The Art of Book Design: Children of Winter

Maud Humphrey, Artist with verses by Edith M. Thomas. New York, F. A. Stokes & brother, 1888.

Is it me, or is that cover totally creepy? I think it’s meant to be a 3D example of one of the book’s sweet, cherub-like little girls, but the idea obviously went sideways at some point and never recovered. The child on that cover has dead, cold, unfeeling eyes and looks downright demonic to me. What’s she hiding with that arm behind her back, and why does she appear to be stroking a mustache? She also has an odd, plastic lustre that doesn’t do a thing for her complexion, but it does increase the creep content of her countenance.

I’ve put the book’s three full-colour plates below the fold. They’re charming in that Victorian way, but I do find their over-sized eyes a tad off-puttingly weird. Nothing like the little Demon Queen on the cover, though. She Shines!

The Mistletoe, Children of Winter.

The Snow-ball Chieftan, Children of Winter.

The Little Prophet, Children of Winter.


via The Internet Archive


  1. Jazzlet says

    All of them are creepy, but the plastic version of The Mistletoe is the worst, perhaps because mistletoe is poisonous and adding plastic isn’t going to chnge that.

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