Universal Appeal: Beautiful New & Vintage Sci-Fi Book Covers

Science fiction. It fills countless library shelves, holds its own in Hollywood and sometimes even feels like we’re living it. (Researchers found what? They discovered what in the ocean? Elon Musk wants to build a what?) It can be fun and scary, even downright alluring. Even so, in the world of art and design, sci-fi book covers aren’t always viewed as the most objectively beautiful works of art. Which is to say, you might look at a cover and recognize that it looks the way it does for good reasons—and that perhaps more often than not it holds deeper meaning to fans of the story—and still not want to look at it … ever again.

At the same time, there are countless sci-fi covers from around the world that are especially pleasing to the eye and the mind, whether for their out-of-this-world color schemes or their ability to surprise you in some way. In celebration of both Book Lovers Day and all things imaginative, we gathered some of our favorites here.

[Related: Did you know there’s a category specifically for covers & jackets in the HOW International Design Awards? | 19 Impressive To Kill A Mockingbird Covers from Around the World]

15 Beautiful Sci Fi Book Covers from Around the World

1. The World in Winter, Penguin Worlds, U.K., 2016, designed by La Boca

sci fi book covers

2. The Future is Japanese, Haikasoru, 2012, art directed by Nick Mamatas, illustrated by Yuko Shimizu

sci fi book covers

3. The Dancers of Noyo, Ace, U.S., 1973, cover art by Davis Meltzer

sci fi book covers

source: dangerousminds.net

4. The War of the Worlds, Epstein and Carroll Associates, 1960, illustrated by Edward Gorey

sci fi book covers
source: AbeBooks

5. A Clockwork Orange, Lighthouse Publishing, Thai edition, 2011, designer unknown

sci fi book covers
source: Goodreads

6. The Martian Chronicles, Zinātne, Latvian Edition, 1967, designer unknown

source: Goodreads

7. The Book of Strange New Things, Canongate Books, 2014, designed by Rafi Romaya, illustrated by Yehrin Tong

source: Canongate Books

8. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Chinese Edition, 2016, designer unknown

source: Goodreads

9. Brave New WorldVintage Publishing, U.K., 2004, designer unknown

sci fi book covers
source: Penguin Random House

10. Downward to the Earth, Signet Books, 1969, illustrated by Gene Szafran

sci fi book covers
source: yellowedandcreased.wordpress.com

11. The Day of the Triffids, Penguin, 2008, illustration by Andy Bridge

sci fi book coverssource: Amazon

12. Slaughterhouse 5, Triad/Panther Books, 1979, designer unknown

sci fi book covers
source: Goodreads | Librarian’s Note: this is an alternate cover edition

13. The Melancholy of Mechagirl, Haikasoru, 2013, art directed by Nick Mamatas, designed by Fawn Lau, illustrated by Yuko Shimizu

sci fi book covers

14. Brave New World Revisited, designer unknown

sci fi book covers
source: fontsinuse.com

15. True Names, U.K., 2016, designed by La Boca for Penguin Worlds

sci fi book covers

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