Destiny Doll by Clifford D. Simak

Destiny Doll by Clifford D. Simak

Originally published in 1971, Destiny Doll is science fiction novel by three-time Hugo Award winner Clifford D. Simak. Destiny Doll features four misfits — a big game hunter, a blind old man, a beggar, and an ace pilot — as they explore the far reaches of space. Along the way, they meet gnomes, sentient hobby horses, and the titular doll of destiny.

While this book failed to win any awards, Simak was a celebrated author of speculative fiction. In addition to his Hugos, the Science Fiction Writers of America named him as their third Grand Master, following Robert Heinlein and Jack Williamson. He was also an inaugural winner of the Bram Stoker Award for Lifetime Achievement.

Destiny Doll by Clifford D. Simak

Destiny Doll has been translated into Dutch, Italian, Serbian, French, and Portuguese. The novel was serialized in Worlds of Fantasy in 1971, and the book has been reprinted on many occasions. The most recent edition was published in 2013.

This cover comes from the novel’s first paperback edition, which was released by Berkley Medallion in 1972. The cover art — which is unsigned and uncredited — is reminiscent of the John Holmes cover for Vladimir Nabokov’s Despair. It’s possible that the woman holding the mirror is meant to be one of the book’s characters, game hunter Sara Foster; Foster is described as having red hair.