A Portrait of the Artist as Young Man: penguin Drop Caps

Author(s): James Joyce

Adult Classics

The semi-autobiographical experimental classic, beautifully repackaged with a stunning J for Joyce on the cover. It all begins with a letter. Fall in love with Penguin Drop Caps, a new series of 26 collectible and hardcover editions, each with a type cover showcasing a gorgeously illustrated letter of the alphabet for each author's surname. J is for Joyce. From its chronicling of youthful days at Clongowes Wood school to the radical questioning of all convention and experimentation with authority and authorship, this depicts the life of Stephen Dedalus in his Dublin upbringing.

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Winner of the 2012 Fifty Books/Fifty Covers show, organized by Design Observer in association with AIGA and Designers & Books

Praise for Penguin Drop Caps:

"Vibrant, minimalist new typographic covers.... Bonus points for the heartening gender balance of the initial selections."
--Maria Popova, "Brain Pickings"

"The Penguin Drop Caps series is a great example of the power of design. Why buy these particular classics when there are less expensive, even free editions of "Great Expectations"? Because they're beautiful objects. Paul Buckley and Jessica Hische's fresh approach to the literary classics reduces the design down to typography and color. Each cover is foil-stamped with a cleverly illustrated letterform that reveals an element of the story. Jane Austen's A ("Pride and Prejudice") is formed by opulent peacock feathers and Charlotte Bronte's B ("Jane Eyre") is surrounded by flames. The complete set forms a rainbow spectrum prettier than anything else on your bookshelf."
--Rex Bonomelli, "The New York Times"

"Drool-inducing."
--"Flavorwire"

"Classic reads in stunning covers--your book club will be dying."
--"Redbook"

James Joyce was born in Dublin on February 2, 1882, the oldest of ten children. Though the family was poor, he was educated at the best Jesuit schools and then at University College, Dublin. Following his graduation in 1902, Joyce went to Paris, where he devoted himself to writing poems and prose sketches until he was recalled to Dublin in April 1903 due to the fatal illness of his mother. There he met a young woman from Galway, Nora Barnacle, and persuaded her to go with him to the Continent, where he planned to teach English, and in 1905 they moved to Trieste. They had two children, a son and a daughter. His first book, the poems of "Chamber Music," was published in London in 1907. When Italy entered the First World War, Joyce moved to Zurich, where he remained until 1919. During this period he published "A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man "(1916) and "Exiles," a play (1918). Soon after the armistice, Joyce moved to Paris to arrange for the publication of "Ulysses," a book which he had been working on since 1914. It was published on his birthday, in 1922, and brought him international fame. The same year he began work on "Finnegans Wake," and though much harassed by eye troubles, and deeply affected by his daughter's mental illness, he completed and published that book in 1939. After the outbreak of the Second World War, he went to live in Unoccupied France, then managed to secure permission in December 1940 to return to Zurich. Joyce died there six weeks later, on January 13, 1941, and was buried in the Fluntern Cemetery.
Jessica Hische is a letterer, illustrator, typographer, and web designer. She currently serves on the Type Directors Club board of directors, has been named a "Forbes Magazine" "30 under 30" in art and design as well as an ADC Young Gun and one of "Print Magazine"'s "New Visual Artists." She has designed for Wes Anderson, "McSweeney's," Tiffany & Co, Penguin Books and many others. She resides primarily in San Francisco, occasionally in Brooklyn.


General Fields

  • : 9780143124313
  • : Penguin Books Ltd
  • : Penguin Books Ltd
  • : May 2013
  • : 235mm X 159mm X 25mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : January 2014
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 823.912
  • : 823.912
  • : Jessica Hische
  • : Jessica Hische
  • : Hardback
  • : Hardback
  • : 304
  • : 304
  • : James Joyce
  • : James Joyce