This week, TIME Magazine revealed the cover for Colson Whitehead’s next novel, Harlem Shuffle, which was—like his previous two novels, The Underground Railroad and The Nickel Boys—designed by Lit Hub favorite Oliver Munday.
The novel takes inspiration from classic caper narratives, and so does the cover. “Munday sought to capture those stakes through the cover art, looking to the bold and eclectic posters of the ’50s and ’60s and signs for iconic Harlem spots like the Apollo Theater,” reports Lucy Feldman at TIME.
He wanted to reflect the humor and genre elements of the novel. Whitehead sees the “manic energy” of Harlem Shuffle reflected in the design. “It’s a book about the city, about walking, about collisions,” he says. “That complicated jigsaw cover prepares you for what’s inside.”
Here’s the result:
On Twitter, I also caught a glimpse of the UK cover, which uses the same art and concept, edited slightly for a more straightforward title presentation.
Harlem Shuffle will be published on September 14. You can preorder it here.