Christopher Brian King is a graphic designer and illustrator who lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. He is the art director of Melville House, an independent literary publisher. His work has been featured in the 50 Books/50 Covers exhibition and in numerous publications including Print magazine.
In Dreams Begin Responsibilities, designed by Paul Sahre and Erik Carter; published by New Directions
This is the most arresting cover I saw this year. The stark color scheme and distorted type are at once elegant and transgressive, and the book feels both classic and brand new at the same time.
Our Lady of Alice Bhatti, designed by Oliver Munday; published by Knopf
Here Oliver Munday says the most with the barest minimum of elements. Every detail in the typography is perfect, but I especially love the clever and understated illustration.
Twilight of the Elites, designed by Ben Wiseman; published by Crown
As a designer it’s so hard to reach outside the clichéd imagery of the subject matter at hand and come up with a cover illustration that’s surprising yet immediately comprehensible. But Ben Wiseman always makes it look easy.
Marvel Comics, the Untold Story, designed by Dan Cassaro; published by Harper
A simple idea that works because the execution is so flawless. Dan Cassaro, the lettering genius behind Young Jerks, gets it exactly right, down to the pen-and-ink linework and blown-up half-tone pattern.
Occupy!, designed by Kelli Anderson, published by Verso
A cover so perfectly iconic of our peculiar moment in history that it’s destined to become the “Keep Calm and Carry On” of 2062. It’s been on continuous display at every bookstore in New York since its release and I imagine we’ll be seeing it for a long time to come.