There’s an interesting article on “the guardian” (Link) explaining the design differenced of book covers in the US vs. the ones from the UK, based on a book by Hillary Clinton.
“It’s a complicated market, so the design becomes simpler and focuses on broader appeal” and continues with, “I think ebooks and the internet have definitely focused publishers’ attention on making books beautiful, covetable objects again. Publishers on both sides of the Atlantic realise that to justify the cost of a hardback, a book needs to be more than a container of words. It has to be an object of beauty in its own right”
A quick search on Pinterest shows the field of different book design directions:

A closer look at some regional publishers and their “Art Direction”

(no penguin books allowed, as they’re featured enough already )


Echtzeit (  – Switzerland)
  • I really like their book design direction. Content varies from photography to illustration and type only. What connects all of their books together is the same typography and vertical (landscape) alignment of headers and their brand. See how their Brand name on the right edge is always within its own horizontal area, usually in a different shade or colour.
  • Their Spines are very identical too:


Diogenes Verlag (Books – Switzerland)
  • Diogenes is known for limiting aesthetic freedom of their books. On every book, they show a photograph or illustration surrounded by white space (beige) and the title of the book, using the same typography across their portfolio of books. Echtzeit above, is more flexible and creative as Diogenes. But in being so rigid, gives Diogenes a different touch and makes it clear for everyone that the buyer is not just buying a book – it is buying something from Diogenes.


Gestalten (Design / Coffee table Books – Germany)
  • Gestalten is one of the most famous “Coffe Table Book” publishers out there. They are more loose with their own branding, putting the book and it’s individual art direction front and centre. Which makes sense, as coffee table books are often used for decorative purposes, being part of an interior Design of a room.
  • They use full bleed imagery and text (like book titles) on a layer on top. Each book has a different typography making it a piece of art in some cases.

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