxies”

  2. All these title suggestions sound more like jokey self-help books, but here goes.

    Psychics — Getting Ahead in the Galaxy

    Psychics –Quitting While You’re Ahead

    Getting Ahead on Your Psychic Trip

    Dislocations in Time and Space, A Heads Up for Psychics

    Heads, not Tails — Getting the Psychic Trip You Want

    How the Galaxy Came to a Head, With Your Psychic Help

  3. That is really freaky, Ruth!!!

  4. I don’t have a new title suggestion. My only reaction was: “AAAAAGH GET IT AWAY FROM ME GET IT AWAY FROM ME”.

  5. Truly horrifying. Let’s see if any of my suggested titles can be just as horrifying.

    * Galactus: Devourer of Worlds – The Early Years
    * The Baby of Oz
    * Plan 10 from Outer Space
    * Gynoastrology!

  6. The Stepford Babies in Outer Space

  7. Ewww this is hideous! The first title that came to mind was:

    Babies of the Galaxy: Coming out head first

  8. The Talking Heads: Before They Were Rockstars.

  9. These are hilarious ideas!
    Personally, I can’t wait until this post gets buried. I get freaked out every time my browser opens (this is my homepage).

    There’s one review of The Twilight of Briareus on Amazon (click cover to go there). The reviewer gives it 5 stars and notes that Richard Cowper “…soars beyond the immediate areas of species assumptions…”

  10. Brendan /

    And I thought the other cover was bad.

    Good Show Sir – The Twilight of Briareus

  11. Here you go…

    El Nino Conquers the Galaxy.

    I”ve seen some bad covers in my time, but that one really takes the cake!

  12. Wait, “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane: The Final Chapter”

  13. I like the El NIno one and thanks Brendan for the link. The alternate cover was bad and then there was the other covers featured there. Some really atrocious artwork.

  14. And the winner is Digital Dame, for “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane: The Final Chapter!” Please contact us with your choice from the stacks and we’ll get it in the mail to you.


  15. LOL Wow, thanks! I’ll send my info. I almost forgot to check back :)

  16. I’m sorry, I’m being a total dork, I don’t see a ‘contact’ button…? I was going to request Max Frei’s “The Stranger.”

  17. N/M, I found it. How embarrassing ;)


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