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Alien: Covenant (novel)

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Alien Covenant novel
Alien: Covenant
Author(s) Alan Dean Foster
Publisher Titan Books
Release date(s) May 23, 2017
Media type Paperback
Pages 352
Cover by
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Alien: Covenant is a 2017 novelization of the film of the same name, written by Alan Dean Foster and published by Titan Books. It was released on May 23, 2017.[1]

As well as standard print editions, the novel was also released in audiobook format, read by actor Tom Taylorson and published by Blackstone Audio, Inc..

According to Foster, the book contains "some unique original material... An unusual approach that's never been tried before in a novelization".[2] Foster is also writing Alien: Covenant - Origins, an official prequel set before the film.

Publisher's SummaryEdit

Ridley Scott returns to the universe he created, with Alien: Covenant, a new chapter in his groundbreaking Alien adventure. The crew of the colony ship Covenant, bound for a remote planet on the far side of the galaxy, discovers what they think is an uncharted paradise. But it is actually a dark, dangerous world.

When they uncover a threat beyond their imaginations, they must attempts a harrowing escape.

Differences from the FilmEdit

Differences between the novel and the film include:

  • The opening scene between Weyland and David is extended; David additionally notes a spider's web in the room where he activates. He also identifies a piece of art as The Nativity by Piero della Francesca.[3] As David plays "Entry of the Gods into Valhalla" on the piano, Weyland recounts the story of Wagner's accompanying musical drama, which ends with David labelling the deities in the story "false gods".[4]
  • Following David's activation, a new scene shows Daniels and Branson in their apartment, where Branson discusses some changes he has made to the plans for their log cabin on Origae-6.[5] The scene is ultimately revealed to be a flashback/dream that Daniels is having while in hypersleep aboard the Covenant. The sequence was filmed for the movie but not used.
  • When Walter checks the embryos in storage aboard the Covenant, they are all healthy in the novel, whereas in the film one of the embryos has failed, leading Walter to remove it for disposal.[6]
  • Before the neutrino burst hits the Covenant, Walter additionally visits the ship's hydroponics lab to check on the various flora being grown there.[7]
  • Mother is considerably more personable in the novel, striking up conversations with Walter using a more informal tone.[7]
  • After the post-disaster meeting on the bridge concludes, Oram takes Daniels to one side to offer her his condolences and pay his respects to Branson. He then orders her to take several days off to deal with her grief, much to her consternation.[8] In the film, Oram makes no attempts to stop Daniels getting straight back to work.
  • Oram carries a pair of metal worry beads that he frequently fiddles with when stressed.[8]
  • Tennessee and Ankor start making their repairs outside the ship much earlier in the book, before Branson's funeral, and these repairs generally seem to be much more extensive than in the film — for instance, it takes two shifts rather than just the one as in the movie.[9] Only on the second trip out does Tennessee intercept the transmission.
  • Daniels does not watch the video of Branson climbing when she retires to her quarters, but she does glance at their climbing gear stored in a cupboard, brought along so they could climb on Origae-6.[10] The scene also goes on longer at the end — Walter arrives and presents Daniels with a gift of several joints that he has rolled using cannabis grown in the hydroponics bay, suggesting it will help calm her. Learning that Daniels simply wishes to get back to work as part of her grieving process, Walter suggests she check the equipment in the terraforming bay, pointing out that there are no security cameras in there and so Oram will not discover she has disobeyed his orders.[11]
  • None of the equipment in the bay has shifted when Daniels and Walter check it, wheres in the film some of it has come loose and they have to tighten the restraints to secure it.[12]
  • In the finished film, Daniels tells Walter about Branson's dream of a cabin on Origae-6 as they work underneath some of the machinery, but in the novel the conversation happens as they walk around the bay, checking over the equipment.[13]
  • Branson's body is ejected in a coffin in the book, whereas it is simply wrapped in a shroud in the film.[14]
  • When discussing his nascent captaincy with his wife Karine, Oram does not talk about how his religion means he is viewed negatively by Weyland-Yutani. After she leaves, he prays alone on the bridge.[15]
  • Following Branson's funeral, Daniels gets drunk alone in her cabin, listening to Nat King Cole on Branson's antique record player.[16] Only now does she view the climbing video, seen earlier in the actual film. Having done so, she packs away all of Branson's belongings for disposal or storage.[17]
  • While watching Shaw's garbled transmission on the bridge, Oram likens the indecipherable screeching to his memories of people "speaking in tongues" during services as part of his strict Pentecostal upbringing. Inspired by this, he has Mother reverse the audio, and only then is the tune hidden within the signal revealed.[18] In the film, the tune is simply apparent from the start.
  • The conversation between Daniels and Oram where she voices her concerns to the captain over their change of course does not happen while they are alone, but on the bridge (albeit still out of earshot of the rest of the crew).[19]
  • As the Covenant approaches Planet 4, Upworth still receives Shaw's transmission. Tennessee forebodingly likens it to the song of the sirens in Homer's Odyssey, luring sailors to their doom.[20]
  • During the descent in Lander One, Walter also sits in the cockpit.[21] In the film only Faris and Oram occupy the dropship's cockpit.
  • During the rough descent, Oram loses one of his worry beads and it begins rolling around the cabin.[22]
  • The dropship strikes something beneath the water as it sets down and Faris is forced to reposition it.[23] It is the exterior damage caused by this impact that Faris later goes outside to repair, whereas in the film she is apparently outside trying to boost the strength of the vessel's transmitter, so they can contact the Covenant.
  • After landing, the crew remain aboard Lander One while Walter heads out alone to sample the atmosphere. Only after he determines that it is safe do the crew disembark.[24]
  • David's laboratory contains a deceased Xenomorph Ovomorph created by the Engineers, which he was trying to replicate by creating his own version of the Xenomorphs through hybridizing Neomorphs.
  • As in an earlier version of the film's script, the Neomorph spawned from Tom Hallett survives the battle in the wheat field and returns to attack the Xenomorph spawned from Christopher Oram, being killed by it after a brief fight.
  • Daniels does not realize that David has replaced Walter before going into hypersleep.


Blackstone Audio, Inc. produced an unabridged audiobook of Alan Dean Foster's novelization, read by actor Tom Taylorson. The audiobook runs for 8 hours and was released on the same day as the print edition.


See AlsoEdit


  1. " - Alien: Covenant - The Official Movie Novelization". Retrieved on 2017-04-06.
  2. "AVPGalaxy - Alan Dean Foster to Pen Alien: Covenant Novelization!". Retrieved on 2016-09-29.
  3. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 10 (2017), Titan Books.
  4. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 13 (2017), Titan Books.
  5. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 19 (2017), Titan Books.
  6. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 23 (2017), Titan Books.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 25 (2017), Titan Books.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 46 (2017), Titan Books.
  9. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 47 (2017), Titan Books.
  10. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 53 (2017), Titan Books.
  11. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 55 (2017), Titan Books.
  12. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 56 (2017), Titan Books.
  13. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 57 (2017), Titan Books.
  14. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 61 (2017), Titan Books.
  15. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 66 (2017), Titan Books.
  16. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 67 (2017), Titan Books.
  17. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 68 (2017), Titan Books.
  18. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 78 (2017), Titan Books.
  19. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 85 (2017), Titan Books.
  20. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 92 (2017), Titan Books.
  21. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 95 (2017), Titan Books.
  22. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 102 (2017), Titan Books.
  23. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 105 (2017), Titan Books.
  24. Alan Dean Foster. Alien: Covenant, p. 108 (2017), Titan Books.