Malamud series
Malamud series
Malamud series
Malamud series

Malamud series

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


The project entailed designing covers for a series of literary fiction titles by an author whose most successful books were first published in the 1950s and 60s. The series needed to look cohesive, with each cover able to stand on its own. The purpose of reissuing any series in paperback with a fresh new look and with new introductions by younger writers is to appeal to younger readers who may be unfamiliar with an important author such as Malamud. One design problem in repackaging Malamud’s work is appealing to a younger audience’s aesthetic sensibility without turning off traditional readers of Malamud who may want to reexamine his work. I also needed to find a design solution that would reflect Malamud’s writing, which is spare, but also emotional and metaphorical.

I researched design from the 50s and 60s, read all the books, and researched the author.

For the final solution, I hand-lettered each title in a similar style, chose colors that complemented the mood of each book, and used some sort of blocky, cut-out shape to add interest and a metaphor to the design while keeping to the design style of the 50s and 60s.

Many young people have told me that they have read Malamud for the first time because they were attracted to these designs. This, of course, is the ultimate goal!

Juror Notes

“The simplicity of the graphics evokes an earlier time and sensibility that translates easily into our congested present.” Jack Woody

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


Design firm
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Art director
Lynn Buckley
Jacket designer
Lynn Buckley
Lynn Buckley
Production director
Giraud Lorber
Bernard Malamud
Paul Elie
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Trim size
51/2 by 81/4”
Hand lettering, Rockwell, Trade Gothic
Jacket printer
Phoenix Color Corp.
Book type
Literature and nonfiction