Cover design round-up: January 2017

Cover design round-up: January 2017

Among the highlights in January's selection are a number of covers either directly lifted from archaic editions, or with more than a passing resemblance to liveries of yesteryear; a smattering of fabulous full-bleed illustration; and a number of titles in garish colour palettes that are sure to brighten even the bleakest of days. As ever, let us know your favourites and do share your favourites from our Instagram page, where these will be uploaded throughout the month.



The first two titles are from HarperCollins list 4th Estate; Emergency Admissions: Memoirs of an Ambulance Driver by Kit Wharton was designed in-house by Jonathan Pelham, and Ian Samson's Essex Poison was pulled together by HC's deputy art director Jo Walker.



There was a third title from 4th Estate that caught our eye, too: Michael Chabon's Moonglow has repurposed its striking US livery, which was designed by Adalis Martinez. Age of Anger by Pankaj Mishra is a colourful mash-up from Allen Lane, created by Penguin designer Matthew Young.



Big Picture Press' Infographics... was art-directed by Carly Blake, with the illustrations coming courtesy of South African design outfit Studio Muti. And Bloomsbury Sigma's pixellated Electronic Dreams, written by Tom Lean, was designed by Alison Tutton Robins.



Canongate's Canons series has a new and rather handsome addition in the shape of The Weatherhouse by Nan Shepherd: in the words of senior designer Peter Adlington, "we have no idea who designed that, it's the art from the first edition", and an attempt to identify the originator was unsuccessful. (Answers on a postcard!) Once Upon a Time in the East by Xiaolu Guo (Chatto & Windus) was designed by Suzanne Dean, using a photograph of Robin Friend's.



As with the Canons title, HarperCollins' Detective Club issue The Conjure-Man Dies uses archival artwork for its new release. It was resurrected by freelance artworker Cliff Webb, and you can read about Webb's processes on HarperCollins' design blog. The Bear and Nightingale by Katherine Arden (Del Rey) was a collaboration between illustrator Aitch and design agency Head Design.



Faber & Faber's Welcome to Lagos, written by Chibundu Onuzo, uses a lavish illustration by Bill Bragg across the front cover, spine, and reverse. Art direction came from Faber's senior designer Eleanor Crow. And Gollancz's The Massacre of Mankind, from the pen of Stephen Baxter, was composed by external book-design studio Blacksheep.



Chinelo Okparanta's Under the Udala Trees (Granta) features origami-style foliage and fruit, with the title's letters cut out. The artwork was designed and executed by Sinem Erkas. Harvill Secker's release The Traitor's Niche by Ismail Kadare was designed in-house by Matthew Broughton.



Head of Zeus publication Stiletto, by Daniel O'Malley, had its jacket designed by freelance designer Anna Morrison. And Ottessa Moshfegh's Homesick for Another World makes use of a black and white photograph from Matt Black, who in 2014 was named TIME's Instagram photographer of the year. The design was by Suzanne Dean (see above).



We haven't yet featured Penguin's new livery for its Modern Poets series, which is designed by Tom Etherington and overseen by Jim Stoddart. At the time of the list's launch, Etherington told The Bookseller: "The design of the Modern Poets strikes a balance between the reductive simplicity synonymous with Penguin covers and a friendly colourful feel that reflects the series’ ambition to be poetry that can be enjoyed by everybody." In rather stark contrast is Picador's Little Deaths, penned by Emma Flint and designed in-house by Justine Anweiler.



Another Picador January issue, The Nix by Nathan Hill, was designed by Oliver Munday; Portobello Books' Swallowing Mercury, written by Wioletta Greg, uses the illustration of Tom Frost. The cover was designed by David Pearson.