Author: Matthew Goodman
Publisher: Schiffer Publishing
Genre: Non-Fiction, Coffee Table
Release Date: February 28th 2016
Format: NetGalley ARC
Page Count: 224
Firstly, I would like to thank Schiffer Publishing and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC of this book for an honest review.
As a graphic designer, I have a major issue when it comes to judging books by their covers…I just can’t help it. It’s instilled in my brain to pick books based on their aesthetic appeal and I know that the saying tells you never to do that, but I mean some books are just so damn beautiful! There are literally moments where I have picked up and purchased a book that I already own just because the cover is nicer. I’m not kidding. I get judged pretty hard for that, but I really don’t care. If a book is pretty, I want it.
Being a graphic designer and a massive book worm made this book feel like the best of both worlds for me. I got to look at beautifully designed books and learn about the wonderful artists behind them. It was so cool to see where some of the books that I bought on a whim based on their covers alone came from. I think the best part about this whole book is that the artists are gaining the recognition they deserve. As a graphic designer, I know all too well that we don’t always get visible credit for the things we design. That’s just how it is. We don’t get to sign our names on our artwork like painters or illustrators have the opportunity to do.
I would definitely pick up a hard copy of this book as it would make an excellent coffee table piece. It is also a great reference for inspiration and research into some wonderful graphic designers and illustrators, making it perfect for a creative such as myself! Going through this book made me want to pick up and purchase so many more books that I had never heard of before purely based on their design.
There were a few artists that stood out to me, either because I have read the book they designed the cover for, or I had seen it on a shelf. I was attracted to others purely based on their design style alone. I’m going to quickly highlight a few artists that stood out to me and the covers that they worked on!
Charlotte Strick – The Night Guest, Southern Reach Trilogy
Charlotte Strick designed the cover for The Night Guest, a book that I constantly see at the bookstore. I have no idea what it’s about, but the cover always grabs my attention. She also designed the covers for the Southern Reach trilogy which I once even highlighted as being some of my favourite book covers in a previous blog post!
Connie Gabert – Ghost Boy, The Walls Around Us
I haven’t read either of these two books that Connie Gabert has designed, but I constantly see them at book stores and their covers were probably the main reason I added them to my TBR list!
David High – The Smoke Gets In Your Eyes
I have wanted to read The Smoke Gets In Your Eyes for quite a long time now. I remember seeing this cover for the first time in an issue of Entertainment Weekly and it has been on my TBR ever since!
Jim Tierney – Boundless, My True Love Gave To Me
Jim Tierney’s work is probably my favourite throughout this entire collection. His style is very appealing to me personally, especially the way they he treats typography and incorporates a flat design style. I’m in love with these covers!
Nathan Burton – Pleasures & Landscapes, Beggar and the Hare
Nathan Burton’s style is another one of my favourites! Absolutely beautiful and mostly for the same reasons as listed above for Jim Tierney. Just great typography and overall design style!
Paul Buckley – Kerouac Collection
I recently went on a Beat Generation binge and picked up a copy of On The Road by Jack Kerouac. Now, let me tell you, there are SO MANY cover variations for this novel. I picked up the one by Paul Buckley. My main reason for doing so is that I’m super picky and I like my books to match. I noticed that there were identical covers in terms of design style for other novels by Kerouac that looked the same as the copy of On The Road that I chose, that way when I decide to purchase more from Kerouac, they will all match!
Steve Attardo – The Bees, Post Office
I’ve seen these covers countless times at book stores or thrift shops and they stand out to me every time! I have yet to read either of the two shown above, but I really do want to soon!
Will Staehle – A Darker Shade of Magic
Who doesn’t love the cover of A Darker Shade of Magic? I mean, it’s beautiful. Almost everyone who talks about this novel always mentions the cover. I have read this novel and I will say that the cover definitely does a great job of telling a visual summary of what the book is all about!