You can’t always judge a book by it’s cover. Well, maybe not; however, those “KILLER COVERS” can certainly help sell books! And that is the very name of a super-cool blog I recently discovered by J. Kingston Pierce! Titled KILLER COVERS it is a companion to another blog edited by Mr. Pierce, The Rap Sheet. (one of the oldest, best, and most popular mystery updates, since May 2006)
KILLER COVERS as you might guess, discusses various aspect surrounding those awesome book covers; such as, the artists and illustrators, how they came up with the design, what creative direction and latitude they had, and much more. Mr. Pierce also expands this conversation to include interesting facts behind the books and authors. It features books from the golden age of mystery to today’s new releases, and the complete sub-genre of mystery classics (and not so classics). Dozens of sidebars take you to wonderful places too numerous to mention here.
Digging through the archives I came across this most appropriate post I just had to share, from November 12, 2009: Under the Covers with Charlie Chan! The blog is an interview between Mr. Pierce and designer-illustrator Chris Rahn, who produced the covers for the most recent re-prints of the six Charlie Chan novels (2008-2009) for Academy Chicago Publishers. It is an indepth Q & A covering everything from the artists background and experience, the direction he was given, the number of draft sketches he produced, and his hand-painting skills he drew upon to give the covers a specific look the publisher wanted.
So don’t be afraid. Dive in and climb Under the Covers with Charlie Chan. You won’t even need a flashlight and you’re sure to find something you like there!