Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Judging a Book By Its Cover: Classic Holiday Editions

I admit it, I'm a total sucker for cover design. I've come to realize I have a particular soft spot for special editions of classics. I am occasionally disappointed to remember I already own an earlier edition of a particular book when I see some dazzling new version is being released. The rate at which I have accumulated classics far outpaces my reading of said classics, but I think I can live with that. They are just so darn pretty on my shelves! And they remind me of the infinite possibility still awaiting me in the form of books yet to be discovered for the first time. (How's that for a glass-half-full explanation of my bulging TBR shelves?!?)

Anyway, this morning I found out about the beautiful new Penguin Christmas Classics thanks to an announcement on their Facebook page and it was love at first sight -- I want all of them!

A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens

The Nutcracker, by E.T.A. Hoffmann

A Merry Christmas & Other Stories, by Louisa May Alcott

The Night Before Christmas, by Nickolai Gogol

by Anthony Trollope

I am not the kind of person who likes to rush the holidays. I don't like to skip over Halloween and Thanksgiving in a hurry to get to Christmas, but I have to say I'm glad I found out about these now. Now I have some time before December rolls around and I am ready for all things Christmas to decide if I want to add them to my collection. Wouldn't these make a fabulous bookish Christmas gift?!

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But to get a little more in line with the current date on the calendar, I thought I would also mention some other Penguin Classics I've been pining over: the Penguin Horror Collection -- perfect for Halloween!

American Supernatural Tales, edited by S.J. Toji 
& Guillermo del Toro

The Raven: Tales & Poems, by Edgar Allan Poe
The Haunting of Hill House, by Shirley Jackson

Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley


by H.P. Lovecraft

I currently have American Supernatural Tales borrowed from the library, but am sorely tempted to pick up a copy of Frankenstein which I don't have and would like to re-read. And maybe a few of the others too, though I'm not as much of a fan of the last two listed here, from a strictly visual perspective.

So, I'm curious -- does anyone else have a particular line of classics they love? I am partial to Penguin in general (Threads and Clothbound and Drop Cap, oh my!) but there are so many other fabulous ones out there -- which ones are your favorites?

NOTE: This is not a sponsored post, I just really like these editions! I couldn't resist talking about these books after I found out about them :)

17 comments:

  1. So pretty! I don't have particular line I love, I guess, I love most Penguin classics' lines though. These Christmas covers are a dream, though.

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    1. I do have a soft spot for Penguin! They tend to be very reasonable & nicely made, even their plainer main line of classics. Now to decide which one(s) to get...I probably won't let myself go completely & get them all :)

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  2. I want them all!
    I am very partial to Penguin Drop Caps and was considering collecting them all - but those Christmas ones are so fun as well. Decisions, decisions....

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    1. Drop Caps are so pretty! My only issue with them was that I already had quite a few of the ones featured and some others I'm not as interested in, so I don't think I'd ever do a full set -- maybe one or two though :)

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  3. Darn it, I just published a really long comment and blogger deleted it - don't you hate that. I'll try to recreate.

    Love the Christmas editions - I hope they'll be available in the UK!

    Redesigns of classics are some of my favourite covers to admire and on more than one occasion I've been tempted to purchase a second edition of a book I already own.

    My favourite classic collection is without a doubt the World of Stories collection published by Vintage. They're all classic children's literature which is some of my favourites to read when it comes to older books.

    Great to see this post in my subscription feed!
    :-)
    Bits & Bobs

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    1. I hate when Blogger does that! I hope they are in the UK too :) Classics are always going for more printings, so it's nice when they jazz them up with new covers -- the re-purchase is a big temptation though! Vintage classics are really nice too & I agree about the children's books -- they are some of the best classics I think :)

      Keep an eye out for another new post shortly which will shine some light on why things have been so quiet around here :)

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  4. I too really love cover redesigns! I want a whole slew of classic books because some of the new covers are beyond amazing. Too bad some of them I already own. :( Although I have a really horrible ugly cover of Jane Eyre that I just got cheap for a class in college and that one I would love to replace with the Penguin Classic Deluxe Edition. Penguin has some of the best ones!!

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    1. P.S. I love all the covers for those Christmas classics and the Halloween ones! *grabby hands*

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    2. Really horrible ugly covers bought for a class are just itching for a replacement :) I haven't ordered any yet, but I'm feeling a little grabby hands myself since I have a gift card burning a hole in my Amazon account!

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  5. It being late and my spelling having taken a nose dive, hope you don't mind me reposting.

    Can't really say I like the horror designs, as such, but the Christmas ones are lovely. I never knew Alcott wrote a Christmastime story other than Little Women. I collect Vintage classics, it may look a bit old fashioned but I like my shelves of samey red books.

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    1. The Halloween ones are definitely not for everyone and I like some better than others -- the black page edges are really cool though :) And the Christmas ones are lovely! Vintage ones I don't find as easily in the US, but they do have some really nice ones -- definitely a nice set for a collection!

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  6. Interesting! I love cardinals (my daughter's favorite bird), but I don't know if I like having them on all of the Christmas editions. I like distinct cover designs that set a book apart from other books. I like the horror collection, though.

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    1. You make a good point! I don't think I would really get them all, but one or two definitely might make their way onto my shelves :)

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  7. I also love the new Penguin Christmas Classics but the Penguin Horror Collection I want so bad!

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I'd love to hear what you think :)