Cover Snark: On Call at Nips General

*chants* Cover snark! Cover snark! *chants*

Doctor O by Lilian Monroe. A very veiny, greasy, and shirtless man is looking down at his crotch. He has a stethoscope around his neck, so you know he must be a doctor.

Amanda: Another doctor on call at Nips General Hospital.

Sarah: I wonder what their private practice wall art is like. I bet it isn’t sunsets and successories about health.

Shana: So. Many. Veins. It must be easy for him to do a blood draw on himself.

AJ: Sir, please put your shirt on, I’m not here for that kind of injection.

Lara: I’m looking at that raised shape on this forehead and I can think of two possibilities: 1. Intensely angry with his naughty abs and/or penis . 2. He’s shapeshifting into a unicorn!

Catherine: Lara, your second suggestion is spot on. And obviously it takes effort to shapeshift, which is why all his veins are popping out. (Incidentally, since when are veins sexy to non-vampire people? Or am I the only one who finds them unappealing?)

Sneezy: Could he be part Klingon?

CarrieS: You’d think a doctor would know how dangerous that amount of dehydration is.

Lost Love by Kelly Elliot. A man in his undies is kneeling in a bed. He's pulling a woman's legs around his waist, but all you can see are the legs. No body or torso or anything else.

Amanda: Nothing says romance like a disembodied pair of legs.

Sarah: That you wear like handlebars.

Carrie: Mannequin IV: The Yoga version.

Elyse: I’m not an expert or anything, but I don’t think that sex position works…unless you’re trying to have intercourse with her knees.

AJ: Their game of “Head and Shoulders, Knees and Toes” took a tragic turn …

Catherine: Lost love indeed. He’s lost the top two thirds of his girlfriend, by the look of it.

Sneezy: His head is barely in the frame. It looks like his torso is some kind of parasite, and the nipples are the eyes.

Pestilence by Laura Thalassa. A long, blond-haired dude (a la Orlando Bloom Legolas from Lord of the Rings) is very interested in what's going on by his peen.

From Darlynne: There is a great deal to like about this cover. I am particularly enamored of his glyphs and armor, although a good shampoo wouldn’t go amiss. But looking down at himself, and some of those glyphs pointing into his pants…

What’s Pestilence got down there and why do we have to think about that? Probably not the right pose for this particular horseman.

Sarah: He’s very interested in his pants, and what they contain. Is that the real pestilence?

Amanda: I like how is armor is only for the arms.


Aarya: The armor just in the arms makes me think that he wants to hide something. Like, diseased arms. It might just be for cosmetic purposes!

Sarah: He should keep his hands out of his pants for sure.

Amanda: I believe Elyse reviewed this one but couldn’t get past the genocide angle.

Aarya: I don’t know if you watched the Good Omens adaptation, but the way the Four Horsemen are portrayed there (evil and genocidal) makes me feel like Four Horsemen are a really tough draw. Then again, I don’t like a lot of dark heroes.

Elyse: Yeah it was…a lot.

Sarah: I was just wondering that, Amanda, was this the one where the hero had to kill a LOT OF PEOPLE and it was all okay with everyone but her?

Elyse: Yes.


Amanda: It’s definitely a book I recommend for the “morality chain” trope.

Elyse: He kills little kids and old people, though.

Aarya: Oh nooo. Does he stop killing at the end?

Elyse: Nope.

Show Spoiler
Well, his part of the apocalypse is over so he gets to retire but he doesn’t quit for ethical reasons.

When I got to the little kids I thought that this would be the part where he was like “no, I can’t do this anymore” but he was like /shrug.

And I never got the impression that he was unable to stop. Like he didn’t have free will. It was just his job.

I could totally see how people are really into morality chain tropes would like it. It reminds me of a lot of fan fic with villain characters.

Lara: I saw the title. Saw what appeared to be a pregnant belly and/or broken spine. And then it became obvious: he is birthing the pestilence! This is Alien fanfic!

Catherine: Why is his spine on the front of his body? This is making me very uncomfortable.

Sneezy: THIS one has to be part Klingon! And fuck faux armor! ESPECIALLY ON BARE SKIN. I bet they chafe and STAB.

Tara: I think I might be the only one who doesn’t mind the armor that protects barely anything, but that’s only because it seems fair after years of bad armor design for women in video games.

Elyse: Also the sequel has nonsense armor too.

War by Laura Thalassa. A long-haired dude in a desert. His chest is bare, save for one leather shoulder pad.

Elyse: Luckily his left nipple is protected.

Amanda: Well that’s obviously his favorite one.

Elyse: No idea how she’s going to do Famine.

Aarya: It might not be! His hair might be covering the unprotected left nipple.

Those names are…off putting. I’m okay with War and Death, but the other two are…unattractive.

Amanda: I mean, yeah, Pestilence is not sexy.

Aarya: I’m wondering if the names would be improved if she gave them the JR Ward treatment. You know, Fhamine or Pezstilhence.

Carrie: Oh, War. You, at least, should know better.

Elyse: I kinda feel like this is the equivalent of all the dumb cleavage armor female characters wear. Like all of his vulnerable spots are totally exposed.

Sarah: I bet his nipple is covered. He wants to keep the option of a position at Nips General Hospital as a backup option, should being WAR not work out.

AJ: I was going to try to logically extrapolate the position of his left nipple so we could settle this once and for all … but then I realized that there is no logic to nipple placement on romance covers. It could be anywhere. It could be IN YOUR HOUSE.

Fear the nipple. FEAR IT.

Catherine: I’m with Carrie. War ought to know that armor works better if it actually covers your torso.

Sneezy: AJ, I had planned on sleeping in this life. *clutches canned beans and can opener under bed*

AJ: No sleep, Sneezy! Only cold beans and constant nipple vigilance.

Comments are Closed

  1. Zyva says:

    All the abs and shield shoulder pads remind me of the bother I had finding a minimalist cross-body pouch bag thingmo. And what was there was for men. I was thinking more on the lines of a non-violent ‘pen mightier than the sword’ bandolier, not ‘anti theft’ or stuff that comes in camo. Sigh.

    Anyhow, I suppose it’s worrying that I’m seeing the potential for guys’ 6-8 packs to be styled into zippered pockets in a costume. Halloween IS coming up, and pockets are so functional …but many would draw the line at ‘is that a Hannibal tie-in’?

  2. Deianira says:

    “I think I might be the only one who doesn’t mind the armor that protects barely anything, but that’s only because it seems fair after years of bad armor design for women in video games.”

    Tara, as a scarred survivor of SO MANY VIDEO GAMES with bad “armor” design for women, I salute you!

    Still salty over my first pair of plate armor pants in WoW. On my friend’s male warrior they were, you know, PANTS. On my female paladin they were bikini bottoms.

  3. DiscoDollyDeb says:

    !)I can’t even figure out the LOST LOVE cover logistics. He’s kneeling at the very edge of the bed and wearing her legs the way a kid who can’t swim yet wears one of those waist floaties in the pool. If he inches any closer to the edge, he’s going to fall right off, taking legs with him.

    As for Dr. Nips’s forehead, I (who have, of course, made a thorough study of male cover models—if only there were a Ph.D. in Contemporary Studies that would support my dissertation) have noted that when the cover is supposed to denote a “serious” hero, the cover model is often instructed to scrunch his forehead as if he’s taking one of those math exams that begin, “If two trains leave Pittsburg three hours apart and one is traveling 60 miles per hour….”

  4. MRyan says:

    I’m seeing Tim Riggins on the Pestilence cover.

  5. Elli says:

    Doctor O? At first I took the O for a tail whipping around.

  6. Merle says:

    On “Pestilence” I can’t get past the tiara inexplicably shaped like enormous metal eyebrows. Is this the bad armor version of a helmet? Also, his posture looks painful.

  7. Chillyjen says:

    Is it me, or after seeing so many freakishly elongated torsos via photoshop does War’s torso not seem a bit scrunched? Or maybe he just likes to wear his skirt thingy the way my grandpa wore his pants?

  8. Kit says:

    Is it possible to overdose on nipples?

  9. EC Spurlock says:

    I’m assuming Doctor O is there to provide the Big O for his female patients? Flashing back to the movie “Hysteria” here…

    #2 has seriously lost his love, he’s looking around down there trying to find the rest of her. Honestly, what kind of strange sex position were they trying for here? I cannot imagine any way this could work.

    I am very concerned about what kind of Pestilence he is spreading and how he is spreading it. We may have to alert the gynecological clinics. Also, is it just me or does War look like Karl Urban?

  10. BellaInAus says:

    Well, I think these covers tell a story. Dr O and Pestilence have both dropped buttons, which they can’t see because the buttons are the same colour as the floor and they aren’t wearing their glasses. War can’t decide if the movement on the horizon is trees moving in the wind or enemies coming over the hill, because he’s not wearing his glasses. And the reason these guys aren’t wearing their glasses is because Lost Love is an eye specialist whose been captured by Opthamalgia, goddess of blindness, and she’s using him as her sex slave as part of her plan to cover the world in blindness and so be worshipped by all.

    Flee Lost Love! Save the world from Opthamalgia! Save us all!

  11. MC says:

    I’m stuck on the missing earpiece of the stethoscope on Doctor O….

  12. pegs says:

    But have you SEEN Sarina Bowen’s new cover? For … Moonlighter? I think? I CANNOT figure out what those two nipple things are on the bottom left. That might need its own cover snark!

  13. DiscoDollyDeb says:

    @ pegs: it looks like some sort of gadget that someone is trying to connect to the other weird thing that might (or might not) be in the hero’s or the heroine’s hands. I’ve been disappoint with some of Bowen’s recent covers. The cover for SUPERFAN was just plain ugly—and you would never have known this was a book about a hockey player from looking at it.

  14. PamG says:

    Lost Love looks like a brides in the bath murder mystery. I understand that the technique is to yank the legs up and the victim can’t get purchase to get out of the tub. Voila! “Accidental” drowning!

  15. Barbara says:

    Zyva, are you looking for the Belly Fanny Pack?

  16. Zyva says:

    @Barbara, thanks for thinking of me, but no. I’m an over-the-shoulder girl, which was why mantitty/abs made more sense as bag deco.

    It was interesting to see the lingo difference, though. ‘Fanny packs’ are ‘bum bags’ in Australian English, as ‘fanny’ means, shall we say, Fanny Hill, not posterior. And apparently we call the belly ‘dad bod’ as well.

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