Women of the Future!

This entry is all thanks to Heather, who cleaned out a bookstore shelf and found a treasure trove of PROGNOSTICATION. To heck with groundhogs and the weather and what's going to happen in publishing next.

We need to know about the future, the weather of the distant future, the role of women in the distant future, and, most importantly, the COLOR SCHEMES of the future. And so, I happily present:

Women of the Future: A coloriffic overview! (Please imagine that said in a Very Deep and Impressive Voice). 

Most of these books took place in the faraway future or a distant fantasyland. I see the covers as efforts to predict the future, old-skool style, and behold, they are amazing.

Heather wrote, “I've noticed that time travel/futuristic books really hog the market share of fuchsia for the more recent books.” Yes, that is most certainly true. In fact, I think the overabundance of fuchsia, teal, and cinnamon skies indicate that the firmament to come will be Technicolor indeed.

Imagine what'll happen when she sets fire to the rain! 

But what will we women be doing? What will life be like? Oh, the questions! Lucky for us, Heather's discovery of the Romances that Possibly Predicts the World to Come gives us a peek. 



Forget hybid cars – we'll have pegasus conveyances to drive us to the Ren Faire! That's awesome.  

But what will sex be like in the future?




Wait a minute….



Moon of Desire? Warrior Moon? And THREE books that proclaim “Love in another time, another place?”

Sounds like a lot of Backside in the Future, if you know what I mean, and I think you do.

And yet, look, most of the women on the covers appear to be sleeping:



Now how in the world are we going to sleep through that?!


Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    zinemama says:

    Moon of Desire should have been called Shoulders of Desire. His is bizarrely out of proportion and hers is awfully muscled for a woman. Wait – what exactly is that the about to illuminate?

  2. 2
    zinemama says:

    Uh, I meant to say, what exactly is that moon about to illuminate?

  3. 3
    PamG says:

    Someone should report that couple on Pegasus to the SPCA.  Also, I’ll never sneer at shiny torsos or the open white shirt billowing yet still tucked in after seeing That Certain Magic’s stylish square neckline and frou-frou sleeves on the supposed hero.  Makes her wench garb look almost… manly by comparison.

  4. 4
    DreadPirateRachel says:

    Funny how the future looks a hell of a lot like the medieval period as envisioned in the 1980s…

  5. 5
    Laura says:

    You know, I like to laugh at stupid covers as much as the next girl, especially the old skool covers.  What I don’t get is the large group that loves to read old skool novels.  I just can’t stand it, even for the wtf hilarity.  I’m wondering if I’m just missing the nostalgia factor because I started reading romance too late.  I’m 30, and I didn’t start reading romance until a few years ago.  How about it, ladies?  If you love old skool romance, does nostalgia for that first romance you sneaked from your mom’s bedside table influence your taste?  Or is there something else at work here that I’m unaware of?

  6. 6
    LG says:

    Sometimes that “futuristic romance” stamp was the only way to tell that the book you were about to read was a romance set in the future. And, even then, the future had a tendency to look like an alternate European medieval period, with magic to provide people with modern conveniences. ::fondly remembering my futuristic romance phase::

  7. 7
    SB Sarah says:

    I definitely have a nostalgic warm and fuzzy love for the first romances I read (first one: Midsummer Magic, Catherine Coulter) but sometimes the old skool romances also provide a few other things. There’s always crazysauce, where they are so over the top ridiculous they’re fun.

    But there are also books wherein the tropes and styles (and sometimes even language choices) are out of date, but the story and plot are still compelling. Sort of like watching 80’s tv and snorting at all the epic shoulderpads but still getting a little sniffly at the poignant moments.

  8. 8

    Whoa…the dude on Prisoner of Passion is a dead ringer for Willem Dafoe!

  9. 9
    Katie says:

    I want to know what the hero is going to do to that lady on the cover of Prisoner of Passion. I think it is something that might require some prep work.

  10. 10
    Karin Shah says:

    Love in another time and another place was the imprint’s tagline. And Warrior Moon (and most of the others here)are on on my Keeper shelf.

    Though, the covers are just as silly as other romance (and almost as silly as SF) covers of the same time period. Thinking especially of the completely naked from the side (hero) Johanna Lindsay cover.


  11. 11

    LOL, thanks for the morning chuckles!! Love ‘em!

  12. 12

    OMG the future is going to be full of men who like to take part in the “loving in another place” on a group of narcoleptic heroines?! Crap I’ll stick with the “In Death” version of the future with wars, stunners, slumlords and heroes that make sure you’re awake first.

  13. 13
    Laura says:

    Maybe I’ve just been unlucky in the old skool romances I’ve chosen to read.  So far, I’ve pretty consistently reached a point where the hero was too rapey or pulled some “I control you because I love you” bullshit and my response shifts from “that’s hawt” to “FUCK YOU ASSHOLE.”  And at that point, you know, the romance is gone.

    Not that old skool romance has cornered the market on controlling sons of bitches, but they do seem to proliferate there.  Do you just read past that kind of relationship, or am I picking the wrong books?

  14. 14
    Ellielu says:

    Getting naked in an ice cave—now that’s brave!

    “Are you kidding? Stick my tongue to that stupid pole? That’s dumb!”
    “That’s ‘cause you know it’ll stick!”
    “You’re full of it!”
    “Oh yeah?”
    “Well I double-DOG-dare ya!”
    NOW it was serious. A double-dog-dare. What else was there but a “triple dare you”? And then, the coup de grace of all dares, the sinister triple-dog-dare.

  15. 15
    Flo_over says:

    Wait… are there REALLY puffy sleeves in the future?  Cause… I am NOT digging that.  Not at all.  Buttsecks?  I can deal.  Narcolepsy?  No problem.  But PUFFY SLEEVES?  TOO.  MUCH.

  16. 16
    Jennifer says:

    These all look like slutty Lisa Frank stationery (my eyes! my eyes!)

  17. 17
    Darlynne says:

    Prisoner of Passion guy looks like a car mechanic trying to reach under the hood for something he can’t quite see but knows is there.

  18. 18
    delphia2000 says:

    I think I have all of those packed away someplace. I loved the sf/paranormal/fantasy type of romances (and have even written a few), but the covers of most romances in that era…yeah, those are a good reason to have to hide a book. Not that I ever did, but then I didn’t do much reading in public either. I do not remember them as being rapey but the Alpha Male was pretty well expected as the hero and I rather preferred them over the newish Beta Male that was being introduced at the time.

  19. 19
    Susan says:

    “Not that old skool romance has cornered the market on controlling sons of bitches, but they do seem to proliferate there. Do you just read past that kind of relationship, or am I picking the wrong books?”

    IMO, this does seem to be the norm for many of the old skools, contemporary and historical.  I completely quit reading romances for a long time because of the controlling/stalkerish heroes and the TSTL/doormat heroines.  Not all were like that, tho, and others made up for the “bad” parts with compelling and intense storylines that helped me overlook the freaky crap.

    There’s a difference between the old skool books that have held up for contemporary readers based on their merits versus those old sentimental “first romance I ever read” favorites.

  20. 20
    Susan says:

    Effective clothing fasteners (buttons, velcro, hook & eye, fabric ties,etc.) are obviously optional on The Clothes of the Future.  As well as support garments.

  21. 21

    i was thinking the same thing.  I guess everything really does come back again.

  22. 22
    Laura says:

    Interesting.  I think we may have the makings of a GS/STA list here: old skool romances that stand the test of time.  Where are the old classics that are rapey hero and TSTL heroine free?  Or which ones have such good plots that you put up with the bullshit?  (I’m not sure I can put up with it, because it takes me out of the story when I want to murder the hero, but others might like them).

    BTW, the only Catherine Coulter historical I’ve read was The Wyndham Legacy, which gave me The Rage.  The “hero” was so abusive that I wanted to jump into the book and beat him senseless.  I’m tempted to try SB Sarah’s first romance, as it was also a Catherine Coulter, but after reading a few reviews on amazon, I’m thinking that without the nostalgia, I wouldn’t be able to bear it.

  23. 23
    kkw says:

    I love those covers.  I love old school romances.  I love new romances.  If it’s trashy, count me in.

  24. 24
    Copa says:

    I totally agree with Laura here about getting a GS/STA of old skool. Just read Crystal Flame by Jayne Ann Krentz, and though it wasn’t really rapey, I’m pretty sure I could have beaten the hero to death with the book for the way the heroine was treated as some stupid female who needed to be protected from herself.

  25. 25

    Why, just yesterday my husband mooned me.  I’m already having the sex of the future!

  26. 26
    MissB2U says:

    I think the covers for “Moon of Desire” and “Prisoner of Passion” were switched at birth.  The heroine on “Moon” is technically facing the wrong way.

  27. 27
    The Other Susan says:

    If *that* is the sex of the future, I’ll do without.  Apologies to those whose tastes are broader than mine.  Y’all go right ahead, as long as your partners are consenting adults and you do it in private.

  28. 28
    Sybylla says:

    Truthfully, this makes me most nostalgic for the “Covers Gone Wild” blog entries.  Ah…the days when you could see page after page of holy-crap-what-the-hell-is-THAT?! novel covers… 

    I may have to do a site search to dig them all up again.

  29. 29
    Doug Brunell says:

    Okay, I just discovered this site.  As an author (not of romances), I have to say this site is great.  And that book cover with the pegasus … incredible in the strangest way possible.

  30. 30
    Heather says:

    Oh, wow! I’m so flattered that you did a whole cover snark entry on the covers I sent you! *blushes* I haven’t read any of them, but the covers were too fabulous not to share. I love working in a used bookstore. ^_^

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