In the 16th century, artists began adding artwork at the fore-edge of books, the edge a reader uses to thumb through the pages.
In the 17th century, others took the practice a step further by discovering that if the artwork was added to the slight inner edges of the pages, and the absolute edge was gilded or marbled, the scene would be undetectable when the book was closed, and only reveal itself when the pages were fanned slightly, creating a disappearing, re-appearing masterpiece.
The same applies to books in general, their true worth can only be revealed by opening and reading.
The cover artwork of a book can tell you a lot about the contents. It can also be the distinguishing element between a good book and the best book. In Graphic Design, Erica Jennings shares her favourites with us:
Graphic Design: Beautiful Book Cover Designs for 2010
Graphic Design: 20 Great Examples of the Trompe L’oeil Effect in Book Cover Design
Graphic Design: Beautiful Use of Typography in Book Cover Design