Books: Chapter One!

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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Warrior 4 Jesus » Aug 11, 2010 6:23 pm

Narnian1, I'm a bit fanatical when it comes to keeping my books in great condition too but I doubt Shantih has trampled her copy of The Stand into the condition it is now. It's more likely that she's read the book so much that it's just wearing away.

Shantih, yes, I'm not saying it's a bad cover, rather that it seems very random considering the story. I get the dichotomy of good versus evil but it seems the cover artist just wanted to tie it in with Star Wars or something similar. Then again, it seems that in the late 70's and early 80's books and movies were notorious for being associated with things that had nothing to do with them. It could even be a case of the cover artist not having properly read the novel.
Then again, the bird-headed man with the scythe could evoke the themes of plague and mass death, ala the Black Death and bird-beaked masks some wore -see below:

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I was just curious and it seems I can't find any discussion about the cover on the Net. Still, thanks for your help.
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby narnian1 » Aug 11, 2010 6:35 pm

DiGoRyKiRkE wrote:I never open my books more than half-way, lest the spine break


It's good to know someone else like that. That's exactly why they don't borrow from me, I tell them not to open it more than half-way, oh- and I sit somewhere around them just to see they don't accidentally for get and do it :ymblushing:

Warrior 4 Jesus wrote:Narnian1, I'm a bit fanatical when it comes to keeping my books in great condition too but I doubt Shantih has trampled her copy of The Stand into the condition it is now. It's more likely that she's read the book so much that it's just wearing away.


oh I have no doubts that that is what happened. I never figured it was "trampled" on. :)
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Silver the Wanderer » Aug 11, 2010 7:31 pm

I almost never lend out my books for fear of them being damaged. (When I do lend them, it's to a person who's just as protective as I am. :p ) I hate it when my paperbacks get those crease lines on the spine, and if one of the corners gets bent, I freak out. ;)) Whenever I stick them into a purse or bag, I make sure to put them in nicely so as not to bend them or (in the case of the hardbacks) dent up their pretty book covers. Usually I'll take the book cover off my book before it leaves the house.
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Shantih » Aug 12, 2010 10:51 am

The book was indeed not trampled, just old and well loved. My older sister (also a huge King fan) got it in 1991 when that particular edition was released, and read it several times including taking it on a trip around the US, and it was then given to me in more or less it's current condition ;)) I try to be careful with it because I don't want to replace it, but there comes a point with paperback where once they start falling apart there's little you can do to persuade them not to, hence the cellotape :P

I'm fairly careful with my books, some more than others. I don't get bothered by creased spines or covers getting a bit bent, but I hate plain old careless damage. I don't lend them to people because I've had books given back (despite my ominous warnings) with wine rings staining the pages, hopelessly bent covers, and other such horrors... some not even returned at all! Never again.

W4J - Interesting, I didn't think of those masks! You're quite right, it's fairly likely that the illustrator didn't have full knowledge of the book. Quite often, especially with books that length, publishers will just give the illustrator a synopsis to work from. It saves a lot of time, but does mean there's a lot of slightly irrelevant book covers out there...;))
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby sillygoose » Aug 12, 2010 11:13 am

sandyentersnarnia, if you're reading greek mythology I recommend the one by Edith Hamilton. I had to read it for school and at first I absolutly hated it, but in the end it turned out to be a pretty good read. Made the work go by a lot faster.
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Warrior 4 Jesus » Aug 12, 2010 6:55 pm

Shantih wrote:Quite often, especially with books that length, publishers will just give the illustrator a synopsis to work from. It saves a lot of time, but does mean there's a lot of slightly irrelevant book covers out there...;))


Isn't that the truth! I remember reading in a Tolkien biography (about 10 years ago), that when The Hobbit was first published in paperback in America, it had inappropriate cover art.

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Ballantine Books. Published August 16, 1965. 288 pages.

I couldn't find a clearer photo but it seems the artist, Barbara Remington was enjoying the 'perks' of the 60's too much or she plain just didn't read the book. The cover features a lion and two two emu-like birds, along with a strange tree with round pink fruit.

Wow.

I don't remember reading about those in The Hobbit. Do you?
That's probably one of the better examples out there but goes to prove a point doesn't it? Make sure that the artist has some idea of what your book is about!
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Meltintalle » Aug 12, 2010 7:08 pm

DiGs wrote:I actually heard from one of the publishers with whom we were in contact, that books today are made to be read two times before they start to fall apart.
:( That's worse than renting a movie, considering the price of a new book...

*decides to defend the 60's Hobbit cover* Let's see... it's supposed to depict the valley of Rivendell, and what could be more peaceful than a lion and two emu? ... ;)) Seriously, most of what I've read on the subject says that many authors have little or no control over what goes on their cover. Other than that I totally agree about the artist needing to have some idea of what's going on, and a good physical description of the characters depicted... ;))

I finished Lord Sunday, the final volume in Garth Nix's Keys to the Kingdom series. Not being a patient person, I'm very happy I waited until the series was complete before I read it. :)
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Warrior 4 Jesus » Aug 12, 2010 7:24 pm

DiGs, that's awfully dishonest of them. I read most of my books more than twice and most don't fall apart. Some do though and that really frustrates me.

Meltintalle, yes, it's rather interesting, isn't it?
I've found an interview with Barbara Remington, the erm... memorable cover artist behind the interesting cover of The Hobbit (in my post above).

http://www.tolkienguide.com/modules/wiw ... +Interview

I asked about the story behind her cover art.
“I worked for Ballantine, and as a practice, always read the books before doing the artwork. I didn’t have this luxury with the Tolkien Books, something I wish I could have changed. Ballantine was in a hurry to get these books out right away. When they commissioned me to do the artwork, I didn’t have the chance to see either book, though I tried to get a copy through my friends. So I didn’t know what they were about. I tried finding people that had read them, but the books were not readily available in the states, and so I had sketchy information at best.”
As noted above, Barbara did make sketches relative to the books, afterwards, but she couldn’t get the publishers to see the point, something which is very regretful.

She laughs about the story behind the picture for The Hobbit which includes a Fruit Tree and Lion. She says,
“When Tolkien saw the Fruit Tree, he asked, “What are pumpkins doing in a tree?" Of course they weren’t pumpkins, but he wasn’t sure what they were. I laughed, but understood he’d wanted the picture to reflect what was in his books. He was especially perplexed about the lion on the cover, because there are no lions in the story. He requested that Ballantine remove the lions from the cover, so they painted them over for later books. The earliest books were released with the lion covers.”
We laughed about the collector value of the “Lion Books.”

Barbara explained the craziness surrounding the release of the Lord of the Rings books.
“Ace books released an unauthorised edition of The Fellowship of the Ring, without Tolkien’s permission. There were some questionable copy laws that weren’t universally accepted. Ballantine bought the rights to the three books from Tolkien, and wanted to beat Ace before they had a chance to release the second two books of the series. So Ballantine authorised the release of all three books at once. This was unheard of. They came to me saying, “We want you to draw all three cover pictures now.” And this was sight unseen.”

She was put back in the same place she had been with The Hobbit, having the pressure to draw blind without seeing either book,
“There wasn’t any time. They wanted them right away, and I had to draw all the covers at once.”


Wow. Honestly. She goes some way to defending herself but still, what kind of publisher doesn't provide their artist with a copy of the book to read before-hand?
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Silver the Wanderer » Aug 12, 2010 7:42 pm

;)) That Hobbit cover made me laugh. My first thought was, "Lion? Umm, wrong Inkling?" ;) My second was, "That tree looks like something from Dr. Seuss."

Just a quick tidbit for Percy Jackson fans: if you pre-order The Lost Hero from Barnes and Noble (here), you can get it autographed by Rick Riordan. :D
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Bookwyrm » Aug 12, 2010 9:54 pm

I was browsing Amazon and discovered that they have Mockingjay, the last book in the Hunger Games trilogy, available for pre-sale at $8.45! :D Don't usually pre-order books, but I can't pass that up.
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Warrior 4 Jesus » Aug 13, 2010 12:33 am

Here's a fun (if at times) frustrating quiz. Guess 24 book titles in 6mins. I got 12 in the first 2mins and then spent some time trying to work out the correct spelling for a 13th title but stopped it early. The rest of the titles I hadn't heard of or couldn't remember.

Post how you went.

http://www.sporcle.com/games/bookcovers.php
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Bookwyrm » Aug 13, 2010 1:58 am

I got 17 of 24. Only missed Freakonomics, The Prophet, A Million Little Pieces, She's Come Undone, Where the Sidewalk Ends, The Little Prince, and The Catcher in the Rye.
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Meltintalle » Aug 13, 2010 7:25 am

I got sixteen of twenty-four. Two were wild guesses, and there was only one of the rest that might have been guessed while I was putting in random titles. ;)) I missed The Great Gatsby, The Prophet, A Million Little Pieces, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, A Brief History of Time, She's Come Undone, Freakonomics, and The Lost Symbol.

That was fun! :D
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Warrior 4 Jesus » Aug 13, 2010 7:36 am

Well done to you all!

I missed: The Prophet, A Million Little Pieces, She's Come Undone, Freakonomics, Where the Red Fern Grows, Where the Sidewalk Ends - I've never heard of them.
The Devil Wears Prada, Jurassic Park (it could've be anything about dinosaurs), Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, A Brief History in Time (I knew it was a Stephen Hawking book) - I've heard of them and seen some of the covers but didn't recognise them at the time.
I missed these as well: Charlotte's Web is the one I struggled to spell correctly.
And I thought The Lost Symbol was The Secret or possibly The Scarlet Letter.
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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby Rising_Star » Aug 13, 2010 7:17 pm

I got 14/24 in 4 mins. I gave up on the rest, lol.

I missed: Angela's Ashes, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (which I should've guessed), The Prophet, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, A Brief Time in History, She's Come Undone, Freakonomics, The Lost Symbol (which I also thought was The Secret), and Where the Sidewalk Ends.

Of the ones I missed, I only knew of one. Hitchhiker's Guide ;))

Hehe, Booky. I pre-ordered Mockingjay in like, April . . .

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Re: Books: Chapter One!

Postby narnian1 » Aug 13, 2010 7:30 pm

I got nine and then quit, which is a good thing because I wasn't familiar with any of the other books except two.

The ones I did get, since it's a shorter list:
The Great Gatsby, Where the Wild Things Are, Eragon, Charlotte's Web, Where the Red Fern Grows, Where the Side Walk Ends, Black Beauty, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, and Jurassic Park

the two I missed that I am familiar with, though never read:
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and The Catcher in the Rye. (I also thought The Lost Symbol was The Scarlett Letter)
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