Adventures in Science Fiction Art: Visualizing Time, Part II (time travel + sundials + the decay of eternity + time portals)


(Walter Popp’s cover for the 1953 issue of Fantastic Story Magazine, ed. Samuel Mines)

It has been along time since I cobbled together a cover art post…

…but it’s a good one!

This is Part II of my Visualizing Time sequence—if you haven’t seen it already check out Part I.  And in Part II we have a standoff across time with your primitive ancestors, decay and the hourglass, rewriting America’s racist past, the sundial as an arena for an epic showdown with an alien, jumping through cave paintings (a metaphor, a metaphor!), and various crumbling clocks and visualizations of the workings of time…

I have a soft spot for Sam and Miriam Smith’s cover for the 1965 edition of Asimov’s The End of Eternity (1955).  Eternity, represented by a sequence of circles, literally drips from the page.  Vincent Di Fate’s cover for the 1972 edition of Laumer’s Timetracks (1972) is simply off the wall bizarre—I mean, he’s fighting an alien on a sundial!

What are your favorites?  Are the books any good?


(Uncredited cover for the 1963 issue of Sands of Time (variant title: The Sands of Time), Peter Dagmar)


(Uncredited cover for the 1970s cover of Voyages in Time (1967), ed. Robert Silverberg)


(Uncredited cover for the 1973 edition of Ten Tomorrows (1973), ed. Roger Elwood)


(Geoff Cummings’ cover for the 1979 edition of Time’s Last Gift (1972), Philip José Farmer)


(Raymond E. Meylan’s cover for the 1962 edition of Tomorrow Sometimes Comes (1951), F. G. Rayer)


(Uncredited cover for the 1972 edition of The Year of the Quiet Sun (1971), Wilson Tucker)


(Sam and Miriam Smith’s cover for the 1965 edition of The End of Eternity (1955), Isaac Asimov)


(Kelly Freas’ cover for the 1965 edition of The End of Eternity (1955), Isaac Asimov)

Screen shot 2012-05-26 at 5.12.58 PM

(Ed Valigursky’s cover for the 1964 edition of Key Out of Time (1963), Andre Norton)


(Vincent Di Fate’s cover for the 1972 edition of Timetracks (1972), Keith Laumer)


(Vincent Di Fate’s cover for the 1973 edition of Joyleg (1962), Avram Davidson and Ward Moore)


(Uncredited cover for the 1974 edition of Heart Clock (1973), Dirk Moreland i.e. Reginald Hill)


(Gray Marrow’s cover for the August 1966 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, ed. Edward L. Ferman)


(Steele Savage’s cover for the 1970 edition of Black in Time (1970), John Jakes)


(Uncredited cover for the 1988 edition of Black in Time (1970), John Jakes)


(George Ratcliffe’s cover for the August 1951 issue of Authentic Science Fiction Monthly, ed. L. G. Holmes)

(Uncredited cover for the 1969 issue of Beyond Tomorrow (1965), ed. Damon Knight)

For more cover art posts consult the INDEX

  1. Black in Time looks very promising and it’s certain the title divulges Jake’s destination with the plot as a kind of climactic deus ex machina. I’d love to read this book just to see just how lightly he tread on stereotypes by 70’s standards.


    1. The reviews online suggest it’s rather more akin to blaxploitation than effective social commentary. But, I’d have to read it to tell.


  2. Except for the ’88 version of Black In Time, there’s something about all the covers shown that appeal to me…especially the color and composition of Di Fate’s Timetracks. Real nice selection.


    1. Haha, yeah, I couldn’t help but put that one up though…. The premise of Black in Time tickles me.

      I like early Di Fate more than his later works. I might buy copy of Timetracks (a collection Laumer’s time travel themed stories) online — I’m intrigued.


      1. I’ve only read one of Laumer’s Retief books and sadly, didn’t like it. But time travel books are one of my passions so I’d definitely give it a try.


        1. I have at least four of his Retief collections but haven’t pick one up yet. I will eventually, my father swears they are Stanislaw Lem-lite and thus slightly worth reading.


  3. Speaking of Lem, I glanced across an anthology of short stories by authors (I believe it was all other than Lem himself) that are much in the vain of what Lem produced; quirky and psychedelic. I think there might be some exciting stories here:


    1. Ah, Adam Roberts among others… Looks interesting. Perhaps when I’m in the mood for newer SF again I’ll check it out.


  4. Black in Time! Oh, my. I’ll have to look out for that one. And it’s by John Jakes! The sequel should be titled Black to the Future!


    1. Have you read any of his novels before?


      1. I have not. My Mom has read a lot of his historical novels. So I grew up seeing his books around the house.


  5. Wow, I have not seen that edition of Key Out of Time by Andre Norton with the Ed Valigursky cover in many years! My grandfather picked up a handful of sci-fi books back in the 1960s, and this was one of them. I never did get around to reading this one, sadly. After my gradfather moved to Florida and then passed away, a lot of his possessions went into storage or were sold, including those old books. I eventually did end up finding a different edition of Key Out of Time several years ago… but I still have yet to read it. Too many books, too little time. But, wow, this really brought back memories. That cover by Valigursky is such an awesome image.


  6. Late even for me, but… Another enjoyable collection. I’m glad the …QUIET SUN cover was included. I loved the book–the title of the third book I’ve got on Kindle is intentionally named as a kind of echo to that title–and have found several good covers for it, including one by the Dillons.


    1. I’m actually reading The Year of the Quiet Sun right now!


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