The Casual Optimist

Books, Design and Culture

September 29, 2017
by Dan
0 comments

It Is a Truth Universally Acknowledged…

Tom’s new book, Baking with Kafka, is now available in the UK from Canongate Books, and in the US and Canada from D+Q next month.

February 10, 2017
by Dan
0 comments

The Martian Invasion of 1894

Tom Gauld for The Guardian. 

July 1, 2016
by Dan
0 comments

Elda Rotor: The Woman Who Runs Penguin Classics

CNN Philippines interviewsd Elda Rotor, vice president and publisher of Penguin Classics at the Penguin Random House in New York: The main joy is bringing an audience to a work that would otherwise lead a quiet life, not having the … Continue reading

September 29, 2015
by Dan
0 comments

Mrs Tittlemouse joins the Suffragettes

Tom Gauld.

May 31, 2015
by Dan
0 comments

Virago Modern Classics Daphne du Maurier

This summer UK publisher Virago is publishing two sets of Daphne du Maurier’s most famous titles with new and beautifully illustrated covers. According to editorial director Donna Coonan, du Maurier’s reputation has flourished in recent years. She is also an … Continue reading

October 24, 2014
by Dan
0 comments

Penguin Modern Classics The Cut-Up Trilogy by William Burroughs

Following on from yesterday’s post on Penguin’s pocket hardback classics, Penguin Modern Classics are also reissuing William Burroughs’ cut-up trilogy with menacingly dark collage cover art by Julian House:

October 23, 2014
by Dan
2 Comments

Penguin Pocket Hardbacks Designed by Coralie Bickford-Smith

A beautiful set of ‘Pocket Hardbacks’ designed by Coralie Bickford-Smith will be available from Penguin Classics next month. The trim size is 104mm x 168mm (or about 4″ x 6½”):

March 10, 2014
by Dan
3 Comments

Alma Classics by Nathan Burton

Nathan Burton’s new covers for Alma Classics are rather nice. You can see a couple more at Nathan’s blog.

February 1, 2014
by Dan
0 comments

“No Daughter of Mine Will Marry a Fantasy Novel!”

Tom Gauld

May 7, 2012
by Dan
7 Comments

Signature Shakespeare Illustrated by Kevin Stanton

Freelance illustrator and paper artist Kevin Stanton recently contacted me about his book illustrations for the new Signature Shakespeare editions of Romeo and Juliet and Macbeth. Art directed by Ashley Prine at Sterling Publishing, and with additional typography by the immensely talented Chin-Yee … Continue reading

April 25, 2012
by Dan
1 Comment

The Penguin English Library

Award-winning director Woof Wan-Bau has created a wonderfully weird animated short for the launch of the  Penguin English Library: (via Ace Jet 170)

January 14, 2009
by Dan
0 comments

Jules Verne Series at FaceOut Books

The featured work at FaceOut Books this week is 28-year-old Ely Sarig’s elegant–and unpublished–designs for Jules Verne’s classic 19th Century science fiction novels 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (above), From the Earth to the Moon (below), and The Clipper of … Continue reading

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