Science fiction cover art has a bad reputation. Not without reason: much of it is pulpy, overly brash, or just plain scary — it’s kind of the name of the game. Yet there are also plenty of science fiction novels and collections that buck the trend and manage to be not only palatable to those that (for instance) love the insides but hate that naked green woman on the cover, but downright gorgeous. After the jump, a selection of some of the best, from vintage paperbacks to new and shiny hardcovers. Don’t see your favorite here? Do everyone a favor and add it to the list in the comments.
The Melancholy of Mechagirl, Catherynne M. Valente, art by Yuko Shimizu