Thursday, January 10, 2019

It could be worse . . . except when it couldn't.


It's nearly eleven o'clock in the morning on the west coast and I've just realised I haven't blogged on my allotted day. What a typical start to a new year.

So here's a word-light, pic-heavy look at some book jackets. Forgive me.

I do pay attention to book jackets. I like a waxy or sugar-almond finish - not shiny - and I've got a soft-spot for a jacket where the design is almost all in the font. Like this recent addition to my TBR pile:

Isn't it lovely? It's about an agony aunt during WWII, so I've got premise envy as well as jacket hankering.

Another recent purchase was a new copy of a book I've owned for decades. They re-issued it and, just like that, Georgette Heyer's Footsteps in The Dark has gone from being one of the ugliest volumes in my collection to one of the prettiest.

Another great improvement - in my opinion - came with the recent re-issue of Dorothy L Sayers. Her books had a hard time in the seventies (like architecture, home furnishings and hair-dos) but Hodder's recent re-vamp is gorgeous.

Sometimes, I've pondered the different covers of my own books in different countries, wondering what it is that leads British and American publishers to such distinct looks:

Is that the same woman? Dunno. I like her boots, though. On the whole, no matter what I think, I go along with the jacket the art department comes up with. They know best what works, what sells, what those boots say to readers. Once, early on, I said of a jacket that I liked the colours but really didn't think anything else was related to the story. Guess what happened. They changed the colours and kept the rest.

And once quite recently, I actually put my foot down. Well, my agent put her foot down. Consider the following:

It's the Turkish edition of The Child Garden. And this is the jacket we agreed to once we'd lifted our feet again. It's not my favourite ever. The two heads on top of one another and the moon above seem oddly placed and I've no idea who those two women are. But it was a joy to behold after the first suggestion. Now, I don't know anything about the Turkish book world, or Turkish aesthetics in general, but I knew what I thought when I saw this:

If anyone's read The Child Garden and can tell me who that is, I'd still love to know.


Susan C Shea said...

Laughing my head off at the first version of the Turkish cover of The Child's Garden! It is both frightening and hilarious, no small accomplishment. You may note that I chose The Winter Garden cover as a favorite in spite of the fact that the horsey thing at the top bothered you. After I read the book, I was okay with it even though the figure...well, I won't issue a spoiler.

Cathy Ace said...

The original Turkish cover? You know this is unusual for me...words fail me.

Kathy Reel said...

I love covers and often buy both the U.S. and UK copies for their different covers. I have Dear Mrs. Bird (unfortunately not read yet)in a different cover from yours here, Catriona, and I really do love its colors and title in typewriter keys, but I also love the simplicity of the one you've posted here. I think I'm going to have to order the Georgette Heyer book from Book Depository. It wasn't available at Amazon U.S. And, talking about covers, your covers are always outstanding, Catriona. Well, the U.S. and UK ones. Maybe the Turkish one is a no go. Hahaha!