Pan Macmillan has rejacketed China Mieville’s novels, coinciding with his latest release, Embassytown. As part of an outreach to South African bloggers, Pan sent me two copies of the new editions – Un Lun Dun (2007) and King Rat (1998) which I’ve reviewed. I’m feeling more than chuffed to have Violin get noticed by a major publisher, and I can’t thank them enough for my awesome new books 🙂
Check them out:
I love how striking they look, matched by contrasting textures: they have a matte finish, with glossy images and glossy embossed text. As a collection, the whole set would look impressive on a shelf thanks to the colourful spines:
But how do they compare to the previous covers? I actually already had copies of both of these books – I found a second-hand copy of King Rat at Rick’s in Pretoria, and I received Un Lun Dun as a going-away gift from my friend Barbara. Bibliophile that I am, these aren’t the first lot of double copies I own, because I like having different editions. And it means I could take photos to compare the new and the old:
With King Rat, I prefer the new cover. The old one is great conceptually, but it does nothing for me, and I’m a sucker for the matte finish and striking contrasts of the new cover. I prefer the old Un Lun Dun cover though. That dustbin with legs is so weird and intriguing, and I think the cover is much more stylish and creative than the new one which has a blockbuster-ish feel thanks to Mieville’s name in big glossy white letters. I think it’s wonderful that he’s become such a big name figuratively, but in terms of font size it can be just a little bit tacky.
Nevertheless, I think the new covers are still pretty cool, and the thought of seeing all those boldly coloured spines lined up on my shelf might just seduce me into getting the rest of them. I tried (not particularly hard, I’ll admit) to find good pictures of the other covers, but I just found this article on the rejacketing. No doubt more will be revealed soon.
Now to continue waiting not-so-patiently for my copy of Embassytown…