Cynan Jones: The Dig

I did a mock-up cover for this book a while back, but was never fully satisfied with it. A recent re-read of the novel found me admiring it even more than the first time around and I was inspired to have another go, this time printing it off and wrapping my hardback edition with my own cover. I’ve never liked the original cover:

so made this full wraparound dust cover:

I’m pleased with it. The graphic designer I wanted to be when I was about 15 years old never died, and every now and again he demands the world take notice. The world, as you might expect, has better things to do. I should say in closing that Cynan Jones is a great writer, who says more in his short (typically never more than 150 pages) novels than many an author could manage in a 1000-page magnum opus. He’s the perfect antidote to the TV Xanax of Countryfile and much of the ‘new nature writing’ I’ve seen. His is a dark and pitiless world of mud and blood, illuminated by brief flashes of cold sunlight and stolen moments of tenderness. Raw and honest and real. I suspect Ted Hughes would have recognised the world he depicts, and approved of it.

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