This weeks theme is #ThrowbackThursday. We’re revisiting books we read years ago, and taking a look at their covers.
For this prompt, I chose The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly. I read this book back in 2010, I think, after it had been sitting on my shelf for a while. At the time, I was in college, working in a bakery on vacation, and I had no idea what the big deal was about a new iPhone.
When I picked up The Book of Lost Things, I knew that it was a fantasy story, about a boy who falls into a world like his own during World War II, that’s populated by monsters and heroes as he goes on a quest to save his half-brother.
I remember really liking the book and thinking it was a very original concept, and you have to remember, this was before Once Upon a Time became a thing.
Now, onto the covers.
These are the original United States covers. The blue version with the gold leaves on the left is the hardcover edition from 2007, and the red edition is the paperback edition I purchased from the Borders back in the late 2000s.
It was about two inches thick and a beautiful color of scarlet. I loved the color, the boy sitting on the branch with a book, and the font just had a wonderful storybook quality that made me excited to pick it up.
Many editions of this book took notes from the original covers, but I did do some digging and I found a few favorites. My favorite covers for The Book of Lost Things are the Chinese, Spanish, and Czech covers.
The Chinese cover just gives me a sense of foreboding. It’s like entering a dark forest and being unsure of what magical creates lie in weight for you. It makes me think of the original Grimm’s fairytales that were extremely disturbing, and makes me want to pick up this mysterious book even more.
While I tried not to pick book covers that were not closely related to the original, the Spanish cover just seems magical. I love the look of the gold and purple together. I also love the addition of a second figure, and the small changes that were made to the shape of the leaves.
Last but not least, is the Czech cover. Knowing the book like I do, I am sure that if I was in the Czech Republic, and encountered this book as a native speaker I would be intrigued. It’s got just enough on it to give me a little insight into what’s in store, but also keeps enough of the mystery.
Least Favorite Covers
My least favorite covers for this book are the Modern Greek, 2011 United States Edition, and the Bulgarian edition. While this book does have a supernatural, fairytale quality to it, these covers just feel dark.
First, the Modern Greek edition reminds a little too much of a novel that revolves around witchcraft. While the book is important in the story, the characters are even more so. So while the glowing book looks cool, it just misses the mark for me a little bit.
Very rarely do I dislike redesigned covers, but it happens. One case is the 2011 United States edition of The Book of Lost Things was a case where I just couldn’t get behind the new cover. While I like the concept of this new cover overall, seeing this as the new cover made me think of several graphic novels that I had seen. For a moment, I actually thought they’d translated this book into graphic novel form. So for that reason it’s in the least favorite category.
The Bulgarian cover just screams 90s to me. There doesn’t seem to be anything mystical about it.
That ties it up for this edition of Book Traveling Thursdays. What books did you read years ago that you still remember to this very day?