Monday, 2 June 2008

Covers Containing Covers

I just stumbled across a review of a promising-sounding book called Harry, Revised by Mark Sarvas. Sometimes when this happens I forget about the book soon afterwards, while at other times I scribble down the name and author, determined to order it. Harry, Revised falls into the second category. What made the difference? The cover, by Jonathan 'gray318' Gray.

When I first saw this I knew that I knew that torn cover, and the design was a giveaway that it was one of the older Penguin Classics. Some determined hunting round turned up this:

Success! I think this works really well. The image in the painting, by the way, is a self-portrait by Jacques-Louis David.

UPDATE: Apparently The Count of Monte Cristo is relevant to the plot of Harry, Revised, so that explains that.

It reminded me of another cover which was cleverly created from a different book's cover. This was Frank Portman's hilarious King Dork, about the tribulations of high school and music fandom, which looked like this...

..because the protagonist is incessantly being told to read The Catcher in the Rye, which he hates, by every authority figure in his life.


John Self said...

Very interesting,as gray318's stuff always is. I suppose one could call these covers palimpsests, which is appropriate given the link to another (quite extraordinary) example: the cover of the Swedish edition of Aleksandr Hemon's Nowhere Man.
Harry, Revised looks interesting. Must check out.

JRSM said...

That 'Nowhere Man' cover is bizarre! Thank you for pointing it out: I've never seen the like.

Kylie said...

The effect of the Harry, Revised cover is slightly ruined by the big yellow 'A Novel' sticker slapped on the front. No, really? I didn't realise it was a novel.

JRSM said...

Yes, perhaps it might have been better moved so that it was on the cover-in-the-cover instead.