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Jane Austen Cover to Cover: 200 Years of Classic Book Covers

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  681 ratings  ·  148 reviews
Jane Austen never goes out of style

Since the first publication of her six novels in the 19th century, she has delighted generations of fans with classic stories that have never changed—and countless covers that have. Jane Austen Cover to Cover compiles two centuries of design showcasing one of the world’s most beloved and celebrated novelists. With over 200 images, plus hi

Hardcover, First Edition, 224 pages
Published November 11th 2014 by Quirk Books
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Margaret Sullivan Hi! Each publisher designs the cover for the books they publish. I think it depends on the publisher and their intended buyers--for books meant for st…moreHi! Each publisher designs the cover for the books they publish. I think it depends on the publisher and their intended buyers--for books meant for students, the covers will be more conventional, and for books meant for sale to the general public, they will want something eye-catching that will attract a buyer browsing in a bookstore. (less)

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Average rating 4.08  · 
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 ·  681 ratings  ·  148 reviews

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Sep 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned-read
Holy moly did I enjoy this book. Every second was fascinating. I have always loved beautiful books, and seeing a whole book of my favorite author's covers was so fun. It was also fascinating learning about the history of the publication of her works, and how the books were interpreted with the changing times. I also have a new life goal to own the Peacock edition, and the beautiful 1890s editions of Emma and Sense & Sensibility, and any others of that gorgeous style. It makes me want to reread a ...more
Olga Godim
Dec 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
“The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not the pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid.” – Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey (the quote is included in the book).

This is a marvelous book, non-fiction of the best kind. It documents most known editions of Austen’s novels, their covers and illustrations, from the first modest printing of Sense and Sensibility in 1811 (print run of 750 copies) until now.
The photos on every page made me smile. My heart pulsed with joy the entire t
Dec 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
I picked this book up, expecting to see some pretty Austen covers to ooh and ahh over. But this book turned out to exceed my expectations. Sullivan provides a background to Austen' s life and books, as well as how the books were published in Austen's time through the present day. The book is sectioned based on how these works were printed, in Austen's time, before the introduction of the modern printing press through today, where the Internet, ebooks, and audiobooks abound.

I enjoyed reading the
Sep 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I was asked if I would review Margaret C. Sullivan's latest book, Jane Austen Cover to Cover, and I was only too happy to! I had heard about this upcoming book and I was very much looking forward to it and already had it on my wish list!

I always knew that there were lots of different covers and editions of Jane Austen's novels - I own quite a few versions myself! - but I didn't realise how many there really were!

This book was absolutely fascinating to look through and spot ones I own, and how m
Sep 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Showcasing 200 years of Jane Austen book covers with large color photographs and entertainingly informative text, this is a book Austen fans will treasure, but really anyone interested in history, the evolution of book publishing, or changes in graphic art will have lots to enjoy in its pages. The covers chosen vary wildly, from gorgeous to hilarious, and the passages explaining their circumstances and putting them in historical context are fascinating.

In Austen’s own day each title was publish
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
For more reviews, Cover Snark and more, visit A Reader of Fictions.

Initially, I wasn’t so sure about Jane Austen Cover by Cover. I mean, obviously when the chance to review it came, I leaped on it like Caroline Bingley on an offer of marriage from a man of good fortune. A Christina in sight of anything having to do with Jane Austen must be in want of said item. I have zero self-control. Though I’ve managed to keep from adding every single terrible published fan fic of Austen’s novels to my Goodr
Melody Schwarting
Grab your cuppa, folks, this review is going to be a ride.

I'm the first to admit that I'm not the biggest fan of Jane Austen. Hear me out: I enjoy her books, but I'm not as much of a fan as I am of, say, Little Women or Anne of Green Gables. Multiple copies of both novels grace my shelves, and I have gotten copies of them just for their covers. I've memorized portions, acted out scenes in middle school, referenced the stories as online usernames, I'm literally wearing a Little Women shirt at thi

4.5 stars

Originally posted at Writer of Wrongs

You guys, this book is my catnip. It combines several of my favorite things: Jane Austen, cover design, history, and humor. It's got a gorgeous cover and full-color pages and hilarious commentary.

Full disclaimer: this book was made for me. I'm coming in with a just Janeite bias. I've read every book multiple times over, I've seen every adaptation that I've heard of, I can quote lines from memory, and I even have Jane Austen band aids. And most import
Jan 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Austen fans and book nerds
I won a copy of this book from the publisher in a giveaway.

I have to say that the first thing I judged about this book was its cover. Obviously. You can’t write a book about book covers without having a good one yourself, it just wouldn’t work. But the cover is lovely, if not groundbreaking, and looks especially nice sitting on a coffee table for casual perusal.

Cover to Cover is a visual history of the covers that have graced-and disgraced-Jane Austen’s work, from her first print
Meredith (Austenesque Reviews)
Sep 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jane-austen
There are probably more than a few instances in every reader’s life when they have been induced to pick up or click on a book due to its outward appearance. When choosing cover, authors and publishers put a lot of thought into the audience they are trying to appeal to and often take great effort to package their book to attract and entice readers. Having been first published over two hundred years, Jane Austen’s books have seen many editions, reprints, and yes, lots of different and diverse cove ...more
A beautifully crafted coffee-table book that made me want to become a rare bookcollector myself. Not only is it beautifully designed, it is also well-structured and holds some various bits of insightful information and reflection upon the way bookdesign has been affected by the trends and tendencies of its particular time. The point is of course that while Jane Austen's stories never change, our perception of them do.

I could have wished for further explanation on why the writer chose to include
Sep 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance, jaff, nonfiction
This is a great album for all Jane Austen lovers. Have all principal editions of all novels with Margaret Sullivan point of view on them. With some I agree with some I do not but nevertheless it's a great thing to have in one's collection. Saves you from the urge to hunt and buy them all. Or not :) Well, I'm still searching for edition with Brock's illustrations. ...more
Laura Bang
This is such a delightful and well-presented look at some of the covers that have graced Austen's books over the decades. Obviously it's impossible to be comprehensive, but Sullivan provides a very good sampling, with snarky comments when warranted. It's fascinating to see how the book as an object/art form has evolved, how tastes (and marketing tactics) have changed, and how Austen's novels have endured through it all. ...more
Originally reviewed at Books Etc.

I love Jane Austen (though I wouldn't call myself a Janeite, not yet anyway) and I love book covers (especially pretty ones) so I was really excited for Margaret C. Sullivan's book, Jane Austen Cover to Cover: 200 Years of Classic Book Covers, published November 2014.

This book pretty much lived up to every expectation I had. It was set up in a really aesthetically pleasing way, which made the reading experience so much better. Each page had one cover and a write
Jan 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This review originally appeared on Austenprose:

In my opinion, the true sign of loving a book is owning multiple copies and versions of it. For example, I myself own six different copies of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and Persuasion. Over the years, I’ve found annotated versions, paperbacks, hardcovers, illustrated, vintage, and many other types of printings. I enjoy collecting different copies to compare covers, prefaces, introductions, and illustra
Mar 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This books is wonderful. I knew it would be the moment I picked it up (yes, I chose it for its cover). Margaret C. Sullivan does an excellent job presenting the covers in such an engaging way. Every page featured colour photographs of the cover in question, and a well researched blurb about the edition. I loved seeing the covers from the mid 20th century, and was very pleased to see my favourite tongue-in-cheek cover from 2013 of a shirtless Colin Firth!Darcy smoking, gazing off the page.

The hum
Jul 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I must admit that when I saw the title, I was wondering if the topic would hold my interest. I'm not a book collector. I should have known that Margaret C Sullivan would knock it out of the park(Mansfield?). As always, so witty and informative. ...more
Dec 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
I’ve had this sitting around since I went to Austin (ha!) in 2017. I picked it up every few months, learned a little, and then put it down again.

It’s an interesting collection, showcasing the traditional covers as well as more modern takes on Austen, movie/miniseries tie-ins, languages besides English, etc. My only issue was that the writer fell into the trap of describing romance in a way that makes it seem like a lesser genre; unhappy when others boiled Austen down as “only” romance but not r
Jun 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
You know what I love? A great coffee table book. I have had this for several years and I have enjoyed reading a couple pages every couple of months but I have not read the whole thing. Well, during this stay at home time I have remedied that. Over three days I read it and absolutely loved it. If you are a fan of Jane Austen then this book will make you smile and make you realize that there are other people that are big as fans as you. This book goes into the history of her book covers and it was ...more
Oct 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book uses photos of 200 years of covers on Jane Austen’s novels to show how books have changed over time at least in packaging & marketing.

Learned a few bits of trivia on Austen I’d not previously known. Mostly left this knowing it’d be a great reference to teach the history of publishing & books
Jan 23, 2021 rated it liked it
Really enjoyed this!
I set a reading goal this year to read (at least) three Jane Austen novels. I am supplementing with books about her and her writing and this was an enjoyable one. An oversized hardcover (not quite a coffee table book but close), it has color photos of book covers from a variety of publishers/editions with commentary. A quick and easy read with Austen quotes used as illustrations throughout.
Aug 22, 2017 rated it liked it
3.5 stars.
Oct 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars

I love book covers and I love Jane Austen, so really, this was a no brainer.
Oct 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Read/Looked for Review (Quirk)
Overall Rating: 5.00
Photograph Rating: 5.00
History Rating: 5.00

Review: Words cannot express how much I LOVED Jane Austen Cover to Cover by Margaret C. Sullivan. If you are a Jane Austen fan there is plenty of history in this about the covers, printings, and tidbits about Jane. If you are a cover fan, you will love the 100s of ways these covers have been imagined (both English and non-English covers). This went on my Jane Austen shelf and I saw several covers I would
Oct 17, 2014 added it
Shelves: austenesque
Quick summary: In Jane Austen Cover to Cover, Margaret C. Sullivan showcases the cover designs of Jane Austen’s work over the past 200 years, from the first editions to beautiful collectors’ editions to the quirky and the silly. Sullivan highlights translated editions, movie tie-in covers, and covers meant to attract a younger audience. But this book is more than just a collection of covers; Sullivan goes into detail about the history of book publishing and how advances in the printing press and ...more
Nov 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
When I was offered a copy of this beautiful book to review, I was only too happy to.

I have a dreadful literacy secret, that is that I have never read a Jane Austen; I know, I know how is this possible and where have I been? I felt that this book was a brilliant one to introduce me to Austen.

This book is simply stunning, it shows 200 years of Auten's covers with large photographs and very informative text. You don't have to be an Austen fan to appreciate this book, don't get me wrong, fans are g
Dec 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Any Jane Austen fan
This book was perfection for me. It's not just the history of Jane Austen covers--it also shows the trends in publishing throughout the years, as well as a look at how the making of books changed and how they became more affordable over time. And seeing the covers and how much they fit into their time periods was absolutely fascinating. Also, it talks about movie covers, covers from other language editions, and ebooks. The one problem: it made me want to go out and buy a whole bunch of new Jane ...more
Katie/Doing Dewey
Sep 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
My first impression of this book was that it was bigger than I expected and of very nice quality. I loved that the pages were large enough for two covers to be shown on either side of the fold so that matched sets or books with similar themes could be grouped together. Overall, the book was extremely well organized, largely chronological and with reasonable divisions. I also thought the sections being labeled with quotes from Austen were a nice touch, as were the fun extras at the end, including ...more
Kristina (Gone Pecan)
Oct 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Full review can be found at:

Overall Thoughts: After reading this book there is no doubt in my mind this will be a treasured book in my collection. I think no matter if you’ve read all of her novels, none, watched all of the movies and made for tv specials, or some combination Austen has touched your life. Heck, there are modern-day books and movies that are based on them you might not even realize (Clueless anyone? AS IF!!). I fall into the movie group. I
Jul 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Fans of Jane Austen novels have this tendency to be crazily interested in all things Austen. I can say that, because I'm one of them. And this is a perfect example of the kind of weird, specific book that can really appeal to a Janeite.

I was expecting a selection of photos of odd and/or beautiful editions of Austen novels - and I got that. (Seriously, you should see some of these covers. Gut-bustingly horrible and funny.) What I wasn't expecting, but got anyway, was an informed timeline of publi
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