BY ITS COVER: Book Covers for the Rest of Us

The Crimson judges books by only looking at the dust jackets.

The shopping season is at its peak, and you haven’t bought the awkward people in your life gifts. All you know is that they like books. Your relationships with them are only superficial, so why not choose “by its cover.”

“Apathy and Other Small Victories,” by Paul Neilan

I have no idea what this book is about, but the combination of the male bathroom symbol pointing a gun at his head, the word “apathy” in bold, the sign language at the bottom, and the mention of Camus and “Office Space” in the reviewer’s quote are enough to capture any mild cynic’s interest. There are probably many pseudo-intellectuals out there making this their manifesto. Your witty friends would eat this up.

“The Female Thing: Dirt, Sex, Envy, Vulnerability,” by Laura Kipnis

This cover is thought provoking to say the least. The monochromatic purple gives it a classy feel, and the leaf is a nice touch. I would be willing to say this book has something to do with female sexuality, as I think we all are familiar with what the intentionally immature reference to “thing” means. Get this for your crazy aunt who speaks explicitly of sex and practices transcendental meditation.

“Homeland Insecurity: The Onion Complete News Archives, Volume 17,” by Onion Editors

Everyone’s favorite: The Onion. Even if you are unfamiliar with this venerable publication, you probably can become vaguely familiar with its bent simply from the title. The burning satire newspaper on the cover has a humorous headline about everyone’s second favorite: FEMA. Although you probably can’t read it from where you sit now, one of the other articles on the cover reads, “Nation’s Lack Of Preparedness Blamed On Cub Scouts.” It goes without saying that if we can’t make fun of ourselves, “they” will have won. Your younger brother who is just starting to pass judgments on greater things than the teenage girls he goes to school with would love to quote this book to his emo friends.