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The Nightwalker – Atheneum book jacket

Contributed by Stephen Coles on Nov 25th, 2019. Artwork published in .
The Nightwalker – Atheneum book jacket 1
Source: Image: AshurBooks. License: All Rights Reserved.

Prolific book jacket designer Lawrence Ratzkin was fond of blackletter type, as well as ITC Honda, Ronné Bonder and Tom Carnase’s 1970 “grayletter” with equal parts fraktur and roman sans serif.

The Nightwalker – Atheneum book jacket 2
Source: Photo: Stephen Coles. Sample from The ITC Typeface Collection, 1980. License: All Rights Reserved.

Ratzkin used a couple alternates for this tight lockup, including a t that I would argue is much better than ITC Honda’s default version, and which tucks neatly into the adjacent w. The standard looped k is replaced with the alternate roman form.

Unfortunately, the current digital version of ITC Honda is missing all eight of the alternates available in the original phototype version. The sample below shows what this headline would look like in the digital font. You can see why the alt t really came in handy.

The Nightwalker – Atheneum book jacket 3
Photo: Stephen Coles. License: Public Domain.


  • ITC Honda
  • Erbar-Grotesk




Artwork location

1 Comment on “The Nightwalker – Atheneum book jacket”

  1. Seeing this makes me wonder whether this uncredited cover for a Kafka compilation published in NYC in 1983 was designed by Ratzkin, too. It uses the alternate a, r, and t.

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