Book Cover Analysis: Series

Title: Diary of a Wimpy Kid The Long Haul
Author: Jeff Kinney
Jacket Design: Jeff Kinney and Chad W. Beckerman
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Date: 2014
Format: hardback
Cover finish: matt lamination and spot uv
ISBN: 978-0-141-35702-7
Extent: 217
Spine Width: 1 inch
Age Range: 7-13

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The Diary of a Wimpy Kid was first published in 2007 by Amulet Books an it was later made into a film in 2010. Since the first movie, more movies and books have been made due to its success.

With the target market obviously being children/young teens, the book cover needs to reflect that demographic and appeal to that market. The first feature that is noticed is the bright neon orange which immediately catches the eye which is done using pantone neon colours – these colours have to be specially selected as they do not ift onto the CMYK spectrum. The book, I think, is targeted more towards boys rather than girls which I think is reflected in the illustrations, the character, the plots and the choice of colour for the cover. Obviously this is not limited to just boys – orange is a gender neutral colour and there are no pinks or purples. The text consists of blues and yellows and reds and white – more gender neutral colours.

The different uses of typography used for the title works for this cover. Diary is written in a serif font and the rest of the title is written in a sans-serif font. of a Wimpy Kid is done a handwritten-style font which looks like it has been written with a pen. It is outlined in white to ensure that it stands out against the neon orange. Then the tagline is different still. The quote “international bestseller” helps to promote the book once the neon orange has been spotted from miles away in the bookshop – who would miss this orange?

The white illustration also stands out against the neon orange. The illustration looks as though it is taken straight from the pages from inside the book which look as follows:

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As it is called a diary, the spreads in the book are typeset to reflect this. There is even lines on the page that the text is placed on and the font is not a typical sans-serif font – this choice is made to create illusion of the pages being handwritten. There are at least two illustrations on every page which are also created by Jeff Kinney. These look like doodles that would appear in a child/teenager’s own diary. I think the front cover reflects the contents of the book very well and the use of colours, space and illustrations is done well to fill the front cover.

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The typography of the blurb is the same as the text inside which provides some consistency between fonts which hasn’t been discussed so far. The back cover has more of the illustrations on – this is obviously a big part of marketing and these are recognisable and help the book sell. There is yet another quote from Sunday Telegraph and a collection of images of the front covers of Jeff’s other Wimpy kid books. This is a big series and the amount of books there are just proves the popularity and tImage-1hat the brightness of the book cover designs works.

The endpapers are also bright blue – a slightly brighter blue than the text on the front cover but this shade fits well with the neon orange.

The spine makes use of the white note-pad with the title and author name written on this to enhance the text. There is also a little illustration of the Wimpy Kid at the top of the spine. If the book is positioned on the shelf with only the spine showing then even by seeing the illustration, we know what the book is.

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Disclaimer: photos my own

Similar Designs

I Funny: A Middle School Story by James Patterson  and Chris Grabenstein

lg-iFunny

 

This book and design is very similar to Wimpy Kid – with the colour choice and the use of white illustrations and variations in typography. This book was published in 2015 by Little Brown and it is also part of a series.

 

 

 

Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made by Stephan Pastis

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Another similar book to Wimpy Kid in terms of design, character and illustrations. These features used in Wimpy Kid seem to reoccur in other book and series’ published since. This book was published in 2013 – another book that appears to take notes from Wimpy Kid since it is so popular in both book and movies.

More interesting things:

The Rise of the Wimpy Kid Empire Fortune

10 Reasons to Read Wimpy Kid – Steam Powered Family

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