In order to get my head around the novel content, and start thinking about potential ideas for the cover design, I drew out a big spider diagram containing background information about the setting and time that the novel takes place alongside recurring themes, symbols and motifs that can be observed throughout, picking out key quotes relating to this.
As this is a shorter brief for me, I wanted to get on with the design and so started up sketching out my idea. My idea is based upon a combination of some recurring themes and symbols found in the novel.
The gun, being the murder weapon throughout the duration of the novel, and the smoke which contorts into an orchid is reminiscent of a quote early on in the novel:
"they are nasty things. Their flesh is too much like the flesh of men. And their perfume has the rotten sweetness of a prostitute."
The orchid is furthermore symbolic to the portrayal of the female characters in the novel whilst suggestive of their participation in the murder scenes...
Having done a rough sketch of my idea, I redrew it neatly, keeping in mind the Saul Bass style illustration with block roughly (almost hand-drawn) shapes to put together an image
Having been inspired by the hand-rendered typography placed within the shapes and images, I though this would be a relevant addition to the contemporary style design.