Book Jacket Designs by Colleen Reinhart
Remember Colleen Reinhart? I featured her back in February for the book cover she did of The Queen of Hearts by Kimmery Martin. I am so happy to have her back on Hasty Book List to talk about the book cover she did for As Bright As Heaven by Susan Meissner. Continue reading to hear about Colleen's inspiration for the cover and to see the original design compared to the end design! It is amazing how much a design can change while still maintaining the original concept.
I have been lucky enough to work on Susan Meissner’s books since I started at Penguin Random House and I always get excited when I get a new manuscript from her. As Bright as Heaven was the first time we were giving this author a hardcover package so this meant we had some space to play around with the art.
Since Meissner writes historical fiction I always use photographs from the time period as a jumping off point. This particular book takes place in the Philadelphia during the Spanish Flu epidemic, while not exactly as glamorous as some of Meissner’s previous settings is certainly evocative and full of interesting visuals.
One of the first images I found for this book was of a woman looking out through two tall doors that reminded me of a cathedral and played to the idea of loss and the Bright family’s relationship to it. I added a blurred photo of Swann Memorial Fountain in Philadelphia and showed it around.
The doors were nixed and a lot of the cover ended up changing slightly, from the color palette, to the typeface, to the actual title-but the overall concept stayed the same: a woman quietly looking out at the Philadelphia landscape. I hope this cover makes the reader wonder what this woman is thinking about, why she is standing alone in the middle of a presumably busy city.