Reading that this edition’s cover art was by Edward Gorey doesn’t really sink in at first: so was the American’s edition – no big deal. It’s not until you see the cover do you realize that Hutchinson went all out on this one and took the black-and-white frontispiece from the edition published by Dial, colorized it, and then set it off within an oval frame on a field of black.
There are around fifteen different windows on the house – from the front door to the top of the house and the fourth floor circular cupola window – and all have been lit with vibrant yellow. Someone with a green fluorescent marker tinted the leafy shrubs and trees surrounding the house as well as the oval frame, returning briefly to the yellow to smudge the crescent moon in the sky. Maybe it's Mrs.Zimmermann's looming presence in the story or, more likely, the American edition by Dial but we always associate purple with this book.
Someone in one of our discussion groups once mentioned the font and layout of the book’s titles reminded them of an episode of The Waltons. Go figure.
One unique thing about this edition is that its back cover is a black-and-white still from the then-recent Children's Film Foundation project, The Battle of Billy's Pond, and serves as a promotion for its novelization. Screenonline.org.uk says the plot of this 1976 production has the “usual high-jinks and slapstick expected of a Children's Film Foundation production” but is a bit more serious in tone as two young boys investigate industrial waste polluting of their favorite fishing pond.