Monday, 22 December 2008

Capuchins Continued

Experienced illustrator Angela Landels has been at it again, providing the covers to the next batch of Capuchin Classics. I wrote about the first lot earlier, saying that they reminded me favourably of the first illustrated Penguin paperbacks.

At the time, one of Capuchin's staff wrote to me to let me know that, if I looked out for the 2009 books as the covers became available, I would see some (restrained) sauciness. They were not wrong!

Looking at their other forthcoming books, I am much intrigued: they pretty much all look like things I want to read. That they are including an H. E. Bates story collection is highly commendable, what with Bates being a brilliant writer at novella/short story length. He's one of those guys who everybody reads while they (the writer, not the reader) are alive, but then vanish into a black hole of neglect when they die. Only a few of his literally BILLIONS of books are now in print, but his previous ubiquity does at least mean that almost every second-hand bookshop in the known universe contains at least a few of his story collections. If you know what's good for you, you will read one of them and see what I'm talking about.

Other promising Capuchins to come include:

The Vercors book I'd never heard of, but listen to this blurb: Very early one morning a doctor is called out to attend the corpse of a newborn baby who has been killed, the father freely admits, by a shot of strychnine chlorhydrate which he himself has administered. The police are called, but where is the mother? ‘She was taken back to the Zoo yesterday.’ ‘The Zoo? Does she work there?’ ‘No, she lives there … The mother is not a woman, properly speaking. She is a female of the species Paranthropus erectus.’ That sounds like my cup of demented tea, and the restrained cover doesn't hurt, either.


Anonymous said...

A very belated note: "You Shall Know Them" was adapted into a film several years ago. It bore the more marketable, if doubtfully apt, title of "Skullduggery," and starred Burt Reynolds. It may be the only film to begin as a jungle adventure and end as a legal drama (with the African-American actor William Marshall rather surprisingly cast as an English barrister).

JRSM said...

Burt Reynolds?!? I have such trouble imagining what that would be like that I'm tempted to seek it out.