Judging Book Covers

The Book Design Review has released its picks for the best-designed book covers of 2008. We’re a little disappointed not to see any economics books on the list.


In the category of excellent cover design for an economics book, we’d like to nominate Robert Shiller‘s The Subprime Solution, Michael Heller‘s The Gridlock Economy, and Loretta Napoleoni‘s Rogue Economics.

Any other outstanding candidates from 2008?



Maybe economics books SHOULDN'T be judged by their covers. It's not like they need to win those awards, since all the good stuff is on the inside.


"The Subprime Solution"? Are you kidding? There's nothing even remotely well designed about the cover.



And older, but here are a few more interesting covers:





I agree with #2. "The Subprime Solution" has a pretty generic cover.


I guess, 'Gridlock economy' is a nice touch.

The Book Design Review

Thanks very much for noticing this year's list.

Business and economics titles don't get a whole lot of play in The Book Design Review, and that's my fault for not seeking them out as often as I should. It's not that there isn't good work being done in the category. Recently I featured Kelly Blair's designs of the Harvard Business Review Classics; they're fantastic covers that are simultaneously serious and whimsical.

And I do recall seeing Rogue Economics when it was released last spring, but can't remember why I didn't blog about it. It's pretty fantastic.

Joseph Sullivan
The Book Design Review


2 and 4:
"The Subprime Solution" is artistic. Look at the title on the cover like a stock chart. It rises then falls with the word "Subprime" then "solution" rises dramatically. It's not apple on the outside orange on the inside or anything but it is still artistic in it's own way.

science minded

I know of a2008 book cover of such a book that can be judged by its cover. In a way, I guess that's rare: when there's a match between the inside and the outside. The book however has not yet been formally published. I wrote the book. I also designed the cover in collaboration my husband and artist /graphic designer extraordinaire Aaron Fuchs. So, at least, that part is done. Potential readers of this book will have to be a bit more patient til editing is finished and I get the whole thing to the possible publishing house. It has been a struggle to complete a life's work i.e., to get to the point of saying I am satisfied and I am not altogether there yet. But I do thank freakonomics for this opportunity to thank the one person whose faith in me and my abilities has kept me going all these years. It is because of Aaron and because I want our daughter to know the real meaning of succeeding in what one sets out to accomplish that this book will get done and soon. Readers (including the one who helped me to get to this point) need to be a bit more patient. So if you want to see a sample cover by A. Fuchs- see Jean Goldstein, Feelings. That's my hand there. Guess that makes me famous--just kidding.

Signing off for now and until the book is completed-

Robyn Ann Goldstein



yikes. comparing these covers with the "winners", there's a reason no economics titles made the list.

Jon The undergrad economist

The Napoleoni book is a ripoff of a New Yorker cover: (first on left)


Anoyomous Coward

I think that Napoleoni's cover is pretty nondescript, unless it's a parody or a different take. All it looks like the artist did was type "shark" into a collection of free pieces of art and then use the clone tool in Photoshop.

The other two are good, and I love the simplicity of the subprime solution cover.


The cover of Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely is very appealing. Also, the cover of Economic Gangsters is very cool