Publishers are always looking to refresh the backlist of authors and sell more copies. In the 70’s the beautiful painted book covers went out of fashion and photo covers came into vogue. The UK publisher Fontana had paperback rights to many of the well known thriller writers of the time like Desmond Bagley, Alastair Maclean, Hammond Innes, Helen MacInnes and Eric Ambler. I would imagine that if you’re a successful writer the occasional wonky cover art comes with the territory but these covers in particular were very, very odd. Broken Covers is an occasional series looking at some of these crazy covers.
Andrew Garve was the pen name of Paul Winterton, a journalist who spent a great deal of time in the Soviet Union in the 30’s and 40’s. He wrote about the German atrocities after seeing one of the camps with the Soviet army, raised an alarm on the threat of communism and traveled all over world. Winterton, in what seems to be just the way it worked in the 50’s and 60’s, used all of these experiences to write thrillers under a variety of pseudonyms.
His best reviewed seem to be Murder in Moscow and A Hero for Leanda but he is another one of the relatively successful authors of that era that has fallen off the radar of the modern reader. There have been a few good pieces written about him, especially Authors’ Calendar, that you can find online and from where I pulled this information.
All of this to say that he was unable to avoid the dreaded 70’s photo cover. Some of the most notable examples are below with more to follow in a later post.