It all begins with a letter. Fall in love with Penguin Drop Caps, a new series of twenty-six collectible and hardcover editions, each with a type cover showcasing a gorgeously illustrated letter of the alphabet. In a design collaboration between Jessica Hische and Penguin Art Director Paul Buckley, the series features unique cover art by Hische, a superstar in the world of type design and illustration, whose work has appeared everywhere from Tiffany & Co. to Wes Anderson's recent film Moonrise Kingdom to Penguin's own bestsellers Committed and Rules of Civility. With exclusive designs that have never before appeared on Hische's hugely popular Daily Drop Cap blog, the Penguin Drop Caps series debuted with an 'A' for Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, a 'B' for Charlotte Brönte's Jane Eyre, and a 'C' for Willa Cather's My Ántonia. It continues with more perennial classics, perfect to give as elegant gifts or to showcase on your own shelves.
X is for Xinran. In 1994, journalist and author Xinran met a Chinese woman with an extraordinary story. For over thirty years, since the 1950s, Shu Wen searched the mountains of north Tibet for her husband, a Chinese military doctor, who was missing in action. Her moving and unforgettable life story brilliantly recreated by Xinran, gives insight into the landscape, religion and people of Tibet. At the same time it illuminates the complex and emotional relationship and history between the Tibetans and Chinese. Traveling thousands of miles, and taken in by a Tibetan family, Shu Wen lived a nomadic life through numerous seasons with silence and simplicity, motivated by her search for her husband. An unforgettable and ultimately uplifting tale of loss, loyalty, courage and survival, above all, Sky Burial is an epic and enduring love story.
About the Author
Julia Lovell teaches modern Chinese history and literature at Birkbeck College, University of London. She is the author of The Politics of Cultural Capital: China’s Quest for a Nobel Prize in Literature, The Great Wall: China Against the World and The Opium War: Drugs, Dreams and the Making of China. Her several translations of modern Chinese fiction include Han Shaogong's A Dictionary of Maqiao (winner of 2011 Newman Prize for Chinese Literature), Zhu Wen's I Love Dollars, and Lu Xun’s The Real Story of Ah-Q, and Other Tales of China.
Esther Tyldesley has translated several other works by Xinran including The Good Women of China. She works in both Asian Studies and Translation Studies, and has been teaching Chinese language and Chinese-English translation at Edinburgh University since 2004.
Jessica Hische is a letterer, illustrator, typographer, and web designer. She currently serves on the Type Directors Club board of directors, has been named a Forbes Magazine "30 under 30" in art and design as well as an ADC Young Gun and one of Print Magazine’s "New Visual Artists". She has designed for Wes Anderson, McSweeney's, Tiffany & Co, Penguin Books and many others. She resides primarily in San Francisco, occasionally in Brooklyn.
Read an Excerpt
Excerpted from "Sky Burial"
Copyright © 2014 Julia Xinran.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
What People are Saying About This
Winner of the 2012 Fifty Books/Fifty Covers show, organized by Design Observer in association with AIGA and Designers & Books
Winner of the 2014 Type Directors Club Communication Design Award
Praise for Penguin Drop Caps:
"[Penguin Drop Caps] convey a sense of nostalgia for the tactility and aesthetic power of a physical book and for a centuries-old tradition of beautiful lettering."
“Vibrant, minimalist new typographic covers…. Bonus points for the heartening gender balance of the initial selections.”
—Maria Popova, Brain Pickings
"The Penguin Drop Caps series is a great example of the power of design. Why buy these particular classics when there are less expensive, even free editions of Great Expectations? Because they’re beautiful objects. Paul Buckley and Jessica Hische’s fresh approach to the literary classics reduces the design down to typography and color. Each cover is foil-stamped with a cleverly illustrated letterform that reveals an element of the story. Jane Austen’s A (Pride and Prejudice) is formed by opulent peacock feathers and Charlotte Bronte’s B (Jane Eyre) is surrounded by flames. The complete set forms a rainbow spectrum prettier than anything else on your bookshelf."
—Rex Bonomelli, The New York Times
"Classic reads in stunning covers—your book club will be dying."