- Paperback: 144 pages
- Publisher: Workman Publishing Company; 2 edition (January 11, 1987)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0894803247
- ISBN-13: 978-0894803246
- Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.4 x 10 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 58 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #986,190 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Barlowe's Guide to Extraterrestrials: Great Aliens from Science Fiction Literature Paperback – January 11, 1987
See the Best Books of 2018 So Far
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for the best books of the year so far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Customers who bought this item also bought
"Any science fiction reader would enjoy receiving this as a gift." (Science Fiction Chronicle)
From the Back Cover
In his classic guide, Wayne Douglas Barlow's brilliant portraits bring to life 50 aliens from science fiction literature: Larry Niven's Thrint and his Puppeteer, Arthur C. Clarke's Overlord, Frank Herbert's Steersman, Robert Silverberg's Sulidor and more. Humanoids, insectoids, reptillians-even protoplasmic, gaseous and crystalline life forms-are all faithfully and naturalistically depicted so that you can now visualize what could only before be imagined.
Plus a special section taken directly from the artist's personal sketchbook, featuring renderings, notes and locomotive studies.
"Barlowe awes me. It's a breathtaking job of extending the author's vision . . ."-from the foreword by Robert Silverberg
"The illustrated field guide to extraterrestrials that every lover of science fiction must have."-The Brothers Hildebrandt
"Any science fiction reader would enjoy receiving this as a gift.-Science Fiction Chronicle
"Remarkable . . . The artist's imagination proves fully equal to the reader's own mental picture of these varied denizens."-ALA Booklist
A Hugo Award Nominee
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
I also need to remark here on Barlowe's meticulous combing of the source material for details to help the illustrations. He has seemingly read every detail about, say, a Thrint that ever saw print. The result is a drawing that you will probably never find contradicted by anything in the source stories and novels. The range is also excellent, covering many classic SF works. You may even find yourself introduced to an overlooked classic of genre fiction by finding a striking alien here, and tracking it back to the novel it came from.
I cannot recommend this book more highly. It would be cheap at twice the price.
Other masterpieces of this genera (which I own) include 'Space Wars Worlds and Weapons' Space Wars: Worlds & Weapons and the incomparable 'Spacecraft, 2000-2100 A.D.: Terran Trade Authority Handbook' Spacecraft, 2000-2100 A.D.: Terran Trade Authority Handbook.
It also indelibly etched Mr. Barlowe's visions of aliens firmly in my brain. Soon after this book was published, Mr. Barlowe's art began popping up on a slew of science fiction paperback covers. And so a generation of us grew up with his version of the Tran or Demon being THE version of those aliens.
Since then, he's gone on to become one of the most influential figures in science fiction. But as Mr. Barlowe has matured, so have we. And unfortunately, once the nostalgia goggles are off...some things about his Guide just don't stand up.
In the introduction, he and art director Ian Summers state that they wanted to portray aliens in a logical and plausible manner...definitely groundbreaking for the time. However, it's precisely because of that declaration some of the inconsistencies show through. Some aliens are depicted with a differing number of fingers and toes (which typically doesn't happen in evolutionary biology. I know...this is fiction. But still). The Chulpex, for instance, with its translucent skin displays its organs and skeleton, but not its musculature? Or The Overlord that hardly looks devilish enough to terrify the human population or use its wings get it off the ground. I realize I'm nitpicking. It's just that, for me (and I stress that), these definitive portraits have become less so over time.
Don't get me wrong. This is still an amazing book that's a doorway to a world of science fiction literature and a chance to see the early work of an incredible artist. And I share the other commenters desire to see an updated version of Barlowe's Guide to Extraterrestrials.
I was extremely happy to be able to find a copy of the book on Amazon after losing my original copy of the book years ago. I highly recommend this book to lovers of science fiction and art.