The book is sewn on tapes and is covered in dark-grey goatskin with multiple onlays and inlays of various coloured leathers and suede.
The top edge of the book and the hand-tooling to the spine are gilt in palladium leaf. Headbands are sewn in silk. The endpapers are leather-jointed with suede flyleaves and proof-printed paper doublures. The binding is wrapped in a cloth chemise and housed in a leather-edged slipcase.
The two opposing, stretched faces are multi-faceted and contain many references from the novel. The Enfield Tennis Academy is alluded to by the use of a ball and racket, which simultaneously become the eyes of the two characters. The ability of the protagonist Hal Incandenza to recite large tracts of the Oxford English Dictionary is emulated by the sections of reverse-transferred type.
The words are definitions taken from the Oxford English Dictionary of the words Entertainment, Infinite, and Jest. The ‘entertainment’ is visible across the front and back covers as a cassette tape, encapsulating the characters within it.
Inside, the tooled doublures echo the huge hazardous waste dump located in southeast Canada known to the Americans as the Great Concavity. This image is offset onto the suede opposite to represent the Canadians’ interpretation of the dump, which is known to them, ironically, as the Great Convexity.
The novel’s use of the ‘year of subsidised time’, when corporate sponsors add their name to a year, is echoed by the slanting title on the spine, emulating a corporate logo.