Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Book Covers

While going through the book cover archives I found a few I liked, but I found one that was just too bland and too simple to be a decent design. I found the texture of the background to be nice, but it has no connection to the story besides maybe color. Then there is an issue about the centered gill sans type that is just way too simple. all in all I yawned when I saw it.

The next image I found had wonderful hard lettered type. I enjoy the style and the color. the position is a little askew but works fine. The bright yellow and red are very attractive and pull you in.

Finally I found a nice type and image based cover. I really enjoy the old style illustration with the cursive vintage type. The authors name is a little large in comparison to the rest of the cover but over all the image and type work well together.

sign.index.symbol

sign: Something that suggests something not immediately apparent
Verbal example: "you are a very nice guy and all..." a common statement saying i am just not into you and i see you only as a friend
Visual example: a sign with a bicycle on it suggest to drivers to be weary of bicyclers
index: Something that directly points out something
Verbal example: "watch out" an exclamation to make sure everyone is alert.
Visual example: the index at the back of a book can give the exact place for information
symbol: Something that represents something else
Verbal example: many analogies and metaphors represt another meaning
Visual example: swastika was originally a symbol for many eastern religions but was later adopted by the nazi party durning hitler's rise to power.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Book Redesign 03

Ender's Game
Orson Scott Card - American author primarily known for his science fiction. His novel Ender's Game (1985) and its sequel Speaker for the Dead (1986) both won Hugo and Nebula Awards, making Card the only author to win both of American science fiction's top prizes in consecutive years. He is also known as a political commentator.
In the novel's opening, Andrew "Ender" Wiggin has a device removed from his neck which was used to monitor his thoughts and activities. No longer under Government surveillance, another boy, Stilson, attacks him. Ender severely injures the boy, believing that this will prevent his friends from attempting to continue bullying him. Because of the logic behind his decisionmaking, he is selected for training at the elite Battle School. After some deliberation, Ender accepts out of a sense of duty and a desire to escape from the torment he suffers at the hands of his sociopathic older brother Peter. At Battle School, the commander Hyrum Graff publicly recognizes Ender as the most intelligent attendee. This acknowledgment causes other students to resent Ender, isolating him from most of the other children. Ender soon ranks among the school's elite child soldiers, eventually achieving the school's top rank. Even after his success the other children continue to ostracize him. Ender attempts to escape his isolation and frustration in various ways, but experiences little comfort until he receives a letter from his older sister Valentine, reminding him of his reasons for attending Battle School in the first place.
Meanwhile, Valentine and Peter form an uneasy alliance. Under the aliases of "Locke" and "Demosthenes", they publish scholarly essays advocating, respectively, diplomacy and all-out war with Russia. The end goal is to create a global emergency so that Peter can seize power. Valentine, who sees Peter for who he truly is, is horrified at first, but relents when he unexpectedly reveals that he truly believes he can make the world a better place. Their writings find audiences at the highest levels of government, powerful people who (at first) have no idea they are reading the works of children. Graff eventually figures it out, however, and resolves to use Valentine as a tool to keep Ender under their control.
The Battle School brass soon promote Ender to commander of a new army called "Dragon Army" in the school's zero-gravity wargame league. He molds his young soldiers into an undefeated team, despite working with an inexperienced army. Ender's army implements innovative tactics, abolishing old methods like the use of formations in the battle room. Eventually the other commanders begin to resent him, and Ender is forced to defend himself from an assault by one particularly malicious commander, Bonzo Madrid, whom Ender unwittingly kills. At this point, it is revealed to the reader that Ender also killed Stilson, though Ender is unaware of the fact.
The Battle School administration promotes Ender to Command School ahead of schedule. In Command School, and under the tutelage of Mazer Rackham, the legendary hero of the Formic wars, Ender plays a game very similar to the Battle Room, where he commands ships in a 3-D space battle simulator. His subordinate officers are fellow students advanced early from the battle school who later become known as "Ender's jeesh". Each day the games become increasingly grueling, and Ender is slowly worn down to exhaustion. Waking and sleeping blend together as Ender nearly loses his mind, while still maintaining his military innovation and leadership. During his restless sleep he has recurring dreams of a fantasy game he played early in his training, as well as visions of the Buggers vivisecting him and removing his memories.
Ender's "final exam" consists of a scenario where bugger ships outnumber Ender's fleet a thousand to one near a planetary mass. Ender orders the use of a special weapon, the Molecular Disruption Device, against the planet itself, destroying the simulated planet and all ships in orbit. Ender makes this decision knowing that it is expressly against the respectable rules of the game, hoping that his teachers will find his ruthlessness unacceptable, remove him from command, and allow him to return home.
Soon after Ender's destruction of the "simulated" Formic fleet, Rackham tells him that all the simulations were real battles taking place with real fleets, and that he had killed all the queens on their home planet. After Ender realizes that he is responsible for the destruction of an entire race, the guilt of the xenocide sends him into depressive sleep. He also learns at this point that he had previously killed two humans, Bonzo Madrid and Stilson, which only adds to his depression.
When Ender recovers, his sister Valentine explains that war has broken out on Earth, and been resolved. Ender will not be allowed to return to Earth because his special skills are too dangerous to fall under anyone's control, namely Peter. Ender is made Governor of the first human colony on a Bugger world, and they leave together on the first colony ship. While scouting out locations for future cities, Ender discovers a message from the Formics (expressed in the form of terrain matching that of the key fantasy game Ender played while in school) that leads him to an unborn Formic queen who can communicate with him through a psychic link. She explains that her race was initially unaware that human individuals were sentient creatures. The Formic defeat in the Second Invasion awakened them to humanity's true nature, and they resolved not to attack Earth again. With direct communication impossible between the species, the only connection they were able make was with Ender's dreaming mind, but he did not know who was reaching out to him. Ender realizes that the Formics left one Queen behind for Ender to find. This was the purpose of their communications with him, through his dreams; the Queen was left behind for Ender to ultimately understand, forgive, and establish in a new home to re-populate the Formic population. Selectively withholding the fact that one 'Bugger' still lives, Ender writes a book in the Queen's voice under the pseudonym "Speaker for the Dead" entitled The Hive Queen, wherein he tells the story of the Formic race. Peter, now the Hegemon, also contacts Ender, claiming to know that Ender wrote it, and that he wishes for Ender to write a similar book, detailing Peter's life. The book is titled 'Hegemon'. Publication of both books as "The Hive Queen and the Hegemon" results in the formation of a new religion on Earth and its colonies. In the end, Ender and Valentine board a starship and start visiting many worlds, looking for the right one for the unborn Queen.
Words- space, intelligence, command, youth, conquest, political power, strategy, games, anger
maintain peace amongst the human race. the buggers came to conquer through a misunderstanding. Ender is placed under pressure by the military to learn and become one of the greatest commanders ever so they may be able to defeat the buggers.
there are many different antagonists within the book the military use ender and push him to be the best, other students are jealous of Ender's potential and intelligence and they attempt to defeat him. Also the overal threat from the space invaders trying to take over the planet earth.
"Sometimes 
lies
 were 
more
 dependable 
than
 the
 truth." -
Ender
"Human 
beings 
are
 free 
except 
when 
humanity
 needs 
them." -
Colonel 
Graff 
to
 Ender
"Perhaps 
it's 
impossible 
to
 wear
 an
 identity 
without 
becoming
 what
 you
 pretend 
to 
be." -Valentine
I was told to read this book and I really enjoyed it. The ideas and plot twists were very very nice.

Book Redesign 02

Redwall
Brian Jacques - English author best known for his Redwall series of novels, as well as the Tribes of Redwall and Castaways of the Flying Dutchman series. He also completed two collections of short stories entitled The Ribbajack & Other Curious Yarns and Seven Strange and Ghostly Tales.
A young mouse named Matthias dreams of times of adventure rather than a life of quiet servitude, but he is counseled to patience by his elders. Redwall is a fixture in the local community, set in the heart of Mossflower Woods, and was designed to be a place of refuge for the beasts of the forest in times of trouble.
Trouble arrives in the form of Cluny the Scourge, in the Summer of the Late Rose. Cluny is an evil, infamous rat, owning an extra-long tail with a poisoned barb on the end, and commander of a horde of vermin. He has only one eye, having lost the other in a battle with a pike. The foebeasts arrive at the beginning of the book and make their headquarters at the Church of St. Ninian, to the south of Redwall, with the intention of taking the Abbey for themselves.They conduct some conscription amongst the vermin in the woodlands. The Abbey inhabitants, who refuse to back down, make ready to defend themselves if necessary, especially since most of the inhabitants of the surrounding area are now within its walls. None of them are particularly martial, but Redwall folk, and indeed much of the Mossflower population, are generally described as slow to anger but fierce fighters when roused, and they are able to make an effective defense. Matthias, fearing that Cluny will still overrun them, begins a quest to find the legendary sword of Martin the Warrior, which is supposedly hidden somewhere within the Abbey, stored away for a time of need. He is helped particularly by Methuselah, an old and grizzled librarian mouse. Matthias is a brave-hearted young mouse, if small in stature, and as the story continues, his natural leadership abilities begin to emerge. Clues to the location of Martin's sword, as well as his shield and the sword's scabbard, have been built into the Abbey. Matthias recovers the latter two, and with Methuselah's help eventually divines where the sword is hidden. Unfortunately, it isn't there any longer, having been stolen by a wild sparrow tribe that dwells on the Abbey roof and then by an adder (snake) named Asmodeus, who appears throughout the novel to pick off wandering creatures. After killing the crazed Sparrow King, Matthias continues to the lair of the gigantic snake Asmodeus, acquiring several allies: Log-a-Log, the leader of a local band of shrews; Basil Stag Hare, wandering do-gooder and general cad, and Warbeak Sparra, the princess of the aforementioned sparrow tribe. He also befriends Captain Snow, an owl, and Squire Julian Gingivere, a cat. Matthias and Log-a-Log succeed in retrieving the sword from Asmodeus's cave (in the process killing the snake) and Matthias rushes back to Redwall to save his friends after being tipped off by the sparrows about the fall of the abbey.
Cluny, in the meanwhile, has been attempting a number of unsuccessful strategies to gain entrance to the Abbey. He has had to deal with traitors such as Sela the vixen and her son Chickenhound, who kills Methusaleh, and had also been seriously injured from a fall. When all else fails,such as a tunneling attempt, a siege tower, and a battering ram, he captures a family of dormice and forces Plumpen, the head of that family, to open one of the gates or his family will be killed. Plumpen complies but he is knocked unconscious by Cluny. However, his victory is short-lived; soon after he takes over the Abbey, Matthias returns. Matthias, his new allies, and the assembled Redwall population turn on their captors; Matthias himself takes on Cluny, and defeats him by crushing him under the Abbey's bell, called the Joseph bell. However, a great deal of damage is done and there are many casualties. Abbot Mortimer, who was inflicted by Cluny's poisoned barb, dies after proclaiming Matthias Warrior of Redwall and Brother Alf the new Abbot of Redwall.
Words- adventurous, tasty, mystery, clues, heroic, leadership, history, courage, a sense of home and safety.
The protagonist seeks to find the sword of the hero Martin so he may be able to save the Abby.
The antagonist wishes to control all of Mossflower and enslave all other animals.
"Redwalllllllll!"
"By the moonlight, on the hour,
In my threshold space lay me.
Watch the beam reflect my power,
Unite once more my sword with me.
I -- am that is, stand true for all.
O warrior mouse, protect Redwall." The Rhyme on the Back of the Door
"Fur and whisker, tooth and claw,
All who enter by our door.
Nuts and herbs, leaves and fruits,
Berries, tubers, plants and roots,
Silver fish whose life we take
Only for a meal to make." Grace, said by Abbot Mortimer at his Jubilee Feast
This book is from my childhood and has continued to capture my imagination.

Time for Another Redesign.

Dune
Frank Herbert - American science fiction writer born in Tacoma, Washington. A short story writer oddly known for his novels. He did not graduate from college, instead he worked as a journalist until he published his first short story The Dragon in the Sea in 1955. Then he set to work on a six year project to produce the first of the Dune Saga. During his time he wrote numerous books and pushed ecological and philosophical ideas. He died at the age of 65 in 1986.
Dune Messiah, Children of Dune, and God Emperor of Dune.
The Dosadi Experiment, The Godmakers, The White Plague
Over 23,000 years in the future, the human race has scattered throughout the known universe and populated countless planetary systems, which are ruled by aristocratic royal houses who in turn answer to the Padishah Emperor Shaddam IV. Science and technology have evolved far beyond that of our own time despite the prohibition of computers and artificial intelligence. Humans with highly-developed minds, called Mentats, perform the functions of computers. The CHOAM corporation is the major underpinning of the Imperial economy, with shares and directorships determining each House's income and financial leverage. Key is the control of the desert planet Arrakis, the only source of the valuable spice melange, which gives those who ingest it extended life and some prescient awareness. Melange is crucial to space travel, which is monopolized by the Spacing Guild. Their Navigators use the spice to safely plot a course for the Guild's heighliner ships using prescience and "foldspace" technology, which allows instantaneous travel to anywhere in the universe.
The spice is also crucial to the powerful matriarchal order called the Bene Gesserit, whose main priority is to preserve and advance the human race. The secretive Bene Gesserit, often referred to as "witches," possess advanced mental and physical abilities in part developed through conditioning called prana-bindu training. A Bene Gesserit acolyte becomes a full Reverend Mother by undergoing a perilous ritual known as the spice agony, in which she ingests an otherwise lethal dose of an awareness spectrum narcotic and must render it harmless internally. Surviving the ordeal unlocks her Other Memory, the ego and memories of all her female ancestors. A Reverend Mother is warned to avoid the place in her consciousness that is occupied by the genetic memory of her male ancestors, referred to as "the place we cannot look." In light of this, the Bene Gesserit have a secret, millennia-old breeding program, the goal of which is to produce a male equivalent of a Bene Gesserit whom they call the Kwisatz Haderach. This individual would not only be able to survive the spice agony and access the masculine avenues of Other Memory, but is also expected to possess "organic mental powers (that can) bridge space and time." The Bene Gesserit intend their Kwisatz Haderach to give them the ability to control the affairs of mankind more effectively.
The planet Arrakis itself is completely covered in a desert ecosystem, hostile to most life. It is also sparsely settled by a human population of native Fremen tribes, ferocious fighters who ride the giant sandworms of the desert and whose tribal leaders are selected by defeating the former leader in combat. The Fremen also have complex rituals and systems focusing on the value and conservation of water on their arid planet; they conserve the water distilled from their dead, consider spitting an honorable greeting, and value tears as the greatest gift one can give to the dead. The novel suggests that the Fremen have adapted to the environment physiologically, with their blood able to clot almost instantly to prevent water loss. The Fremen culture also revolves around the spice, which is found in the desert and harvested with great risk from attacking sandworms. Bene Gesserit missionary efforts have also implanted a belief in a male messiah, born of a Bene Gesserit, who will one day come from off-world to transform Arrakis into a more hospitable world.

The book employs the coming of age story, it is full of different emotions and challenging ideas. words: religion, dogma, truth, good/evil, freedom, sanity, mortality, future, change, family, eugenics, gender, heroism, and environmentalism
The over all idea is to trust in oneself.
The Atreides family mainly Paul seeks to conquer the empire and bring peace to the galaxy
The Harkonnen's seek to gain control of the plant Arrakis so that they may control the spice production and gain political power and much wealth
"A popular man arouses the jealousy of the powerful." Thufir Hawat
"The mystery of life isn't a problem to solve, but a reality to experience." Reverend Mother Gaius Helen Mohiam to Paul Atreides
"A process cannot be understood by stopping it. Understanding must move with the flow of the process, must join it and flow with it" The First Law of Mentat, quoted by Paul Atreides
This book was a very intriguing read and one of my favorite books. The series covers many great ideas and has many life lessons.
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