The Singular & Extraordinary Tale of Mirror & Goliath


In yesterday’s post I mentioned having recently finished a cover design featuring silhouettes, not expecting the design in question to be revealed on the Barnes & Noble SF & Fantasy blog a few hours later. So here it is. The Singular & Extraordinary Tale of Mirror & Goliath is the first of two novels by Ishbelle Bee from publisher Angry Robot. Rather than attempt a précis it’s easier to swipe one from the B&N post:

1888. A little girl called Mirror and her extraordinary shape-shifting guardian Goliath Honeyflower are washed up on the shores of Victorian England. Something has been wrong with Mirror since the day her grandfather locked her inside a mysterious clock that was painted all over with ladybirds. Mirror does not know what she is, but she knows she is no longer human.

John Loveheart, meanwhile, was not born wicked. But after the sinister death of his parents, he was taken by Mr Fingers, the demon lord of the underworld. Some say he is mad. John would be inclined to agree.

Now Mr Fingers is determined to find the little girl called Mirror, whose flesh he intends to eat, and whose soul is the key to his eternal reign. And John Loveheart has been called by his otherworldly father to help him track Mirror down…

An extraordinary dark fairytale for adults, for fans of Catherynne M. Valente and Neil Gaiman.

Having spent the past few years scrutinising Victorian graphic design this was a very enjoyable assignment that didn’t feel like work at all. The title design took some time to put together, the challenge with these things being to pour on the decoration while maintaining legibility. You also need to choose the typefaces carefully. The capitals in “Mirror” and “Goliath” were drawings based on period cover designs, while the author typeface isn’t a font but is letterforms scanned from a Symbolist art book from the 1970s. Revival fonts continue to proliferate but I’ve yet to see one in that exact style. The Singular & Extraordinary Tale of Mirror & Goliath is out in June with a sequel, The Contrary Tale of the Butterfly Girl, following in August.

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