Cover design round-up: September 2017

Cover design round-up: September 2017

To September’s jacket designs of choice, a selection whittled quite substantially down from a fairly bumper publishing schedule as imprints line up their stocking-fillers. Thankfully there’s little by way of filler in this month’s cover stakes, with a number of exceptional canvases worth drawing your eye towards.

Particular Books’ release of Coralie Bickford-Smith’s The Worm and the Bird is likely the top-line, seeing as the designer’s previous title won pretty much every design award going. Oh, and it was a Waterstones Book of the Year too. The follow-up looks to be in the same vein, and judging by the number of imitators we’ve seen since The Fox and Star’s publication, that’s no bad thing.

Another prize-winning follow up – of sorts – comes in the shape of Peter Dyer’s take on Sarah Perry’s After Me Comes the Flood. Although it’s actually the precursor to the author’s multi-award-winning and very handsomely liveried The Essex Serpent, the reissued jacket is a fair departure from its original, presumably to align it with the ornate-with-gothic-undertones vibe.

Further shout-outs go to Jonathan Pelham, who leads the way with two compositions for 4th Estate, which heads the publisher stakes jointly with Faber (two apiece). And also to two very striking Macmillan titles: James Annal’s battily Saul Bass-y jacket for Hans Olav Lahlum’s The Anthill Murders, and Frances Hardinge’s A Skinful of Shadows, art directed by Rachel Vale and illustrated by Aitch. Lastly, and predictably, designer Paul Sahre’s art direction and design for Paul Sahre’s book about Paul Sahre is just excellent.

As ever, do let us know your favourites (and why), and you can follow our progress on our Instagram page, where these covers will be uploaded throughout September.



We begin with said designs by Jonathan Pelham, both to be issued by 4th Estate. They are for James Gleick’s Time Travel (which had a brilliant Peter Mendelsund cover in another life) and for Luke Kennard’s The Transition.



Next up is Paul Sahre’s design (and art direction) for his own memoir, Two-Dimensional Man, published in the UK by Abrams. It’s aside Allen Lane’s Riot Days by Maria Alyokhina, which was designed by Tom Etherington under the art direction of Jim Stoddart.



The Beast by Alexander Starritt (Apollo) was designed by gray318, while Kamila Shamsie’s Booker-longlisted Home Fire was designed and illustrated by Greg Heinimann. We caught up with Greg recently to discuss his work on Bloomsbury’s recently launched Classics list, which you can read about here.



E S Thomson’s Dark Asylum (Constable) was illustrated by Jordan Metcalf and art-directed by Tracey Winwood; next to it sits Egmont publication The Huntress: Sky by Sarah Driver, which was designed and art directed by Laura Bird, and illustrated by Joe McLaren.