Once summer evening I was walking with some friends across the Plateau and we came across a box of old books that someone had discarded on the street. For some reason, we started a little game where each of us would pick out a book and then try to guess the year by looking only at the cover. It was actually pretty easy and I had some kind of knack for it. Generally I got my books right on the nose or within just a year or two of publication. And when everyone seemed impressed I couldn't really articulate what it was about the design exactly (the colors? the font styles?) which clued me in.
|Gabe Foreman's A Complete Encyclopedia of Different Kinds of People|
|J.D. Salinger: Franny and Zooey|
Recently I came across this cover from an online post about re-imagined book covers. I really find this one interesting and it represents a real shift. For so long, book covers seemed to be more about just titles and text rather than details from the story but this one clearly bucks that trend.
|J.D.Salinger: Franny and Zooey|
I tend to be the kind of reader who, when I am really enjoying the book, will stop every few pages or so and flip the book around, really examine the book cover and read every single thing on the cover again and again as I consider what I'm reading. The cover becomes an intimate part of the experience of reading the book and like the J.D. Salinger cover above, become intertwined with my experience of reading it. All it takes is for me to find an old edition of a book I once read to recall a thousand details: where I read it, where I was living at the time, what the weather was like, etc.
|A Folio edition: Jean-Jacques Schuhl:
Entrée des fantômes
|J.D. Salinger: The Catcher in the Rye|
|George Orwell: 1984|