Show Us Your Favorite Pulp Book Covers!

I love books. Trying to live in a tiny New York apt, it’s a big problem that I absolutely refuse to curb. One of my favorite types of book to collect are pulpy pocket novels. Not only are they more spatially economical, their covers (which is really why I buy them) are some of the most incredible pieces of far-out artwork you’ll ever find. There was definitely a heyday in the 70s and 80s, when fantasy, sci-fi, horror, and mystery book covers were really swinging for the fences (for more on this check out Grady Hendrix’s awesome book, Paperbacks From Hell), but for decades before and after, pulp book covers have been making reading weirder and more exciting. Now we want to see the most insane pulp covers you’ve ever come across!

In the comments below, tell us about your favorite pulp book cover (or just your favorite crazy book cover in general)! Tell us about the book, where you found it, and what you love about it. Most importantly, if you have any pictures of your unforgettable book cover, post that as well. Your submission may be included in an upcoming round-up post on Atlas Obscura. We don’t have to judge these books by their covers, but we should certainly celebrate them!


This book I found at my local library book sale. The cover caught my eye so I decided to get it. My friend always loved old/weird books in the free section of the library so I got this book for his birthday. He liked it so much that he did a book report on it.

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I just found this!

First if all the 80’s take on 30’s noir is tight. I love the cover. I only really picked it up out if a bargain bin because I thought it might have served as some inspiration for the Nick Cave song (it didn’t). But read this book, if you haven’t. It’s actually spectacular. Think if David Lynch tried to write a Raymond Chandler novel while suffering from a case of stream-of-consciousness.

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