‘A book is a dream you hold in your hand.’
Books are the fruit of a lot of work and emotions and time and we all love them. So shouldn’t they all be as beautiful as they are with their words? Here is a list not of the most beautiful covers and not of the most beautifully written books, but of the most beautifully designed books, from the cover to the page numbers. Just as a quick heads up, some of the illustrations might give spoilers if you think about them, so just appreciate the art and move on if you haven’t read the book yet!
#8: Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
Okay, so I own a lot of beautifully designed books, so when I was narrowing it down and ordering it, I went through the book and gave it a plus for each aspect that I loved about it. Carry On scored 4 points (the lowest amount on this list). It got a point for the way the dustjacket and the naked cover work together (image 1-2), a point for the map end papers (image 3), another point for actually having a design on the title page (image 4) and another point for the illustrations separating the five parts of the book (image 5-9).
#7: Peter Pan and Wendy by J. M. Barrie
My copy of Peter Pan and Wendy received five points. It gone point for the cover and the back cover as well as the inner cover (when the book is naked) because they are all the same, so they counted as one altogether (images 1-3). Then, it got another point for the adornments on each page in a different colour depending on the chapter (image 4-5) and another one for the font used (image 5). Then, it received a point for the pictures at the top of each chapter like the one in the 6th image and another point for the different illustrations throughout- monochromatic, full colour and smaller with writing (image 7-9).
#6: Persuasion by Jane Austen
Yes, this book has far less pictures than the previous two, but is higher up. That is because the other two had more examples than this one. This book got 5 points, like Peter Pan and Wendy, but Peter Pan and Wendy is a massive book which makes it inconvenient to read, therefore the design of this one is better. This book received a point for the design of the cover (image 1), another point for the design of the spine (image 2) and another one for the back (image 3): although the pattern of the back and front covers are the same, the back cover has a quote on it which I really like with classics. This book also received a point for the french flaps (image 4)- I am a sucker for french flaps when it comes to paperbacks- and a point for the beautiful design on the inside of the cover (image 4).
#5: Die Seiten der Welt von Kai Meyer
A german book! This got 6 points: one point for the cover (image 1) , one for how it looks naked (image 2), one for the endpapers (image 3), one for the inner title page having a design on it (image 4), one for the use of different font in some parts (image 5) and one for the design of the back cover (image 6).
#4: The Mermaid’s Sister by Carrie Anne Noble
Okay, so this book also got 6 points, but I like it more than the previous one in terms of the cover design itself, so it gets a higher place 🙂 This one got a point for the cover (image 1), a point for the spine (image 2), a point for the back cover (image 3), a point for the inner covers (images 4-5), a point for the little scene dividers (image 6) and a point for the texture of the book which I obviously couldn’t take a picture of. On the cover, apart from being glorious, if you look in the corners the symbols mean something important to do with the story of the book.
#3: The Salmon Who Dared to Leap Higher by Ahn Do-hyun
This book also got 6 points, but I do rank it higher than the previous one (even if they got the same amount of points!!!). This one got a point for the cover (image 1), a point for the back cover (image 2), a point for having french flaps (image 3), a point for the scene divider things (image 4), a point for the writing parts that were taken from the text and made large (image 5) and a point for the beautiful full-page illustrations (image 6-7).
#2: A Thousand Nights by E. K. Johnston
Okay, so this book got 8 points. It got a point for the cover (1), the spine (2), the back cover (3), the inner cover (4), the endpapers, (5), the title page (6), the designs on the chapter pages and the dedication page (7-8) and for the texture which I obviously can’t take a photo of.
#1: The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman
Okay so there are probably more examples here than strictly necessary, but this is the most beautifully designed book, so I guess that is okay. This book, well it gets nine points. I can’t be bothered to list them all, because it is just crazy: they are all in the pictures, anyway, but the ninth point is for how the inner cover and dust jacket work together to make the cover even more gorgeous which I do not have a picture of.
And that is it for this Countdown! Out of all of the books on this list, which one would you have made first? Happy reading, Keira x.