Thursday 26 February 2009

Dancing again

Over the years, a number of my books have been reprinted. It’s quite a morale boost when this happens, so when Flambard Press told me that Dancing for the Hangman was to be reprinted, I was delighted. Then came the news that the printers had gone bust, victims of the economic meltdown. Aaaaagh!

Happily, another firm has now printed the book, and I finally received my copy of the reprint yesterday. And this gives me an excuse – or at least, all the excuse I need –to reproduce the basic artwork used for the cover (though my lack of know-how prevents me re-sizing it adequately...)

Rightly or wrongly, covers matter to a book. I’ve been fascinated in recent times to see how many cover images are actually used on several different crime novels. A number have been featured on those excellent blogs The Rap Sheet and Eurocrime, and I’ve been amazed that publishers of best-selling writers have shown such a lack of originality. (Incidentally, Jeff Kingston Pierce of The Rap Sheet has another blog called Killer Covers which is packed with interesting info and images on the subject of covers.)

For Dancing with the Hangman, Flambard chose an image marketed by an outfit called Art Evolution. It is ‘Sand Ridge’, by Harry Hall. The first time I saw it, I was mystified. No Edwardian gaslights!! I really wasn’t too impressed. But the more I have looked at the image, the more it has grown on me. Quite insidious. In the end, I became so partial to it that I bought a framed print of the image, which Harry was kind enough to inscribe for me, and it now hangs on the wall at home.


Philip Amos said...

If you do not already know it, Martin, I think the website 'chocolate cobwebs.blogspot' would be much of interest to you. CC's interest is crime fiction of yore and the covers thereon. She has not added a post since last September, and I must wonder why, but going through the site archive is an exercise in nostalgia and a treat.

Martin Edwards said...

Thanks for the tip, Philip. I don't know it, but will check it out.

Jane said...

I am glad the book is being reprinted.I love the cover and was interested to learn about the process of creating book covers when I watched a re-run of BBC 2's Murder Most Famous on iplayer the other day

Martin Edwards said...

Thanks, Jane. I missed that programme - will see if it's still available.