Book Cover Analysis: Travel

Title: Unforgettable Places to See Before You Die
Author: Steve Davey
Photography: Steve Davey and Marc Schlossman and other contributors
Jacket Design: Jeff Kinney and Chad W. Beckerman
Publisher: BBC Books
Date: 2004
Format: paperback
Cover finish: matt lamination
ISBN: 978-0-563-487463
Extent: 256
Spine Width: 1.5 inch
Age Range: 14+
Price: £18.99

Published by BBC Books,  this book is a collection of a list of places to see – self explanatory. The front cover is minimal, which is interesting because, the contents of the book are filled with amazing photography from Steve Davey and Marc Schlossman from all around the world.






The back cover is similar – minimal with a blurb being a list of the places featured in the book. The typography used on the front cover could have had much more done with it, I think. I don’t really like the red font but I like the vertical positioning of unforgettable, so if I made changes, then I would keep this and change the red font to white or black and I think this would go better with the background image. The spine is the same theme as seen:


I do like the photograph used for the jacket, but for a book filled with stunning photos, I can’t help but think that this is a missed opportunity here. It isn’t until you turn a few pages into the book and actually see the photos:


I thin this is a great page – filled with photos and colour and the places captioned underneath. This is an imaginative way to create a contents page so it is a slight shame to see the jacket be so minimal. The colours, the font and the black filled captions all work great together and do no distract from each element.

I really like the contents of the pages inside:


The photography is stunning and these pictures do not give it credit. The photos fill the whole page on one side of a spread and then the other page is halved with text and imagery. I think this minimal typesetting really works – the pictures speak for themselves and the text font clean, simple and easy to read. It is almost like a coffee table book in its layout and the big pictures. For me, this is a book that I like to flick through now and again to look at the photos and then I will read some of the text. I like that you can pick up this book and put it down whenever you like and you don’t have to read lots in one go.

A blurb and photographer biography for Steve Davey is featured on the front flap

The jacket should reflect this and the photo used on the front is still very good, a way to catch the eye on the shelf could perhaps be a collage of some of the different places and pictures mentioned in the book – use of colours, lights, landscape, mountains, oceans, cities and deserts. By having this mixture of images – you can attract more people by having a chance of the consumer picking up the book if they see just a small element that they like. The jacket as a whole does not really give much credit to the contents inside which is a shame, but nevertheless, still a fascinating book filled with stunning contents.

Disclaimer: above photos my own

Similar books:


1000 Place to See Before You Die by Patricia Schultz

This book cover designs takes a different approach – a more digital design rather than based on photography. This book is part of a series and there is even a iPad app.






100 Places to Go Before They Disappear by Patrick Drew and Archbishop Desmond Tutu takes a different approach – places we need to visit before THEY disappear. I really like this cover – it instantly caught my eye and I think the photography is really good. I know want to know where that place is. I think the book I have been analysing in this blog post could have really benefited from even taking an approach like this. 

More interesting things:

Five Great Travel Book Covers World Hum

This Bookstore’s Creative Photo Series Matches Customers with Book CoversPeta Pixel

How to Make an Amazing Travel BookPhoto Book Girl





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