Tag Archives: David Dean

I’ve got it covered #2

While I’m at it, I will continue with David Dean’s book covers. And this one is actually blue.

I didn’t even read a proof of Candy Gourlay’s debut Tall Story. It was a typed manuscript for me. Is that why I have two copies of the book here? Maybe. I thought a while back that I’d declutter and keep just the one. But ‘unfortunately’ there was something special about both the hardback and the paperback and I was unable to follow through…

It was also a story that turned a corner for me, and it has a special place in my heart, even were it not for David’s artwork.

As with The London Eye Mystery, it has been a while since Candy’s book was published. If you missed it eleven years ago, now is a good time to unmiss it, whether with hard or soft covers. It also made for best book of 2010 on Bookwitch. It was a year of such excellence, and not just any old book gets to be pronounced best.

Talking about excellence, it brought me into the excellent Philippine Embassy, which is a something that doesn’t always happen. Or other embassies, for that matter.

I quite like this linking to old stories of mine, so here is one where the Siobhan Dowd book cover meets Candy’s, so to speak. It describes so well the way everything blends together and everyone is everywhere.

Have now read through half a dozen marvellous memories from 2010, and I can’t keep linking or you would be here all day. But, you know, these books and their covers have taken me to so many places to meet so many people!

I’ve got it covered #1

It was always going to be The London Eye Mystery.

Whenever I thought of revisiting to best book covers, Siobhan Dowd’s crime novel about a young autistic detective was top of my list, because not only is it a wonderful story, but the cover is one of my favourites.

So there was that. I always think of it as pale blue. As you can see, it’s not in the slightest blue, pale or otherwise. (That was the plain cover of the proof…)

When I wrote about the illustrator’s lot in life a few weeks ago, David Dean kindly popped in to say a few things. So I looked him up. Liked what I saw. And by the time my brain kicked in properly, I knew that I knew him, and that David had been praised by me before, and that I’d noticed quite a few of his book covers. And that he’d done The London Eye Mystery.

In short, I like David Dean’s work. Like I like Siobhan Dowd’s writing. And since it’s actually been very nearly 14 years since this book came out, it could be that some of you don’t know it, or never got round to reading it. I’d recommend doing so.

Good Dog Lion

This Little Gems story has the most gorgeous illustrations by David Dean! I know I said these books are not picture books, but oh, what great pictures.

Alexander McCall Smith and David Dean, Good Dog Lion

The words, by Alexander McCall Smith are not to be sneezed at, either. This is a man who knows how to tell a story. Good Dog Lion is about a dog called Lion. He is very brave, and very loyal.

Set somewhere in Africa, it’s the story about Timo, who might be nine years old. He’s a good boy who helps his single mum, by picking fruit for her jam making, and perhaps finding some honey. Their hard work keeps them, but only just. No way can they afford to feed a dog.

Alexander McCall Smith and David Dean, Good Dog Lion

So it looks like Timo will have to settle for dreams. But because this is a story, we know what must happen. There is a dog, and there is courage and good behaviour and hard work from all.

It’s a very nice little story.