Ace On Sunday #3

Ace Double Header

It’s been great to start this series on such a high note with titles from Philip K. Dick and John Brunner but this Sunday it’s time to return to the Ace Doubles shelf in my library and select a brand new volume. I decided not to make an informed choice on this occasion and simply pulled out the first book that came to hand, serial number D-497. Today’s novel then is Wandl The Invader by Ray Cummings and has the following tagline;

A new planet menaces the solar system

The cover art features a hilarious yet fantastic painting by Ed Valigursky which somehow manages to land on the right side of kitsch. A startled young blonde clad in wonderfully retro-futuristic garb presses herself against the wall as a strange alien figure approaches. The extraterrestrial being itself is a spherical pink mass with stubby legs, tentacular arms and yellow eyes protruding on stalks. This is most definitely a cover of its time when illustrators pushed at the boundaries of their imaginations when faced with visualising what creatures from other worlds might look like.

It’s time to look past that nifty cover art and settle myself in for a good read, join me here again next Sunday to find out what lies on the other side of this Ace Double. Drop me a comment if you enjoyed this selection or let me know if you have a favourite cover featuring a rendition of some weird alien lifeform.

Wandl The Invader by Ray Cummings
(Serial Number D-497)
This version was published in 1961 by Ace Books
The cover artist is Ed Valigursky

Wandl The Invader by Ray Cummings


7 thoughts on “Ace On Sunday #3

  1. John C Nash 24/01/2016 / 9:46 pm

    Wow! That’s a bit of a special cover. I think we can all learn from this, to colour coordinate your catsuit with Wandl whenever he comes to visit. I mean invade.

    Liked by 2 people

    • unsubscriber 26/01/2016 / 6:46 pm

      Glad you enjoyed this particular little oddly Mr Nash. I find that it’s always a good idea to dress accordingly in such situations as to clash with ones alien visitor/overlord can be a terrible faux pas and damage any potential relationship. This is why I always carry a pocket full of different coloured cravats with me at all times to ensure such a thing never happens. All the best as ever my friend.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Guy 26/01/2016 / 2:22 am

    Hi I enjoyed the Brunner from last week, I thought he did a great job by adding nice twists to the rather threadbare themes of rebellion against the galactic empire and warriors/soldiers transferred
    in time or space to save the day. Also the aliens at the end were a nice touch. I raced to my shelves when I saw your choice for this week and was delighted to see I had it. I love the Ed Valigursky cover, i would have expected a robot, but a pink beachball with eye stalks is pretty scary I am looking forward to reading it, Cummings can be a bit old school but he is normally enjoyable. I think my favourite Ed Valigursky cover is for ACE’s books Conquest of the Space Sea.

    Happy Reading

    Liked by 2 people

    • unsubscriber 26/01/2016 / 6:54 pm

      Thanks for your comments Guy, I’m glad to have you along so far as a reading partner of sorts. I too found last week’s Brunner title a great read and couldn’t help thinking that these odd little double volumes get far more derision than is fair in most cases. I was pleased to hear that you also had this week’s pick in your library too, I wonder how many more novels we will share during this series. I really love the cover for Wandl, the alien is one of those classically fantastical creations that proliferated in SF before the rather boring and dull image of the ‘grey’ took hold in the public consciousness. Hope to see you next week for more Ace Double fun, all the best.


  3. lcmt 29/01/2016 / 5:09 am

    The caption “A New Planet Menaces the Solar System” is sabotaged by all that pink and the fair lady’s adorable turned-up toes on her shoes. Even the name “Wandl” is cute. This is one of the best of your covers for delightful incongruity.

    Liked by 1 person

    • unsubscriber 30/01/2016 / 9:28 am

      Thanks for your kind words Lin, I’m so pleased to hear that you enjoyed this cover as much as I did. I suspect it will be a tough act to follow but there will definitely be lots more to come over the year. All the best as always x

      Liked by 1 person

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