Book Art Review

It’s time for another book art review… the first of 2022

Pictures are rather large so it might take a while to load on phones or if you’re logging on from 1998.

Most of these were taken from a trip to Waterstones: shoutout to the Hastings Mall crew.


Book Art: Transformers

While it may look to fans like this book is huge, like an 80s annual, it’s actually tiny – like a Japanese manga. It is a hardcover, and it does face the wrong way.

Book Art: Vintage

Classic paperbacks lot of James Bond books from the ’60s recently sold in my ebay shop. These are the editions you got if you read the books when the movies came out. Cool. Not that cool. But still cool.

More tie-ins, this time from the eighties. I also have the Young Sherlock Holmes novelisation that no-one read. It’s probably my favourite film. I’ve never read it either.


Books: Royale

Here’s some more manga cover art… Battle Royale is a great manga series, and everyone knows it’s a film, but did you know it originated as a proper novel? It was in Japanese. Because, you know. Japanese.

This cover has some nice colour, but it really looks like they weren’t trying that hard after 13 previous volumes… especially when you consider how busy manga art tends to be inside.

I’ll give them a sincere “B-” on this one, must try harder.


Books: Not Books

It turns out Waterstones also sells games, in fact they are the first thing you see when you come in. You can even get some D&D, which is cool. I knew that this is what I was supposed to be into when I was a kid, but it wasn’t mainstream then. If you were a nerd you were still looked at like you smelled a bit funny and you probably wet yourself and slept with the light on.


Book Art: Good

It’s good that they didn’t just use a shot from the recent movie for this. It’s good to see so many hardbacks taking pride of place in the store where they ought to be.

Book Art: The Bad

This book cover for Adam Silvera is indicative of lazy modern minimalist design. The annoying thing is someone probably spent quite a bit of time and effort doing it. While not particularly awful, I just hate it for being average

Book Art: The Ugly

While it probably looks fine if you view it through the 3D goggles it comes with, this Vintage Books edition is a bit painful on the old mince pies without them.

That’s cockney slang for eyes!

HP Lovecraft covers have a tendency to be crap, but there’s no reason why they have to be. The Cthulhu mythos D&D game books from the 1980s have some particularly awesome artwork, but good luck finding one.


Frankie Zen is an author and jackass. He resides in Sussex.

Join us next month for another book art review.

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