Judging A Book By Its Cover: Clockwork Century Series

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I have purchased special editions of books or multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

I borrowed Boneshaker from the library some time ago and shortly thereafter purchased the entire Clockwork Century series. I’ve yet to read any of the other books (surprising no one), but perhaps I will this year! They’re lovely editions to my shelves nevertheless, though it does bother me to no end that Clementine doesn’t match the rest of the series. For whatever reason, this story wasn’t picked up by Tor, so it does ruin the effect slightly. However there’s nothing I can do, so I try not to think about it too much.

Here are the details – despite two different cover artists, I think the art styles do resemble each other enough to make the books match, part of this is possibly because the design is all done by the same artist:

Boneshaker – cover art by Jon Foster and cover design by Jamie Stafford-Hill, Tor 2009, ISBN: 9780765318411
Clementine – cover art by Jon Foster, Subterranean Press 2010, ISBN: 9781596064959
Dreadnought – cover art by Jon Foster and cover design by Jamie Stafford-Hill, Tor 2010, ISBN: 9780765325785
Ganymede – cover art by Jon Foster and cover design by Jamie Stafford-Hill, Tor 2011, ISBN: 9780765329462
The Inexplicables – cover art by Cliff Nielsen and cover design by Jamie Stafford-Hill, Tor 2012, ISBN: 9780765329479
Fiddlehead – cover art by Cliff Nielsen and cover design by Jamie Stafford-Hill, Tor 2013, ISBN: 9780765334077

Judging A Book By Its Cover: The Night Circus

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I have purchased special editions of books or multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

I already owned a copy of The Night Circus (which I’ve actually read and absolutely loved) but when I saw one of my Instagram buddies tweeting about this Vintage Classics copy…well…we know it doesn’t take much to convince me to buy a pretty book!

My new copy is on the left, published in 2016 with a cover illustration by Kate Forrester (whose work is awesome) ISBN: 9781784871055. As with my anniversary edition of Locke Lamora, I wish this edition had a few more special features on the interior, like illustrations.

My original copy is on the right, a 2011 First Anchor Books edition with silhouettes by Vania Zouravliov and tent by Helen Musselwhite, ISBN: 9780307744432.

Judging A Book By Its Cover: Vixen

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I have purchased special editions of books or multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

Vixen was a book that caught my eye somewhere on Instagram, so I decided to pick it up. The cover is lovely (though I might have seen a different edition first, can’t recall) and it’s that sort of matte/soft material. Fun to touch but the black does show fingerprints, which is a bummer. But there’s a map inside! The cover art is by Lindsey Carr (you can even buy her work on Etsy) and it’s a 2014, Borough Press edition, ISBN: 9780007492800.

Judging A Book By Its Cover: The Lies of Locke Lamora

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I have purchased special editions of books or multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

I fell in love with The Lies of Locke Lamora at about page ten, so when I found out there was a 10th anniversary edition, I had to have it. A little new years gift to myself, why not? This is a lovely edition, though I will say, they could have gone a little further with the design. The cover is lovely but there’s a tower behind the banner that is nearly invisible. I can just barely see it in this picture but that’s because I know it’s here. In person it’s just as hard to see. There’s also no interior art, and I would have loved some chapter embellishments or drop caps. A ribbon bookmark would be nice too. However, if you’re a big fan of the book I still recommend this edition. This was published by Gollancz in 2016 with cover art by us-now.com, ISBN: 9781473216792.

Also pictured is my “regular” copy of Locke which is from 2013 and published by Del Rey, with cover art by Daniel Dociu (his portfolio is amazing) and design by Dreu Pennington-McNeil, ISBN: 9780553588941.

In this picture you can sort of see the tower…

Judging A Book By Its Cover: Pride and Prejudice (XIII)

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I have purchased special editions of books or multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

Both of these editions were given to me as gifts when a friend of mine went to England! I’d never seen either cover before, so it was a nice surprise. On the left is the 2007 Wordsworth edition with cover art by Nathan Clair, ISBN: 9781853260001. The right is the 2016 Alma Classics with a cover design by Nathan Burton, ISBN: 9781847493699.

Judging A Book By Its Cover: The Compleat Ankh-Morpork

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I have purchased special editions of books or multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

My friend bought me this for Christmas and it was a wonderful surprise because I didn’t know it existed! I’ve only read two Discworld books (shame on me) though I’m doing a good job of collecting them and I am in love with Rincewind and Luggage. This guide looks super cool and even if I weren’t into the series, I’d appreciate it for the design and attention to detail alone. Also it contains a map that’s practically bigger than me! I can’t wait to dive into this. This book has “additional illustrations” (whatever that means) by Peter Dennis and was published in 2012 by Doubleday. ISBN: 9780385538237.

Judging A Book By Its Cover: Shikanoko Series

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I have purchased special editions of books or multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

This series by Lian Hearn would certainly be on my top whatever list of most gorgeous sets I own, if ever I made such a list.  I love the colors and I especially love the way the spines coordinate. My Sweetbeeps bought me the first book as a wedding gift (and I actually read it on our honeymoon rather than consign it to my massive TBR like I did with the remaining three books). All the books have cover art by Yuko Shimizu and an overall design by Alex Merto. All four books were released in 2016 (which is awesome) by Farrar, Straus & Giroux. Emperor of the Eight Islands – ISBN: 9780374536312, Autumn Princess, Dragon Child – ISBN: 9780374536329, Lord of the Darkwood – ISBN: 9780374536336, The Tengu’s Game of Go – ISBN: 9780374536343.

Judging A Book By Its Cover: Jane Austen Omnibus

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I have purchased special editions of books or multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

This gorgeous, incredibly heavy, Jane Austen omnibus was a gift from a friend (who blogs about Star Wars, upcoming movies and other nerdy things if you’re interested) and I love the simple, elegant cover design. This is the 2012 Race Point Publishing edition. Cover and slipcase designed by Ziga Media and an introduction by Jennifer C. Garlen. It contains all Austen’s novels, plus Lady Susan and some extras. ISBN: 9781937994181. Some photos also feature my adorable page flags by Girl of All Work.

Judging A Book By Its Cover: Charles de Lint

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I have purchased special editions of books or multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

Here I have three of my (vast collection of) Charles de Lint books – these are all illustrated by John Jude Palencar and I love his art style to pieces. Fun fact, Onion Girl was the first de Lint book I read and I recall it was the cover that first caught my eye in the library, followed by the strange title. If you’re looking for urban fantasy, I can’t recommend de Lint and his world, Newford, highly enough. You might be surprised to find I’ve read two of these three books! xD They’re all published by Tor. Onion Girl – 2001, ISBN: 9780765303813, Forests of the Heart – 2000, ISBN: 0312875681, The Mystery of Grace – 2009, ISBN: 9780765317568.

Judging A Book By Its Cover: Vintage Books

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I have purchased special editions of books or multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

These two lovelies are part of my vintage collection, Modern Authorship being a gift from a friend and…well, I don’t remember where Raub’s English Grammar came from – perhaps my grandmother’s old books. Modern Authorship was published in 1924 apparently as a special issue for the Palmer Institute of Authorship. Raub’s was published in 1880 in Porter & Coats also for the use of schools and “private students.”