Friday, 10 October 2008

Things!

A few things prompted by the newest Penguin Classics catalogue...

First, here's the upcoming new edition of one of this blog's favourite books, The Death of Grass.



In the same catalogue, there's also a new edition of Harry Harrison's science-fiction classic of overpopulation, Make Room! Make Room!, with a groovy cover.



However, given the theme, it's not quite as effective as this dramatic US Orb Classic edition from earlier this year.



Among the other books I already know I MUST HAVE in said catalogue, comes a new translation by the brilliant Michael Hofmann (of whom I've previously, accurately, remarked that you could read anything he translates and be assured of very high quality) of Hans Fallada's Alone in Berlin.



This same translation is being released in the US by the fine small press Melville House as Every Man Dies Alone.



Melville House also have two other Fallada books scheduled for 2009--The Drinker and Little Man, What Now?--with very attractive, simple cover designs.


13 comments:

Lucy Fishwife said...

Given that "Make Room! Make Room!" was filmed as "Soylent Green", surely an Andy Warhol-style soup can would be a great if macabre cover?

Ian Brian Shimkoviak said...

I like the Make Room one the best. The last two are nice as well if they are really printed on that card stock.

Kylie said...

Ooh, I hadn't realised that Make Room! Make Room! was being re-released by Penguin. I've been after this book recently. Perfect timing!

JRSM said...

Yes, I'd been planning on getting it too. The 'Soylent Green' cover idea would be good, although the Soylent-Green-being-made-of-people idea is from the film, not the book.

And yes, I'm really hoping that card stock is what will be used for the Fallada covers, rather than the texture being printed on. Melville House have done some really nice stuff in the past, so the odds are good!

John Self said...

Excellent - I hadn't seen the Christopher cover yet. Biggie for me in the upcoming Penguins is James Salter's Solo Faces, out next month. I'm scrounging a review copy and hope to write about it before then.

I have never heard of Hans Fallada. Should I have?

JRSM said...

You lucky bugger! I'm very much looking forward to 'Solo Faces': I loved his other books.

Fallada is one of those writers who keeps popping up on various bring-these-books-back-into-print lists ('The Drinker' especially), so it's very nice to see it finally happening.

John Self said...

Further adventures in Penguin Modern Classics: some of the eight Calvinos (mainly the posthumous stuff) now have cover designs on amazon.co.uk, and we can also look forward (or at least look ahead: I know nothing about him) to five reissues of Eric Ambler novels, which I gather are spy-type yarns. Covers also on amazon.co.uk.

Norman Collins' London Belongs to Me looks tempting but threatening: 600+ pages. Like the Fallada in fact.

JRSM said...

Thanks for letting me know about those, John--keen eyes. Ambler is great if, like me, you've run out of Graham Greenes and are looking for something in the same line (though a bit more thrillery and a bit less Catholicky). I know what you mean about 'London Belongs to Me': I'll probably buy it the moment it comes out, and then be put off actually reading it by the size for about three years.

John Self said...

Incidentally, your Recent Comments widget seems to be playing up - though it was working earlier this week. I'm getting just the heading Recent Comments with nothing below, both on Mac OS X/Firefox and Vista/Internet Explorer.

JRSM said...

Damn it! You're right. It seems to appear for a bit after I leave a comment, and then vanish again. I'll have to get some code from elsewhere and redo it.

John Self said...

I seem to be getting through the books on this post at a fair rate. I've read the Christopher but am holding off my review until closer to (re)publication date, and I am 150 pages from the end of London Belongs to Me - which turns out to be 740 pages long and not 600. However it's a breeze, a sort of soapy Southern Clemency as it were, only much better than Hensher's effort. And a terrific portrait of a sort of community in a city frequently written about as faceless and anonymous.

Also I am expecting a copy of Alone in Berlin any day now. I have two issues with the Penguin Classic edition: the title is not only weaker than the Melville House version (Every Man Dies Alone), it's also a less faithful rendering of the original; and the cover is just disappointing. If I didn't know better, I'd swear that was Comic Sans.

PS: You really need to get that Recent Comments widget working again!

JRSM said...

John, I don't know how you're doing it with a new baby, but well done (on both the baby and the reading rate)! I'm really looking forward to both 'London...' and 'Alone in Berlin': you're right about the cover/title for the latter, but it looks like exactly my sort of book--as does 'London...', which also seems to have been filmed with an entertaining-looking cast (Richard Attenborough, Alastair Sim). I've tried 2 different recent comments widgets, without much success. A friend who knows their web design is looking into it for me, though.

John Self said...

"I don't know how you're doing it with a new baby"

I'm off work at the minute. Just you wait until next week.