Wednesday 18 April 2012

Vintage Bond

In September, Vintage Classics UK take over the rights to, and publish their own versions of, Ian Fleming's James Bond novels, which have been licensed to Penguin for the last decade or so. A couple of the covers have been released so far...

..and, while I quite like them (they seem to take their cue from Michael Salu's Italo Calvino covers), they don't seem quite dynamic enough for the books. Compare them with some of Penguin's many editions from the last 10 years...

More on these editions, released in both hardback and paperback, here and here

The appropriately lurid Penguin US covers

The Penguin Modern Classics editions

A Penguin 'Red Classics' omnibus containing Live and Let Die

The first Penguins from 2002, also made available in hardback and paperback
This also shows just how much Penguin has milked the Bond books--6 or 7 editions versions of the series in a decade (plus a few special editions of individual books in the series). You can't say they didn't do their best to make their money's worth. Vintage seem to be aiming for a more "literary" look; whether that will tap a new market of readers, I don't know.


Ian Koviak said...

And I guess Amazon has acquired rights and is doing the series as well.

Hey, if the cow keeps giving.

JRSM said...

That's weird. Will they publish them as books or just ebooks, I wonder.

Ian Koviak said...

probably ebooks. but who knows.

Tulkinghorn said...

The Amazon deal is for both print and e-books: windowed, so that the Kindle editions have the market to themselves for a time followed by paper publication by Thomas & Mercer, which is Amazon's mystery book imprint. ("Named for the streets that flank Amazons headquarters in Seattle") Uninspiring to bad covers, sorry to say.

You may also not be aware of Amazon's romance, SF, literary, and translated novels imprints: Mortlake Romance, 47North, Amazon Encore, and AmazonCrossing, respectively.

This is not popular in the broader publishing world, as you can imagine.

JRSM said...

Thank you, Tulkinghorne. I knew about the Encore and Crossing books, but not the others. Those covers are not great, as you say.