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Book covers get tattooed

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Tattoo artists and classic works of modern fiction don't sound like the most natural of pairings, but they have been brought together in true style for a project launched by Penguin books this summer.

The UK publishing house has teamed up with six of the world's leading tattoo artists to redesign the covers for its favourite British novels for the Penguin Ink project. Beloved classic such as The Accidental by Ali Smith and Zadie Smith's White Teeth have been given a dynamic new facelift thanks to the work of illustrators more used to etching on human skin.

The six chosen artists include Lynn Akura, a Brighton-based tattoo artist who runs her own shop, Magnum Opus Tattoo, and Judd Ripley, an artist from Copenhagen who works full-time in his family tattoo parlour.

The project builds on the success of a tattoo-based literature series by Penguin in America last year.

The resulting book covers, which you can see below, present a brilliant fusion of vivid imagery and literature for stories that conjure up both in equal measure.

ABOVE LEFT: Notes On A Scandal by Zoë Heller, designed by London-based tattoo artist Valerie Vargas

ABOVE RIGHT: White Teeth by Zadie Smith, designed by Brighton-based tattoo artist Lynn Akura

ABOVE LEFT: The Accidental by Ali Smith, designed by Judd Ripley, who runs his own tattoo parlour in Copenhagen

ABOVE RIGHT: The Book Of Dave by Will Self, designed by London-based artist Duncan X

ABOVE LEFT: The Rotters' Club by Jonathan Coe, designed by Hans Van Der Sluys, a tattooer from Amsterdam

ABOVE RIGHT: High Fidelity by Nick Hornby, designed by Russ Abbott, a tattoo artist from Atlanta

Take a look at each of the amazing tattoo-inspired cover artworks in more detail below...

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