Since it’s summer, it’s not uncommon for children and teenagers to undergo a summer reading program at their local library. Of course, as you’ve know by the title of this post, this isn’t one in where I’d give recommendations. In fact, this is a fourth edition post on bad book covers instead. Now when a book’s published, you’d think that some people would come up with a suitable cover design to sell copies. But this isn’t always the case. As with the bad covers of classic books, you’d have to wonder whether the designer ever read the books at all. I mean they should. Still, seeing such an inappropriate cover on some classic novel might lead to you having to explain that Thomas Hardy’s Wessex Tales has absolutely nothing to do with Slash from Guns n’ Roses. Seriously, this guy died before Slash was even born. Then there are covers that feature the wrong location than the book titles clearly imply as well as ones that depict it’s from an entirely different genre. For instance, there’s a cover for Cranford that implies it’s about some type of sci-fi world when it’s really an English 19th century novel about two spinsters. And there’s a company that issues classic novels with paintings of nude women on the cover, even on titles like Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe. Nevertheless, without further adieu, here is another edition of book covers you can hardly believe exist. Some stuff on this post might not be safe for work.
- You Let Some Girl Beat You? by Ann Meyers Drysdale with John Ravenna
I hate to ask this question but isn’t the title a bit sexist? I don’t want to sound rude but the idea of being beaten by a girl doesn’t seem to have great connotations. To put it mildly.
About a female basketball player. Why this is the title I have no idea.
2. Why Do Men Have Nipples?: Hundreds of Questions You’d Only Ask a Doctor After Your Third Martini by Mark Leyner and Billy Goldberg M.D.
What’s even funnier is how this is listed as a #1 New York Times bestseller. Now this makes me wonder what kind of people would be interested in this book. Then again, as to why men have nipples is a rather interesting question.
Hmmm…..I guess this title indicates that this book will be full of rather interesting medical questions by drunks.
3. 50 Ways to Use Feminine Hygiene Products in a Manly Manner (for the Self-Assured Male) by B. Koz
Even funnier is how you see a guy hunting with his dog on the cover. Probably a way for the designer to show readers that this it’s a book for manly men. But it begs the question on how you can use a tampon for duck hunting.
Because tampons, sanitary napkins, and menstrual cups don’t just have to be for women anymore.\
4. The Bible Cure for Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Ancient Truths, Natural Remedies, and the Latest Findings for Your Health Today
Now how does the Bible have a cure for Irritable Bowel Syndrome? I’m not sure if it even does. If it did, I’m sure it wouldn’t be pleasant. Besides, I’d rather not trust biblical medicine, for obvious reasons.
Yes, treat your irritable bowel syndrome the way they did in biblical times.
5. In Praise of the Stepmother by Mario Vargas Llosa
Now it’s all right to like your stepmother. And it’s perfectly fine to find her attractive. But it’s not okay to make out with her, touch her boobs, or have anything other than a platonic relationship with her. Seriously, who thought this image would make a great cover? That’s insane!
Okay, I’m sure that’s not the way to have a relationship with your stepmother.
6. Green Light for Death by Frank Kane
Then again, people did smoke a lot in those days. Perhaps, they couldn’t see the naked woman from the cloud of smoke. Or the guy with the gun. Still, not sure if cigarettes create that much smoke at any given time. Must’ve been a party.
For some reason only the guy with the gun is paying attention to the naked lady.
7. Twilight of Briareus by Richard Cowper
I’m getting the impression that a lot of these sci-fi covers just don’t make sense. Maybe it’s just too many cover designers on acid. But I can’t be sure.
Man, I didn’t expect a cover with a giant perplexed space baby. Wonder where that came from.
8. The Moment of Truth by Maggie Price
She may want to save sex for marriage. But that doesn’t mean that she won’t reach into a guy’s pants and feel around for his junk first. Yeah, this cover has very bad photo placement. I mean it suggests something more inappropriate than it’s supposed to convey.
And it seems that this woman has her hand in a guy’s pants.
9. Trixie Belden #1: The Secret of the Manison
Now I’m sure Trixie’s buddy isn’t trying to get into her pants but it sure looks like it. Then again, they might be experimenting with their sexuality. Yes, I’m sure people suspecting lesbianism will have fun with this.
And it seems that Trixie’s best friend has some secret of her own that she wouldn’t want Trixie to know. Their relationship is rather complicated.
10. The Ninety Trillion Fausts by Jack L. Chalker
Now I know this is a sci-fi book but still. Goethe manage to write a story with just one Faust in it. Why would anyone want to write with 90 trillion is beyond me.
Because One Big Space Devil wouldn’t work so well.
11. The Big Bernie Madoff Coloring and Activity Book by Jeff Pollack and Lane Steinberg and illustrated by Maria Villanueva
Now this is just crazy since we all know what Bernie Madoff did basically put him in jail for the rest of his life. I mean it was pretty horrible. Still, hope the kiddies enjoy activities like Cooking the Books, Pyramid Scheme, Hush Money, Take the Money and Run, and more. Seriously, this is a real book from Amazon.
Now young children can enjoy how set up their own little Ponzi schemes on Wall Street from America’s #1 financial sociopath.
12. National Security Space Strategy Considerations by Rick Larned, Cathy Swan Ph.D., and Peter Swan Ph.D.
Now this is pretty bad photoshop. Not sure if having patrol cars in outer space will do the trick. But, oh well, makes a funny cover image anyway. Also makes the book hard to take seriously despite it being written by people who seem to know their stuff.
Would’ve been one of those boring documents that never seen the light of day, except for the police car with rocket blasters orbiting the earth.
13. Meanwhile Back at the Morgue by Mike Avallone
Hate to break it to you, but I’m sure the cover has the brunette on the bearskin rug looking very much alive. Then again, I’m not sure if I’d trust her either. She might be the killer for all we know.
Can’t tell whether this is a pulp mystery or a sleazy romance novel.
14. Bumsider by C.C.MacApp
Now that’s probably one of the most evil equines I’ve ever see. Besides, who the hell would want to title their book Bumsider? Seriously, seems like a sci-fi book taking place inside somebody’s large intestine.
Featuring some clawing, bipedal horses if I were to see on the cover.
15. Moorcock: The Blood Red Game
Now other than the tunnel of red ghosts on the cover, I have to feel bad for the shirtless afroed Moorcock in this book. Seems like the kind of guy who was bullied a lot in school. Yeah, that name really doesn’t help him, save maybe in porn.
I wonder what kind of mother would think of her teenage kid reading a book with that title which has nothing to do with porn.
16. The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkein
And it seems that Gollum keeps waking up on the wrong side of the bed. Boy, he sure looks like hell on this cover. Still, I wonder if Bilbo Baggins should get a membership for the Ye Olde Shire Gym when he comes home.
Seems like Bilbo Baggins really needs to lay off the second breakfast Egg McMuffins these days. This journey might give him the work out he needs to stave off that Type II Diabetes.
17. Wizard of Storms by Dave Van Arnam
Doesn’t help that the cover features two naked guys trying to catch the wizard guy’s balls. Wait a minute, did I just say that? Please, I don’t want to know why.
I haven’t seen such homoerotic wizardry since J.K. Rowling’s Dumbledore’s Closet.
18. The Muffin Muncher by Stephen Cosgrove and illustrated by Robin James
Unfortunately, a muffin muncher can also mean something quite a bit different from what this book implies. Let’s just say I can’t talk about what Urban Dictionary’s definition of a muffin muncher. Except that it has absolutely nothing to do with muffins. Probably is subject to as much misinterpretation as Puff the Magic Dragon.
Just another children’s book about some innocent dragon who likes muffins, right?
19. The Magical Scarecrows: A Chanukah Guessing Games and Colouring Book by Auntie Lynn Santer
Now this looks like something you’d put on a greeting card commemorating a brisk. Also, what the hell do magical scarecrows have to do with Chanukah? Then again, I’m not a Jew so I’d probably not understand these things. But when I hear about magical scarecrows, I’m more likely to think about the Wizard of Oz than anything pertaining to Judaism.
Love to thank the Lord for a moment to give thanks that bad religious book covers aren’t just limited to Christianity.
20. Perry Rhodan der Erbe des Universums: Die Mikro-Festung (AKA The Micro-Fortress) by K.H. Scheer and Clark Dalton
Now this is part of a famous German sci-fi series from the 1960s which has sold over a billion copies. It’s the most successful sci-fi book series ever written. However, you’d think a series like this would have a better cover design. Looks like that rocket ship is has launched from Perry’s pants.
Is is just me or does it seem that there’s a rocket launching from some astronaut’s ass?
21. Godsfire by Cynthia Felice
Of course, you have to wonder about people who think that a sci-fi story set on a cat people planet could ever be taken seriously. Also, I heard their Almighty Cat God is Fluffers.
Guess this sci-fi book draws inspiration from Star Wars and Cats.
22. A Serbian 8th Grade Biology Textbook
I’d especially love to see the chapter on human reproductive systems. It would be quite disappointing to find that this book says nothing about the nature of chronic menstrual cramps in African American men. Also, I’m sure the baby on this cover is actually a child they kidnapped from some rich guy because of her fertility problems and his criminal record. Seriously, if you saw Raising Arizona, you’d know this.
Little did the Coen Brothers know that their 1980s comedy featuring child abduction, apocalyptic bikers, and Nicholas Cage would be pictured on a bio text book for 13 year olds.
23. Peggy’s Sexcess by Dan Brook
I guess that parent teacher conferences will be getting a whole lot awkward from now on. Yeah, I’m sure a skin tight bodysuit isn’t allowed in the school dress code. Especially ones that expose the nipples.
“Don’t be shy, Peggy. This is your new mommy. We’re going to have so much fun together!”
24. Swords in the Mist by Fritz Leiber
I guess someone’s going to be sushi tonight, and I’m sure it’s not the octopus. Yeah, can’t tell whether it’s one of the lamest things I’ve seen or the coolest. And I guess there are the scantily clad purple and green girls in the background.
Our muscular hero with a toga wedgie might be one of the best warriors of the galaxy, but can he get past the dreaded sword fighting octopus?
25. The Stray Shopping Cars of Eastern North America: A Guide to Field Identification by Julian Montague
In the book, the author makes an elaborate system pertaining to abandoned shopping carts. From Amazon: “In The Stray Shopping Carts of Eastern North America author Julian Montague has created an elaborate classification system of abandoned shopping carts, accompanied by photographic documentation of actual stray cart sightings. These sightings include bucolically littered locations such as the Niagara River Gorge (where many a cart has been pushed to its untimely death) and mundane settings that look suspiciously like a suburb near you. “
A must have for the homeless at bookstores everywhere.
26. Political Satire of the Whore of Babylon Biblical Revelation by R. Archer
Now I get that Hillary may not be well liked among this book’s target audience. But come on, to call her the Whore of Babylon is kind of exaggerating. And I’m sure she doesn’t have evil red eyes. Besides, I highly doubt that the Whore of Babylon would ever put up with spending her days in a pantsuit.
Seems like somebody really doesn’t like Hillary Clinton.
27. The Rifleman
Now The Rifleman was a western TV show pertaining to a father and son in the 1950s. However, though I’m sure this book’s for kids, the cover image suggests otherwise.
I think the designers didn’t think about the implications involving the log’s proximity to the man’s crotch.
28. Child of Flame by Kate Elliot
Then again, I’m sure his red mane gives the princess something to hold onto during the ride. However, I’m sure the destination won’t be so pleasant from what I can tell by the guy’s facial expressions.
Have no idea why the griffin in this cover has a demonic human head resembling a rock musician from the 1980s.
29. A Feast Unknown by Philip Jose Farmer
Since it’s an “adults only” book, you can speculate this is about a 1980s bodybuilder transported to some wilderness where he has only his rifle to survive. Still, the guy’s proportions are terrible since he seems to have no hips.
Let’s just say that I’m sure this guy is trying to compensate for something. Or he’s just that manly to go out hunting so scantily.
30. Surfing Samurai Robots by Mel Gilden
Now this just looks ridiculous. Also, I wonder what that thing is in a green coat and jeans. Doesn’t seem to be in place here. Not to mention, the robot duck is quite adorable.
Seems like that woman is very turned on by the muscle bound samurai robot in a speedo.
31. Liberace: Your Personal Fashion Consultant by Michael and Karen Feder
Now who in their right mind would want to wear that outfit? Might be something that Liberace would wear. But everyone else? Hell, no! I’m sure any normal guy wearing this would be thrown out of every bar in town, save the place they serve the gays. Seriously, this must be a joke.
Oh, no, they can’t be serious! Why would anyone want Liberace as their personal fashion consultant?
32. The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
What’s even worse is that this book’s been published with photos of Anne Frank for decades. Why a designer in South Korea thought replacing her with a slutty blond, I have no idea. Seriously, there’s no excuse for having a cover like this.
Jesus Christ! Anne Frank was a Jewish teenage girl during the Holocaust! She died in a concentration camp for God’s sake! Not some skanky blonde call girl from LA!
33. Ma! There’s Nothing to Do Here! by Barbara Park and illustrated by Vivianna Garofoli
Yes, I know childbirth and pregnancy can be disgusting. But still, I’m sure this woman should opt for a c-section since the baby has such an over-sized head. Also, maybe it’s best to leave the childbirth out of kiddie books. Just for the sake of not having covers like this.
Let’s just say that womb illustration gives me the creeps.
34. Compensating for Something by Ana Leigh
Wouldn’t be surprised if this book pertained to some Brokeback Mountain type romance. Yet, I’m sure the guy won’t disrobe on his wedding night due to possessing a tiny shaft.
Guess this is about a cowboy’s struggle with his insecure masculinity.
35. The Haunted Vagina by Carlton Mellick III
I’m sure this girl’s vagina isn’t really haunted. Might seem that way because she’s a demon. But as the skeletons can tell you, there were plenty of guys who just didn’t listen.
Of course, the horns on her ears should’ve been a warning that she was bad news.
36. Jimmy’s Lawn Service by Tory Napoli
Seems like Jimmy will have a lot of explaining to do for being quite a busy boy. Hope he doesn’t get into much trouble screwing every woman in town. Because no man wants to deal with child support, jealous husbands, paternity suits, possibly murder, and more. So perhaps guys should just keep it in their pants or use protection.
Guess landscaping isn’t Jimmy’s only service in this case. Hope he’s at least 18.
37. The Feminists by Parley J. Cooper
Man, seems like someone really doesn’t like feminism according to the cover. Of course, he probably has no idea of what feminism is and thinks they hate men, instead of the structural patriarchal sexism that they have to put up with every day of their lives. Seems the author doesn’t notice this. And I’m sure he really hates women as you see on the cover.
Guess this is a rather popular book for misogynistic trolls on Reddit, Talk Radio fans, and men’s rights activists.
38. The Sheik by E.M. Hull
Actually I’ve seen the movie which is about a supposedly Arab sheik who kidnaps and nearly rapes a white woman in Northern Africa. But they fall in love. Guaranteed to anger Muslims and feminists alike. Well, if it weren’t for the fact that the movie hadn’t aged bad enough to be an unintentional comedy (it was made in the 1920s). Also, he’s actually English and Spanish, which doesn’t seem believable in the least bit.
A romance between a rich Arab guy and a white woman who can fit in his hand.
39. Moosed-Up by Tiffinie Helmer
Actually it would be better if they actually kill the moose, stuffed its head, and then used his antlers as a clothes rack. Because moose aren’t very nice animals and kill more people than bears.
I’m sure the bull moose would be ideally suited for a clothes rack. And by the clothes, I guess it’s a romance novel.
40. Changing Planes by Ursula K. Le Guin
Naked woman rising from a corn husk in the morning? Now that’s messed up. Seriously, I’ve heard of corns but this is ridiculous. Also bad photoshop.
Seems like at least one of the Children of the Corn is all grown up.
41. The Game of Love by Jean Rossetta
Also, I’m not sure if “Ho Ho,” is a great name for a game show in a romance novel. Besides, we all know that she’s going to end up on the Goodyear Blimp with the Michelin Tire Man.
It was said that her hair was molded from the finest tire rubber, no doubt.
42. Duck Dy-Nasty: Nasty Gays with Big Guns by Sky Eagleday
Of course, this cover image is just ridiculous. Besides, pointing a gun at a rubber duck? I’m sure it’ll traumatize little kids. But adults will find such an image too hilarious to take this book seriously.
Man, seems Rubber Ducky will soon be off to the great bathtub in the sky. Ernie must be horrified.
43. Santa Claus Lays the Virgin by Rachel Jakes
Oooh, boy, looks like Santa belongs on the naughty list as of this Christmas. Yeah, screwing scantily clad teenage girls can do that for you. Seriously, what the hell is wrong with Chris Kringle these days?
Seems like Santa is a dirty old man and I’m sure that Mrs. Claus will at least have him sleep on the couch after this.
44. A Gronking to Remember by Lacey Noonan
This book was actually subject to a lawsuit by an Ohio couple alleging the author had used their engagement photo without their permission. I’m surprised that it wasn’t sued by the New England Patriots. It also has a sequel called Chad Goes Deep in the Neutral Zone.
“It was a passion that could not be spiked,” as well as fumbled, snatched, or intercepted.
45. Crystal Cabbage: Meth Whore by E. L. Vyse
I’m sure this author is really aiming for fans of Breaking Bad. Still, I can understand the image. Because featuring a real meth whore on the cover wouldn’t be a sure sell. Then again, she could’ve used Gollum who’s a pretty close approximation.
I’m sure if she was a real meth whore, she’d look way less attractive than that. And I bet her teeth are better looking, too.
46. How to Catch Crabs by Demelza Carlton
Let’s hope the crab catching these people do doesn’t lead to them itching and scratching their nether regions afterwards. Then again, if one of them has crabs, then they should probably see a doctor and keep it in their pants.
Actually I’d rather learn how not to catch crabs, thank you very much.
47. Dating for Under a Dollar: 301 Ideas compiled by Blair Tolman
Sure it might be handy during tough economic times. But would you really want to be seen buying it is the question. Not to mention, I’m not sure how they came up with 301 dating ideas under a buck. Just seems impossible at a time when a typical McDonald’s meal costs more. Also known as “301 First Dates.” And not with the same person.
I’m sure some of these will have to be adjusted for inflation.
48. Taken by the Toaster by Dick Thumper
If I saw my boyfriend in bed with a toaster, I wouldn’t be accusing him of cheating. Actually, I’d think he’s losing his mind and should get his head examined. Seriously, a love story between a man and his toaster, why?
Seems like this is a little too attached to his kitchen appliances.
49. A Pagan’s Nightmare by Ray Blackston
But that doesn’t mean embracing Christianity ha s prevented Jaws from eating people, though. He still finds their flesh too tempting for his own good.
Guess our favorite great white has embraced the teachings of Jesus Christ by the looks of it.
50. True Romance by Beth Kincaid
Now I’m sure this is supposed to be geared to young girls and Katie has probably has no fantasies about banging horses whatsoever. Still, the title and tagline don’t help matters. And might suggest that this book pertains to pre-teen girls and bestiality.
“Katie’s fallen in love- with a horse, of course!” Seriously, why go with that tagline?
51. What a Body! by Alan Green
From the cover: “Murder shouldn’t be fun, but Sandra was luscious enough to eat, and Hugo’s ideas about what to do with her were rather different.” Okay, maybe she should probably dump him and run to the nearest police station. It’s probably the sanest thing to do.
Also known as Yes, He’s Just That Into You But in a Very, Very Bad Way.
52. A Solitary Man by Beverly Bird
Man: “Oh, sweetheart, I want to make ravishing love to you under the full moon. I need you. I want you. I love you. You set my soul on fire.”
Woman: “Not tonight. Not ever. And if you don’t leave now, I shall file for a restraining order against you so I’ll never have to see you again.”
And will very much remain so according to the cover.
53. Randy Bamboo in Chicken City by RC Beaird and illustrated by Amy Koch Johnston
Yeah, this is children’s book with one of the dirtiest titles I’ve ever read. I’m sure perverted parents are bound to be disappointed. Also, Chicken City kind of looks segregated. Just a thought.
From Bad Book Covers: “Try to come up with a kids’ book title that sounds more like a euphemism for a Thai sex tour. You cannot.”
54. Always Ask a Man: the Key to Femininity by Arlene Dahl
And by “femininity” she probably means “indentured servitude.” I may hate burning books, but I’ll make this one an exception. Why should I ask a men how to be feminine, good God.
Worst advice about being a woman ever.
55. I Saw Him First by Marjorie Sharmat
Looks like these two girls are fighting over a robot who has absolutely no fashion sense and seems to like Hostess cupcakes. Also, he might be blind. Then again, maybe it’s a teenage “Weekend at Bernie’s” situation which might be quite terrifying.
From how I see it, the guy seems to have such a total lack of personality that he’s not even worth the attention.
56. The Lady Was a Man by Mark Shane
I have to admit, if I saw a man in women’s clothes, I’d probably know. It’s usually not that hard to figure out gender. Nevertheless, this guy might have some issues with his sexuality after that moment. Also, the abstract suggests date rape, which I think is even more disturbing. I meaning knocking out someone to disrobe is certainly a prelude to it. Guy must have serious problems.
Guess he’s never heard of “Lola” or The Crying Game.
57. Risky Dishes for Rescue Dogs by Howie “Homeboy” MacScruff
And I’m sure dogs shouldn’t be eating some of that food on the table. Particularly the sundae with chocolate sauce. To a dog, that’s a very lethal dessert.
He didn’t choose the pound life. Pound life chose him.
58. Eminent Victorians by Lytton Strachey
Even if you haven’t read this book, you should know that a book about famous people in the Victorian age shouldn’t have a Viking on it. Better go with a picture of Charles Dickens, not Eric the Red. Seems like the cover designer knows nothing about history. Or just thinks a Viking on the cover looks cool.
Cover seems to give the impression that the Victorian Era took place in the 9th century, not the 19th.
59. Life of Chopin by Franz Lizst
For God’s sake, Frederic Chopin was a French-Polish pianist who had a 9 year love affair with George Sand. Also he lived during the 19th century Romantic Era and died young. He was never a guitar wielding folksinger from the 1960s who wore Levis. Did these people even do their research?
Seems more appropriate for a Johnny Cash biography to me.
60. Norwegian Life by Ethlyn T. Clough
For those who think that Norway would make a great tropical vacation spot this summer, you must be sorely mistaken. Seriously, that looks more like the Bahamas than Norway. Besides, part of Norway is in the Arctic circle not on the Equator. Someone really knows nothing about geography.
For God’s sake, that doesn’t look the least like a place with terrible winters. And I’m sure they don’t have palm trees any more than they have parrots.