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Lorcan 2 min read

One of three …
There was a well publicized spat between Anna Ford and Martin Amis which included some discussion of the latter’s behavior at the deathbed of the former’s husband, Mark Boxer. Coincidentally, somebody asked me last week if I had read any of the books in the A dance to the music of time series by Anthony Powell. Coincidental, because Boxer famously provide cover illustrations for the series. My answer to the question was that, yes, I had read some of them, and whereas I could clearly remember the covers I could actually remember very little – or nothing – of the content of the books themselves. That this is not uncommon is I suppose not unsurprising.
Two of three …
I wrote recently …

Also on display in Heffer’s was a table full of David Pearson’s Books as History which I mentioned in these pages a while ago. His theme, I suggested, was that artifactual properties of books have historic, aesthetic or other interest independent of the texts they convey. Appropriately enough, then, you could buy a signed copy of the book.

In recent months, since reading David’s book, I have been more conscious of the physical properties of the books I come across. And wandering around Heffer’s, I did wonder if there was an increased focus on interesting covers or formats for some publishers, of which the Virago and Persephone books were striking examples. [Cover notes]

I saw the nicely covered A writer’s Britain by Margaret Drabble a while ago. The attraction of the cover certainly created additional incentive. But I resisted buying it until today, when Border’s lured me out with their 40% Rewards Coupon. (For full effect, the back of the book has to be seen alongside the front.)
Three of three …
Via @eoinpurcell I came across the wonderful Vintage Irish book covers blog. And from there, I found the website of its author, book and music cover designer, Niall McCormack. Many of the book covers on the blog are familiar and powerfully evoked other times and places.
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