Quest of the Three Worlds by Cordwainer Smith

Quest of the Three Worlds by Cordwainer Smith

Quest of the Three Worlds is a science-fiction fix-up novel by Cordwainer Smith. The book is comprised of four stories about Cashel O’Neill, an adventurer with an all-world travel pass. While the novel was published in 1966, the stories within the book were published between 1963 and 1965.

Cordwainer Smith, whose real name was Paul Linebarger, was known for his unusual writing style. Linebarger was an East Asian scholar, and his novels were heavily inspired by traditional Chinese fiction. Most of his stories are set more than 14,000 years in the future, giving them a strange otherworldly quality.

Quest of the Three Worlds by Cordwainer Smith

The man-faced tiger you see here is the work of artist Michael Herring, who created this cover for Ballantine in 1978. Herring frequently partnered with Ballantine, providing art for books like The Blue Hawk by Peter Dickinson and The Silver Eggheads by Fritz Leiber. Ballantine also had Herring create new covers for all of L. Frank Baum’s Oz books.

Although Herring created many covers for science fiction and fantasy novels, he may be best known for his work on the post-apocalyptic Deathlands series. He was the exclusive cover artist for the series for more than 20 years, creating over 100 covers in total. While Herring has since retired, he occasionally writes articles for publications like The Baum Bugle.