I wanted so desperately to do full justice to your words, Clare, whilst creating something eye-catching.

Within the stop-frame rectangle I introduced some mauve that may, or may not, be a glimpsed landscape. This seemed to add to the flickering mystery; that sense of something tantalisingly tangible, but just out of reach.

The new colouring and forms for ‘Clare Best’ and ‘a memoir’ have done something wonderful to the mauve rectangle: it fizzes now like a dishwasher tablet with everything else crackling around it.

It is SUCH a relief to hear you like it. I felt an unusual investment in this book, not least because I loved the writing so much, and I wanted to do it justice.



I feel so many things – primarily real joy. I knew you’d make something brilliant and fitting that no one else could have done.

I love the aspects that make me think ‘thriller’. I love the colours – the richness and softness. The danger of them. I love the way the letters kind of feather into/out of the rest, are one with the background, yet not. I love that small window onto – what? Mauveness, pastness, greater clarity, shining water, healing, so many other things. And of course I love how much black there is, perfectly in balance with the colours and the rhythm of the lettering.

The sideways lettering forces you to see the letters purely as shapes. You can’t help noticing the repeated letter forms – especially the ‘S’s, the ‘T’s and the ‘I’s. And how the letters LI stand out against black and almost make LIE.

I dreamt about the cover last night. As though reality weren’t enough. It was a marvellous dream – I was inside the cover world, surrounded by all the colours and the small spaces and windows. It felt safe and exciting at the same time.

Oh, this is spectacular! Almost edible!

THE MISSING LIST Publication 18th September 2018

Neil Gower:
Clare Best: