Friday, February 5, 2010

Signet 1528, October 1958 (first printing)
[first published in hardcover, Rupert Hart-Davis, London, 1956]
Title : Nightwalkers
Author : Beverley Cross
Cover art : Robert Schulz

style ***
substance **
collectibility *

A real sleeper, this one. A largely forgotten novelist, best known today as a screenwriter; plus a terrific cover by Robert Schulz, yet another underappreciated cover artist of the 1950s and 1960s. What makes this cover stand out is twofold. First is the highly prominent use of the color blue, a rarity in vintage cover art (which went more for garish yellows and reds). It's employed to good effect here, with the blue tones nicely depicting the rather desperate-looking, gun-wielding guy who is superimposed menacingly over the woman. Which brings us to the second thing worthy of note -- the figure of a woman, rendered so delicately and ambiguously. The peekaboo depiction makes it difficult to tell : is she wearing something? nothing? or is the figure a sculpture? mannequin? Whatever the case, a memorable cover. [p.s. : pretty spiffy lettering for the title].

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