Thursday, 10 December 2015

Monkeys Throwing Faeces

A regular feature on this site used to be the mocking of the latest covers from Tutis, clueless pumpers-out of public domain books with wildly inappropriate covers (start here, get the whole horror show in these posts). But, sadly, their utter incompetence seems to have contributed to them going out of business, and for a long time the world of book design was a colder, darker, less colourful place.

But this morning my attention was drawn towards a new land of delights: the catalogue of Read Monkey, via this delightful cover, which suggests Dostoyevsky's grim classic is the tale of a couple of knockabout, clean-cut Irish lads getting up to a few harmless japes.

Aww, bless.

You might think this is as off-key as a cover could get. You would be wrong. Behold, Read Monkey's finest...

I would put mocking captions to these, but it's just redundant. I like that, though some covers (like The Lost World) bear some relationship to their contents (though with completely the wrong tone), and with some (like Life on the Mississippi) you can sort of reconstruct the "thought" processes that lead to them, others (like The Return of the Native) defy any sort of explanation. And the Captain America version of Thoreu, along with the rest of these, just made me think of this classic comic frame...

Monday, 2 November 2015

The Price of Teeth is... SIN!

An intriguing book due early next year is Chris Offutt's My Father, the Pornographer, in which he writes about the experience of having a father (Andrew J. Offutt) who--supposedly in order to pay the young Chris's orthodontic bills--turned enthusiastically to churning out great heaving piles of pornographic books. I'll review the book itself when it's published (something of an introduction can be found here), but I thought I'd take this opportunity to look at the marvellous cover design by hero-of-this-blog Jamie Keenan (about whom more posts here).

Touch it for a bigger version, as one of Offutt's protagonists mighthave said
In fact, the good-girl-art images used by Keenan here are astonishingly sweet and innocent compared to the depictions of women on Offutt's actual books, almost all published under various pseudonyms by various dodgy outfits.