I Dream of Microwaves

I Dream of Microwaves

Farrar, Straus and Giroux, New York, New York, 2003


My biggest challenge in designing the jacket for I Dream of Microwaves was to find an appropriately down-and-out image that expressed the main character’s darkly humorous existence. This was easier said than done!

My initial image search had me seeking high and low for the most prehistoric of food-zapping machines, but when my fairy design-godmother dropped John-Francis Bourke’s photograph in my lap, I knew my search was over.

The desperate image of a man (dead or alive?) with his head in the oven played much more to the irony of the title than any photograph of a single microwave oven (no matter how derelict) could have done.

Juror Notes

“Made me chuckle and contemplate buying a microwave.” Archie Ferguson

Collections: 50 Books/50 Covers of 2003
Discipline: Book design
Format: Book cover


Design firm
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Art director
Susan Mitchell
Jacket designer
Charlotte Strick
John-Francis Bourke
Production coordinator
Michelle Crehan
Imad Rahman
Rebecca Saletan
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Trim size
5.5 x 8.25”
Quantity printed
Rotis Sans Serif
Jacket printer
Phoenix Color Corp.
Book type
General trade