Jacqui Hicks has experienced a frustrating time of it trying to purchase the new edition of Equus (with the cover by me) from the Penguin online bookstore. She writes at the Artlog this morning:

‘Hmmm… so I clicked ‘available here’ and ordered direct from Penguin and was so excited when the package arrived, only to find what they sent isn’t the image on their advert but a photo of some half naked youth and a horse. A tad disappointing. Going to ring them up and see if this is purely oversight and whether they’ll exchange. Will post update later.’

Jacqui’s later update reads:

‘OK, so the phone number for Penguin is:

0870 607 7600

A very nice woman said very sorry can’t guarantee what front you will get on the book we send out, even though the advertised one is Clive’s. It just depends what they have in the warehouse. Can’t guarantee when it will appear in the shops either, but did give me a freepost address to send the copy back. Does seem a bit daft to advertise the new cover then. If I order a blouse having seen it on the internet I do expect to get the one I saw, not something they decide to pull out of the warehouse. Oh well, if anyone spots Clive’s version in any bookshops, do let us all know!’

I’m not quite sure how to resolve this, though I may try dropping a line to my contact at Penguin to see if there’s any way around it. If there’s any news, I’ll post about it here. But in the meantime, like Jacqui says, if anyone out there sees copies of the edition in bookshop, please let us know. (And my thanks to Jacqui for flagging the problem.)

UPDATE  16/04/13

Thanks to John Gamblin, we now know that Penguin jumped the gun by putting up an image of the new cover at their online bookstore. It looks as though it will be removed until such time as the book really is ready for dispatch. So, the wait goes on.

UPDATE  19/04/13

Today I had this e-mail from Isabelle de Cat at Penguin. She explains what happened, and promises the book in August.

‘Dear Clive
Many thanks for your message and for alerting us to the cover issue.
After investigating with my production department, it seems that the re-print date of the book had been unexpectedly rescheduled, and that the cover could not be changed just yet. Unfortunately this was done without us knowing, hence the new cover design had been circulating still with our online suppliers.
According to our printers and the production department, the next re-print is now scheduled for August this year, when your beautiful cover will finally come to life!
We have now updated the circulating cover images with our suppliers, and no one should be mislead anymore until the new cover is printed.
I very much apologise for the inconvenience caused to you and your supporters.
Kind regards,

Isabelle De Cat
Art Editor – Penguin Press


10 thoughts on “Caution!

  1. I havn’t ordered my copy yet, so i’m very grateful for the warnings.

    But having just checked on the Waterstones website they have Clive’s version listed:

    However, after pasting the ISBN number quoted on Waterstones into Amazon it brings up the wrong covered copy which everyone is receiving:

    So it might be affecting more online orders than just through Penguin’s website?!

    • Oh crikey, what a mess. Peter, I’m waiting to hear back from my contact at Penguin. I hope that something may be done about this, or we’ll all just be waiting to see the book on the shelves of our local shops, which might take a long time while the old stock is used up first. At this rate by the time my design hits the shelves, they’ll be thinking about re-designing it again!

      Thanks for filling us in, Peter.


    • Mmm, I would imagine so. It’s a global brand. But if there’s a problem, let me know and I could get one here and send it to you. However, I don’t have a copy of my own yet, and won’t order any unless they can solve the problem at the warehouse and send out the new edition.

  2. Unfortunatley I have experienced the same disappointment as Jacqui. I spoke to a lady on Friday who said she would get someone to call me on Friday afternoon. Needless to say this did not happen. I have just called again and am told that they are discussing this issue with the publisher and hope to get back to me later today.

    I will be in Chipping Campden today but will try and update this evening.

    • John, thank you for letting me know the problem is ongoing. I’m just writing to the picture editor who was my contact for the job, as clearly this is going to continue to be a frustration for all concerned unless something is done about it. I’d be most obliged if you updated me when/if you hear back from the supplier.

      My apologies for your disappointment.

          • Penguin called this afternoon. All very apologetic as they ‘jumped the gun’ by advertising your new cover on their website. I am to return book and they will call when the new release date is clarified with the publisher.
            It will be worth the wait 😉

            • Thank you John. Glad to hear that Penguin got back to you. I’m relieved to hear you think it’ll have been worth the wait when you finally get your copy of the play in its new livery, given the inconvenience you’ve been put to.

              Very Best

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