A Tangled Web Book Cover Design

Client Hesperus Press

Format 195 x 125 mm, paperback

Skills InDesign, Photoshop, picture research

A Tangled Web is a book by L. M. Montgomery, the author of Anne of Green Gables. Published in 1931, it told the tale of a feud between two families, which was caused by an argument over an inheritance – an antique jug.

Full cover image of A Tangled Web book cover design by Roland Codd for independent publisher Hesperus Press. The book is written by L. M. Montgomery, the author of Anne of Green Gables. The front cover features an interior image of a young woman in period dress holding back some lace curtains while she looks out of an upstairs window. The back cover and flaps are in pastel blue background with a floral border along the top and bottom of the book. The front flap features information about the book. The back cover features a large quote form the book: ‘I am ready to die. I’ve felt almost everything in life there is to feel – ay, I’ve drained my cup. But I mean to die and in order. I’m going to have one last grand rally’. Below that is a brief description of the plot of the book. The back flap features an image of L.M. Montgomery along with a brief biography.

Front cover A Tangled Web book cover design by Roland Codd for independent publisher Hesperus Press. The book is written by L. M. Montgomery, the author of Anne of Green Gables. The front cover features an interior image of a young woman in period dress holding back some lace curtains while she looks out of an upstairs window. The image is in colour with a slight sepia/colour hue to it. The title and author’s name are displayed prominently in a serif typeface.

The Brief: A Tangled Web

Hesperus Press had reprinted The Blue Castle – also written by L.M. Montgomery. The Blue Castle cover featured an image of a woman in a period dress. The client was keen for the new cover a A Tangled Web to feature something similar – a woman in an appropriate historical setting.

My design: A Tangled Web

As the events of the book took place in the 1920s, I tried to source a suitable image from that era. I discovered that finding an authentic period image, within the client’s budget to be difficult, so I looked for a vintage image instead – something that looked ‘timeless’. Since the plot of the book concerned a family argument, I chose an image that helped to give an impression of that. I thought that the  young lady in the image looked like she could be spying on someone from behind the curtains.

I added some extra shading to the left side of the image and chose a classic serif typeface for the title and author name.