How to advertise Asterix
By MICHAEL CAINES
As mentioned before on this blog, the business of selling books encourages some curious habits – relying time and again on the same old cover designs, or, when reissuing a forgotten "modern classic", finding an unforgotten name to offer a line or two of endorsement. It's striking how small a part words themselves play in this aspect of publishing.
See above and below for a contrasting example of the art of the book advertisement, for the Asterix books of René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo. They appear on opposing pages of the TLS of October 16, 1969 (a time when the paper still reviewed children's books). Aren't they – busy? And cheeky, too: "We have paid for them!".
But perhaps in the end this proved to be no way to persuade people that the "strip cartoon can be a genuine art form". It's a while since anybody took out an advertisement in the TLS that looked like this . . . .