The cover for Teju Cole’s new novel Tremor just came out. Tremor will be published by Random House on October 17.
The book cover features different colored vertical thread merging into each other in a rainbow-like formation – green to blue to purple to pink to red. Perhaps the threads refer to the multiple elements of the narrative that unravel parallel to each other and reveal the narrative slowly.
Cole shared that the cover is deliberately understated. This speaks to the pace of the story, how it gradually builds up towards some kind of revelation. “In a world where most things tend to be overstated, it feels like a wonderful privilege to get to make something a bit oblique, something with patient and accretive power,” states Cole. Read the full remarks below.
The cover is designed by Alex Merto. Cole commented on his book cover, saying:
The best book designs are, in my view, not illustrative. They stand as their own thing in some sort of relation to the book, at a cooperative angle to it. I feel lucky to have worked with the designer Alex Merto several times before. He’s a subtle designer who always comes up with something surprising. My ideal of a novel is a work of prose fiction that reveals what it is up to quite slowly. There’s the title, which gives some information, but not much. And there’s cover design, which tells us a little more, but only a little more. And then you read the first chapter, and the second, and so on. Every element of the book works in concert to provide an experience that is not easily summarizable. In a world where most things tend to be overstated, it feels like a wonderful privilege to get to make something a bit oblique, something with patient and accretive power. And Alex really got that in his design for Tremor.
The cover designer Alex Merto added that Teju Cole was one of his favorite writers because of his unique style of storytelling and “getting the chance to work on one of your favorite writer’s books is an incredible experience.” Merto found the project even more special as he got the chance to connect directly with Teju throughout the process.
Tremor focuses on the character of Tunde, a Nigerian photographer teaching at a renowned New England University, and the many stories and events he gets to be a witness to. See our book news post here.
In the publisher’s note, Tunde is described as a “reader, a listener, a traveler, drawn to many different kinds of stories,” including history, books, films, and those of friends, family, and strangers. Together, these stories make up the days of his life.