The Casual Optimist

Books, Design and Culture

Nicholas Blechman’s Best Book Covers of 2013

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The great book designer George Salter once said that a good jacket “must be in perfect accord with the literary quality of the book. It must be even more if it is to function as an important sales factor, if it is to ‘stop’ the eye of the person passing by.” Of the thousands of books that come through the offices of the Book Review each year, these are the covers and jackets that caught my eye, that compelled me to flip them over to check the back flap to see who designed them.

If you weren’t satisfied with my 2013 covers list (and why would you be?), then the infinitely more qualified Nicholas Blechman, art director at New York Times Book Review, has selected his best book covers of the year.

Ulysses, redesigned by Peter Mendelsund for Vintage, is on Nicholas’s list,  and I also liked Paul Sahre‘s design for the cover of That Smell and Notes From Prison by Sonallah Ibrahim, and the cover of Without Their Permission by Alex Ohanian designed by Oliver Munday:

We agreed on Gabriele Wilson‘s beautiful cover for Middle C by William Gass, but I think I should compile a list of all the great covers from 2013 that I’ve seen since I posted my list on Tuesday. (I’m kidding. Sort of).

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