For my first entry into our class blog, I wanted to discuss a publication that I admire in more ways than one. Robert Galbraith’s novel, The Cuckoo’s Calling, is a novel unlike most, because (contrary to how it seems), the novel was actually written by a woman. The cat’s pretty much out of the bag by now, but Robert Galbraith is actually a penname for J.K. Rowling, the author of the seven Harry Potter novels. The primary reason I admire this book so much is because it proof that anyone can write anything, even if women don’t usually write crime novels (which this book is) and men don’t usually write romance.
- Who is the audience? How does the design appeal to that audience?
This book is an interesting product as a work of art. It’s intended audience is likely to be mostly men, since this is a crime novel. The action really takes off in this book when the protagonist Cormoran Strike (a veteran and amputee) is asked to investigate the death of celebrity star Lula Landry, who supposedly died fleeing from paparazzi. The cover shows her about to fall to her death, and for a crime novel, is something that might appeal to the intended reader.
- How does the layout aid readability and understanding?
The layout is pretty basic, not that that’s a problem. Personally, I like pretty standard layouts, and The Cuckoo’s Calling does this with much success. The font is standard, but this is okay because it’s easy to read. I do like the design because illustrations (which it does not have) tend to take me out of the story, unless it’s a graphic novel of some kind. To be honest, it is very readable, but only because of the basic font.
- How do images clarify and enhance the text?
As I said above, there are no illustrations; however, there is one thing that makes up for this fact, and that’s the cover. Yes, it’s not the same as illustrations, but it’s the closest thing to it. As seen above, the cover shows a woman right before she dies. This gives the reader a clear image of what is going on before they even open the book.
- What mood does the design evoke? How do the design elements work together to create that mood?
The kind of mood that this book’s design creates is pure mystery. The font and other design elements don’t give the book this tone, but the cover does. You see a woman being hounded by paparazzi, just before she falls. But was it really the paparazzi who caused her death, or was it an unknown person who is yet to be introduced? This is a story that the cover doesn’t tell the ending of.