Top Ten Coolest book cover designs chronicles hand picks ten covers for famous books or novels which left an indelible mark.
With books and novels, often the extent of art is not limited to the words in the pages inside, but also the cover which binds those. In fact, their standing on the crowded shelves is determined by how well their cover designs are. We pick ten of our favorites, in no particular order.
Kevin Brockmeier‘s “A brief history of dead” is a decent novel, with a grim, sombre tone of content. The cover smartly incorporates disembodied hands to call out the creepy quotient of the content. The collar keeps the name tag ‘a novel’ – truly novel!
The renowned illustrator Marshall Arisman lends his craft to this book cover which perfectly blends the man and devil. American Psycho, written by Bret Easton Ellis – who had first roped in his regular favorite George Corsillo. Corsillo however was ‘disgusted’ after reading the book and had to opt out, paving the way for this iconic cover.
Contemporary artist Shepard Fairey does a nice touch on the latest edition of 1984 – George Orwell’s best selling surveillance novel – perhaps its best cover over the years. With its theme incorporating big brother surveillance, featuring Russian spy novel style narrative and thrilling moments – the cover was as apt as it was mysterious.
Jennifer Carrow comes up with this brilliant bit of graphic, inverting the traditional yellow acid smiley to produce a mildly melancholic frown. It does justice to the content by keeping the rest of the design clean, with only title and author in the face. Sharp, effecient and aptly designed.
Artist David Pelham whipped up this iconic ‘cog eyed droog’ book cover in a single night when the attempts by other illustrators were deemed insufficient for the novel’s latest edition (which was set to release to coincide with Stanley Kubrick’s motion picture adaptation of the same). The result – of course, was a classic for our times.
With it’s stark, minimal design – grim gray skies playing the backdrop to a long shot of a deserted looking Columbine High school, the novel cover provided an ominous prelude to a seminal modern classic. The book is about the Columbine high school massacres of 1999
Jekyll & Hyde design was never so brilliantly cool. Mixing two contrasting design styles and even wildly different textures (puns intended!) makes it a perfect cover for a book called “The Psycopath Test“. The timid, formal and stoic right side contrasts with ‘ripped’ away style on the left to reveal fluorescent, crazy and psychedelic action. Alex Merto deserves a round of applause.
Ian Fleming’s exploration of the essential James Bond element – the Bond girls – called out for a cover which was equally seductive, sharp and deadly like its subject. The result was a perfect femme fatale in graphical illustration by Michael Gillette
Artist Nick Lowndes leverages the skeletal, naked trees to create his vision of post-apocalyptic world, representing the content of the book. His unique stick-figure style at one end of a remote, long road once evokes loneliness and the anemic world the protagonists dwell in.
And finally, the incredibly detailed piece of award-winning artwork by the ever-sharp Joey Hi-Fi. The 2010 “BSFA Award for best artwork winner” has become as famous in its own right as the book itself. What just appears to be typography at first glance, reveals itself as minute , finely crafted details of animals, buildings and people drawn with a unique character of their own. They are all together, but also tearing themselves apart. This one is brilliant right through.