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Worlds of Tomorrow: The Amazing Universe of Science Fiction Art Hardcover – August, 2004

4.0 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Loving laid out, crisply reproduced, seldom-seen imagery of the fantastic struts its gorgeous, garish stuff in a coffee-table tome…" -- Washington Post

"…is a gorgeous book featuring more than 175 covers from pulp magazines and books of the '30s, '40s and '50s." -- Seattle Times

Fans of tentacled, bug-eyed, scaly, menacing, mushroom-shaped, winged, fearsome and froglike extraterrestrials...should enjoy this... -- Chicago Tribune, December 12, 2004

From the Publisher

* More than 300 classic international science fiction paperback, pulp, and book covers.
* Summer release coincides with Paramount Pictures’ Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow and 20th Century Fox’s I, Robot.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Collectors Press (August 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 188805493X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1888054934
  • Product Dimensions: 11.3 x 9.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,066,564 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By John C. Hocking on August 22, 2004
Format: Hardcover
First let me say that this is a beautiful volume, full of lush reproductions of rare old book and magazine covers. Any fan of science fiction art or the pulps will find this an excellent addition to their library.

But there is a problem, and it is fully as irritating as it is strange. And it's pretty damn strange.

In compiling a historical retrospective of science fiction art, the editors have failed to credit the very artists they celebrate. Every single one of the hundreds of cover images reproduced here is accompanied by the name of the magazine, the month and year it appeared, and the name of the publisher. Book covers also add the name of the book's author, which is generally prominently displayed on the cover itself.

The artist is NEVER listed.

Not when the artist's name is credited in the magazine or book displayed.

Not when the artist is well known.

Not when the artist's style is unmistakable.

Not when the artist's signature is plainly visible in the image.

The editors, Forrest J. Ackerman and Brad Linaweaver, each provide several essays throughout the book. Every one of these has a byline so that we never confuse Linaweaver's prose with Ackerman's. I wish they had been half as meticulous about giving credit where it is due when dealing with the artists who supposedly inspired them.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Caveat emptor! Over ninety percent of the cover art images reproduced in this book are the size of bubble gum trading cards. I was under the impression that the images were all full page but no such luck. Once again quality is sacrificed for cheapness.
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Format: Hardcover
"Worlds of Tomorrow" is a truly wonderful and nostalgic look back at science fiction art of the golden age of pulp magazines and science fiction books. Written by Mr. Sci-Fi himself, Forrest Ackerman, along with Brad Linaweaver this is a dazzling look into the past at the wonderful art of the 20's through the 50's that graced the covers of those early sci-fi books and pulps such as Amazing Stories, Startling Stories, Astounding Stories, Galaxy, and many more. No one knows Sci-Fi like Uncle Forry and many credit him with coining that term in the first place. It was the very first issue of Amazing Stories that inspired Ackerman's life-long love of the genre and set him on his pace to accrue one of the most fabulous collections of memorabilia ever assembled.

The book reprints hundreds of these classic pulp and book covers along with running anecdotes from both Ackerman and Linaweaver. We look back at these great covers and discover just how visionary the artists were sixty plus years ago. Their works had a perhaps over-spectacular flair to them, but they foreshadowed much of the technology we use today like computers, cell phones, atomic power, spacecraft, and robots. Frank R. Paul was the first star of pulp art as his work graced many covers of Hugo Gernsback's amazing stories and now sells for thousands of dollars today.

Each chapter takes on a different subject such as chapter two's look at space travel with all manner of fantastic rockets, and ships and saucers. It's interesting to see how designs changed from the earliest pulps of the 20's to the 1950's when actual space programs were able to provide inspiration to the artists. One can even see our present day space shuttles in the works of these early talents.
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Format: Hardcover
I have to agree with the reviewers who said there are no credits on the great works of art in this book. They are some of the best I have seen to represent the genre. It gives me inspiration to start painting and drawing again in my favorite of all genres...sci fi. The only fault in this book is that it should have been longer and had more art reproductions of the covers. I loved every page of this. I can see some of the ships slightly resemble the U.S.S. Enterprise. Probably that's where Matt Jeffries got his inspiration. From these pulp covers there are images that can be retro fitted for today's sci fi movies.
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Format: Hardcover
This highly anticipated book is gorgeous. It has innumerable SF covers, mostly from the pulps. Ackerman's encyclopedic knowledge in this area enables the book to have a historical as well as aesthetic perspective. The book also has superb production values. This one's a keeper!
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Format: Hardcover
Back more years ago than I want to admit when I was first getting interested in science fiction the main source was a series of magazines and paperback (or as wee called them at the time pocketbooks) with fantastic covers designed to attract the eye to the contents.

Modern book covers just don't seem to convey the same feeling. They are more modern, they realize that bug eyed monsters, sleek space ships (that all look surprisingly like the German V-2), cities on the moon, rainy jungles on Venus don't and even can't exist. The new covers certainly don't have the same feel as the old ones.

This book brings back the images from the past. And these were the books/magazines where the first of many of the classic writers Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, H. G. Wells, Robert Heinlein and more. Here is the first illustration of Ae van Vogt's 'The Weapon Shops of Isher.'

It's a fascinating book to look through, over and over. Oh yes, there's some text here too, but frankly I haven't read it. I've tried, but I get so distracted by the pictures that I'm soon just looking. I'll read it one day.
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