Tag: Covers

The Amazing Book Covers of Kavalier and Clay

It has been 20 years since Michael Chabon’s legendary novel was published on September 19th, 2000. In that short time, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay has won a Pulitzer Prize, and many many other awards.

The book follows two cousins, Joe Kavalier and Sam Clay, as they reunite when Joe comes to America to escape Nazi Europe. The pair combine their skills, Joe the artist, and Sam the writer, to navigate the newfound world of comic books. It follows their careers, and intertwined love lives: Sam struggles with his queerness in a time when it wasn’t accepted and Joe falls in love with a woman he can’t have. Chabon lets readers into a world that is torn by war and patches it with the love and creative connection that the two cousins share.

It is incredible that in only 20 years the book has become a modern American classic. But, what is more incredible is the number of book covers that it has gone through.

There is a quote in the book that reads, “Forget about what you are escaping from. Reserve your anxiety for what you are escaping to.” Here are the TAAOKAC book covers. There are so many of them and they are all amazing. They say not to judge a book by its cover, but hopefully, after seeing these, TAAOKAC will be something you want to reserve your anxiety for and escape into.

Happy 20th.

1. The first edition published by Random House in 2000

image via amazon

2. The 2001 paperback edition with Houdini on the cover

image via goodreads

3. the post-Pulitzer edition in august 2001

image via goodreads

4. The Italian Edition in 2001

image via goodreads

5. the Swedish edition in 2002

image via goodreads

6. the german edition in 2004

image via goodreads

7. the french edition in 2004

image via goodreads

8. the Chinese edition in 2012

image via goodreads

9. the rebranding of all Chabon books to look this way in 2012

image via goodreads

10. the polish edition in 2019

image via goodreads

11. the new paperback edition in 2012

image via goodreads

12. the gorgeous limited edition illustrated edition that costs $135

image via the folio society

 

featured image via empireonline.com

Is It Okay to Judge a Book by Its Cover?

I have a confession to make: I judge books by their covers. I know, I know, it’s a cardinal sin⁠—but I can’t help it.  When I see a book with big shiny letters and a chiseled man toting a gun, I think spy novel. When I see two lovers clasping each other over a curly cue font, I think bawdy romance. When I see an artsy photo with minimalist typeface, I think indie novel.

 

Heart of Darkness

Image via amazon

 

A good cover hints at what to expect from a book. It is, effectively, a marketing tool. But it’s also much more than that. The cover of a book can affect the way you read it. When I read Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, for example, I was haunted by the emaciated figure on the book’s jacket. The cover stuck with me throughout my reading, and I came to associate the plot with this disturbing image.

 

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

image via amazon

 

Think about the first Harry Potter book (the US edition). Many fans of the series fell in love with that scruffy haired wizard on the cover as they pictured him embarking on his adventures. Book jackets can be visual aids to the reader, and they can also be cultural touchstones. If I were to ask you to visualize The Catcher in The Rye, chances are the iconic image of the red carousel horse on the front cover would pop up in your head. This cover draws special attention to The Catcher in The Rye’s climactic scene and encapsulates the novel’s loss of innocence theme. It comes to represent the story as a whole.

 

The Catcher in the Rye

image via goodreads

 

A book’s cover shouldn’t be disregarded as a marketing tool. It is, effectively, part of the book itself. By no means does a cover reflect the quality of writing found in a book, but, whether we like it or not, it does change the way we read it.

 

 

 

Featured Image Via Get Literary

image

7 Beloved Book Jackets Get the GIF Treatment

When Chilean artist Javier Jensen decided to take a break from his day job as an art director for a publicity firm, he wanted to channel the time into his passion for books. Through some clever artwork and GIF wizardry, Jensen took seven iconic book covers and turned them into the living, breathing worlds we always dreamed of.

From the subtlety of blinking Seuss character’s eyes to the grandeur of Tolkien’s soaring Great Eagles, we think these images are incredibly immersive. Check out all of the covers below. If you love them as much as we do, check out the rest of Jensen’s work here.  

 

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

 

 

Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss

 

German Sunday School Hymn Book 

 Moby Dick by Herman Melville

 

The Adventures and Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 

 

The Little Prince (Le Petit Prince) by Antoine de Saint-Exupery

 

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien 

 

All images courtesy of The Guardian