Book jackets used to be more than just backs-of-heads or handscripts over simple illustrations. But I’m not here to complain about the decline of the book cover (Tim Kreider does that funnily and thoughtfully here). I’m here to give you a holiday gift idea in September: behold the Alvin Lustig postcards from New Directions.
Like Richard Powers’s gorgeous sci-fi covers, the book covers of Alvin Lustig are so good that you’d buy the book because of how it looked, and then see that, hey look at that, the words inside are actually pretty good, too. I mean have you seen the cover of Illuminations or Flowers of Evil or In the American Grain? If not, don’t worry, here you go:
Now, New Directions has 50 of Lustig’s best book covers as postcards for under $10. If you’re like me, you’ll probably want to keep them instead of sending them away.