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Elsa Mathern

Elsa Mathern - Designer

Grenoble, France

I design minimalist and retro book covers, often for historical and literary crime/mystery novels but not only.

Overview

Hello! I am an experienced graphic designer and typesetter working for the publishing industry. I have worked as a freelance book designer since 2005, predominantly for covers of literary and historical crime/thriller novels for authors such as Robert Olen Butler, James Sallis and Bill Beverly. I also design non-fiction books, from academic criticism to 'how to' guides, primarily about cinema and pop culture.

I have designed covers and interior layouts for hundreds of publications ranging from short novelty books to 800+ pages reference books. I am also a skilled typesetter in both English and French.

After some years in London, I am now based in the French Alps and work with independent publishers, university presses and self-published authors from the UK, France and North America.

Clients include: Oldcastle Books, Columbia University Press, Hurst Publishers, Presses de Sciences Po., Dalloz

Services
Languages
English
Fiction
Classics Crime & Mystery Historical Fiction Literature Thriller
Non-Fiction
Education & Reference

Certifications

  • Master of Arts Typo/Graphic Studies, 2005
  • Professional Development Award in Design, 2003
  • BTS Communication visuelle, 1999

Work experience

Graphic Designer

Self-employed
January, 2005 – Present (almost 13 years)

Graphic Designer

Wallflower Press
October, 2003 – January, 2005 (over 1 year)

Portfolio (18 selected works)

Coyote

Colin Winnette

A daughter disappears in the middle of the night. What happens in the aftermath of this tragedy-after the search is abandoned, after the TV crews move on to cover the latest horrific incident-is the story of Coyote. There is a marriage and a detective. There is a storm, a talk show host, and a roasted boar. People are murdered and things are hidden. Coyotes skulk in the woods, a man stands by ... read more

A daughter disappears in the middle of the night. What happens in the aftermath of this tragedy-after the search is abandoned, after the TV crews move on to cover the latest horrific incident-is the story of Coyote. There is a marriage and a detective. There is a storm, a talk show host, and a roasted boar. People are murdered and things are hidden. Coyotes skulk in the woods, a man stands by ... read more

Dodgers

Bill Beverly

Winner of the British Book Award for Best Crime & Thriller Novel 2017Winner of the CWA Goldsboro Gold Dagger Award 2016Winner of the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger Award 2016Winner of the LA Times Book Prize 2017Shortlisted for the British Book Award for Overall Book of the Year 2017Shortlisted for the Edgar Award for Best First Novel 2017Shortlisted for the PEN/Hemingway Award for Debut ... read more

Winner of the British Book Award for Best Crime & Thriller Novel 2017Winner of the CWA Goldsboro Gold Dagger Award 2016Winner of the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger Award 2016Winner of the LA Times Book Prize 2017Shortlisted for the British Book Award for Overall Book of the Year 2017Shortlisted for the Edgar Award for Best First Novel 2017Shortlisted for the PEN/Hemingway Award for Debut ... read more

The Ashes of Berlin

Luke McCallin

Shortlisted for the CWA Endeavour Historical Dagger 2017'Let's not mince words: historical thrillers don't come any better than The Ashes of Berlin' – Financial Times1947 and Gregor Reinhardt has been hired back onto Berlin's civilian police force. The city is divided among the victorious allied powers, tensions are growing, and the police are riven by internal rivalries as factions within it ... read more

Shortlisted for the CWA Endeavour Historical Dagger 2017'Let's not mince words: historical thrillers don't come any better than The Ashes of Berlin' – Financial Times1947 and Gregor Reinhardt has been hired back onto Berlin's civilian police force. The city is divided among the victorious allied powers, tensions are growing, and the police are riven by internal rivalries as factions within it ... read more

Road Closed

Leigh Russell

‘COMPELLING’ – PETER JAMES * ‘UNMISSABLE’ – LEE CHILD * ‘A RARE TALENT’ – DAILY MAILWhen a man dies in a gas explosion, the police suspect arson. The Murder Investigation Team are called in to investigate. The case takes on a new and terrible twist when a local villain is viciously attacked. As the police enquiries lead from the expensive Harchester Hill estate to the local brothel, a witness ... read more

‘COMPELLING’ – PETER JAMES * ‘UNMISSABLE’ – LEE CHILD * ‘A RARE TALENT’ – DAILY MAILWhen a man dies in a gas explosion, the police suspect arson. The Murder Investigation Team are called in to investigate. The case takes on a new and terrible twist when a local villain is viciously attacked. As the police enquiries lead from the expensive Harchester Hill estate to the local brothel, a witness ... read more

Pride and Prejudice

Austen Jane, Jane Austen

Lock Up Your Daughters... Darcy's in Town! Mrs Bennett is on a mission to marry off her five daughters to rich men. Enter, Mr Charles Bingley and his rather fit friend, Darcy. Love, loathing and bittersweet romance follow...

Lock Up Your Daughters... Darcy's in Town! Mrs Bennett is on a mission to marry off her five daughters to rich men. Enter, Mr Charles Bingley and his rather fit friend, Darcy. Love, loathing and bittersweet romance follow...

Boundary

Andree Michaud

Drive

James Sallis

I drive. That's what I do. All I do.Much later, as he sat with his back against an inside wall of a Motel 6 just north of Phoenix, watching the pool of blood lap toward him, Driver would wonder whether he had made a terrible mistake. Later still, of course, there'd be no doubt. But for now Driver is, as they say, in the moment. And the moment includes this blood lapping toward him, the pressur... read more

I drive. That's what I do. All I do.Much later, as he sat with his back against an inside wall of a Motel 6 just north of Phoenix, watching the pool of blood lap toward him, Driver would wonder whether he had made a terrible mistake. Later still, of course, there'd be no doubt. But for now Driver is, as they say, in the moment. And the moment includes this blood lapping toward him, the pressur... read more

Walden Of Bermondsey

Peter Murphy

The Hunter and other stories

Dashiell Hammett

The Hunter and Other Storiesis a unique literary publication from one of the greatest writers of the twentieth century, Dashiell Hammett. This volume includes new Hammett stories gleaned from his personal archives along with screen treatments long buried in film-industry files, screen stories, unpublished and rarely published fiction, and intriguing unfinished narratives. Hammett is regarded a... read more

The Hunter and Other Storiesis a unique literary publication from one of the greatest writers of the twentieth century, Dashiell Hammett. This volume includes new Hammett stories gleaned from his personal archives along with screen treatments long buried in film-industry files, screen stories, unpublished and rarely published fiction, and intriguing unfinished narratives. Hammett is regarded a... read more

Hillstation

Robin Mukherjee

Dreaming of escape from his remote village in the Himalayan foothills, Rabindra entreats the gods to send him an English bride. When a saucy English dance troupe arrives on the run from a Bombay crime boss, Rabindra believes that his prayers have been answered. Except that they have no interest in marrying anyone. As the village begins to unravel in the presence of these scandalous foreigners,... read more

Dreaming of escape from his remote village in the Himalayan foothills, Rabindra entreats the gods to send him an English bride. When a saucy English dance troupe arrives on the run from a Bombay crime boss, Rabindra believes that his prayers have been answered. Except that they have no interest in marrying anyone. As the village begins to unravel in the presence of these scandalous foreigners,... read more

Steampunk

Paul Roland

What began in the late 1980s as an underground community of science fantasy aficionados with a fetish for Victoriana now pervades almost every aspect of popular culture from music and movies to comics and computer games. Steampunk is much more than a retro-futuristic fashion statement or a subgenre of science fiction. On the surface its adherents profess a penchant for neo-Victorian fashion, f... read more

What began in the late 1980s as an underground community of science fantasy aficionados with a fetish for Victoriana now pervades almost every aspect of popular culture from music and movies to comics and computer games. Steampunk is much more than a retro-futuristic fashion statement or a subgenre of science fiction. On the surface its adherents profess a penchant for neo-Victorian fashion, f... read more

Hold the Dark

William Giraldi

Hold the Dark by William Giraldi is a terrifying literary thriller set on the Alaskan tundra, about the mystery of evil and mankind's losing battle with nature. Wolves have come for the children of Keelut. Three children have been taken from this isolated Alaskan village, including the six-year-old boy of Medora and Vernon Slone. Wolf expert Russell Core arrives in Keelut to investigate the ki... read more

Hold the Dark by William Giraldi is a terrifying literary thriller set on the Alaskan tundra, about the mystery of evil and mankind's losing battle with nature. Wolves have come for the children of Keelut. Three children have been taken from this isolated Alaskan village, including the six-year-old boy of Medora and Vernon Slone. Wolf expert Russell Core arrives in Keelut to investigate the ki... read more

South

Merlin Coverley

How has the idea of the South come to exert such a powerful hold over our imagination?Artists and writers from the colder climes of northern Europe have long felt the lure of the South of the continent. Goethe was revitalised by his encounters with Mediterranean culture on his journey to Italy. Nietzsche took flight to the south to begin his life anew. D H Lawrence sought the health-giving sou... read more

How has the idea of the South come to exert such a powerful hold over our imagination?Artists and writers from the colder climes of northern Europe have long felt the lure of the South of the continent. Goethe was revitalised by his encounters with Mediterranean culture on his journey to Italy. Nietzsche took flight to the south to begin his life anew. D H Lawrence sought the health-giving sou... read more

Fast Forward

Holly Willis

Cinema, the primary vehicle for storytelling in the twentieth century, is being reconfigured y new media in the twenty-first. Terms such as "worldbuilding," "virtual reality," and "transmedia" introduce new methods for constructing a screenplay and experiencing and sharing a story. Similarly, 3D cinematography, hypercinema, and visual effects require different modes for composing an image, and... read more

Cinema, the primary vehicle for storytelling in the twentieth century, is being reconfigured y new media in the twenty-first. Terms such as "worldbuilding," "virtual reality," and "transmedia" introduce new methods for constructing a screenplay and experiencing and sharing a story. Similarly, 3D cinematography, hypercinema, and visual effects require different modes for composing an image, and... read more

Country of the Bad Wolfes

James Carlos Blake

Begat by an Irish-English pirate in New Hampshire in 1828, the Wolfe family follows its manifest destiny into war-torn Mexico. There, through the connection of a mysterious American named Edward Little, their fortunes intertwine with those of Porfirio Díaz, who will rule the country for more than thirty years before his overthrow by the Revolution of 1910. In the course of those tumultuous cha... read more

Begat by an Irish-English pirate in New Hampshire in 1828, the Wolfe family follows its manifest destiny into war-torn Mexico. There, through the connection of a mysterious American named Edward Little, their fortunes intertwine with those of Porfirio Díaz, who will rule the country for more than thirty years before his overthrow by the Revolution of 1910. In the course of those tumultuous cha... read more

The Harbour Master

Daniel Pembrey

'The Henning Mankell of Amsterdam' - Bill Rogers, author of The Pick, The Spade and The CrowHenk van der Pol is a 30-year-term policeman, a few months off retirement. When he finds a woman's body in Amsterdam Harbour, his detective instincts take over, even though it's not his jurisdiction. Warned off investigating the case, Henk soon realises he can trust nobody, as his search for the killer ... read more

'The Henning Mankell of Amsterdam' - Bill Rogers, author of The Pick, The Spade and The CrowHenk van der Pol is a 30-year-term policeman, a few months off retirement. When he finds a woman's body in Amsterdam Harbour, his detective instincts take over, even though it's not his jurisdiction. Warned off investigating the case, Henk soon realises he can trust nobody, as his search for the killer ... read more

Writing & Selling - Crime Film Screenplays

Karen Lee Street

Aimed at screenwriters, producers, development executives and educators interested in the crime genre, this book provides an invaluable basis for crafting a film story that considers both audience and market expectations without compromising originality. A brief historical overview of the crime genre is presented for context along with an analysis of various crime sub-genres and their key conv... read more

Aimed at screenwriters, producers, development executives and educators interested in the crime genre, this book provides an invaluable basis for crafting a film story that considers both audience and market expectations without compromising originality. A brief historical overview of the crime genre is presented for context along with an analysis of various crime sub-genres and their key conv... read more

An Honorable Man

Paul Vidich

‘Cold War spy fiction in the grand tradition, neatly plotted betrayals in that shadow world where no one can be trusted and agents are haunted by their own moral compromises.’ - Joseph Kanon, New York Times bestselling author of Istanbul Passage and The Good German Washington D. C., 1953. The Cold War is heating up: McCarthyism, with all its fear and demagoguery, is raging in the nation's capi... read more

‘Cold War spy fiction in the grand tradition, neatly plotted betrayals in that shadow world where no one can be trusted and agents are haunted by their own moral compromises.’ - Joseph Kanon, New York Times bestselling author of Istanbul Passage and The Good German Washington D. C., 1953. The Cold War is heating up: McCarthyism, with all its fear and demagoguery, is raging in the nation's capi... read more

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Scott Levine

Twenty years of experience in the book publishing industry. My work features a wide range of both jacket/cover and interior book designs.

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Emma J. Hardy

Freelance book cover designer specialising in non-fiction and academic titles. Shortlisted in 2016 for ABCD's non-fiction design award.

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