New York Review Books is reissuing the books of Kingsley Amis, and even though Amis was a quintessentially English writer, the person the editors chose to design the book jackets for the series lives in south Minneapolis.

Illustrator and writer Eric Hanson began the job by re-reading all of Amis' novels, "which I found as richly amusing as ever," he said in a blog post.

First up was "Lucky Jim," Amis' comic novel about Jim Dixon, a hapless professor at a minor English college; pub date for that is Oct. 2. It will be followed by the Booker Prize-winning "The Old Devils," about a group of elderly friends who are blithely drinking their dotage away when one of them--well, drops dead.

 "I did several dozen drawings of Jim Dixon to start," Hanson wrote on his blog. "I drew him with a pint in his hand, with a book, wearing a jaundiced expression, a bilious expression, a world-weary expression. Then I decided to do the reader a favor and let them visualize Lucky Jim how they liked. I turned him volte face, striding up a long sidewalk toward the college."

Hanson is the author of "A Book of Ages," a collection of fascinating anecdotes and moments by famous people, at least one for every day of the year.  His illustrations appear frequently in the New York Times.


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