WHAT’S IN A COVER?


Well, besides the obvious answer of ‘duh, a book, silly’?

I’ve been looking a lot at book covers lately … on publishing websites … on authors’ blogs … and each time my eyes have landed on a cover that made me want to check out the content, I’ve paused.

Why?

To try and determine what it is about the cover that caught my eye, what appealed to me, what beckoned and enticed me to slip inside.

Primarily, I focused on the sites for romance—mostly because that’s the genre my first novel is (sub-genre: paranormal)—and found myself surprised how many of them seem to rely on half-naked beings to lure you inside.  I’m not complaining.  Not in the slightest.  I’ve no aversion to a little flesh.  However, as it is worlds away from the cover art I’d inserted into my head for my novel, it gave me enough pork to chew over … or however the saying goes.

This is mostly because the book that most appealed to me had a man and a woman in lustful pose, but the fantastic artwork really brought them to life.

 

Here’s a couple of links to artwork I wouldn’t scoff at if offered to me for my novels:

http://www.harpercollins.com/browseinside/index.aspx?isbn13=9780061894572

The cover of Lynsay Sands “Hungry For You” just begs to be opened.  I love the colours, the font, the imagery … okay, pretty much everything about this cover.

http://samhainpublishing.com/romance/demon-dreamer

“Demon Dreamer” by Vivi Anna is another example of attractive colours and half-decent photograph imaging that draws the eye.

http://www.alexandraivy.com/Devouredbydarkness.htm

Alexandra Ivy’s “Devoured By Darkness”—basically, I’d quite happily devour that dude on the front cover.

 

Notice a pattern?  Hmmm, like the ones that have attracted me like shiny stuff to a magpie all have flesh on offer?  Is this the reason I like the look of them.  I dunno.

But, as I’m reaching a point where producing a book cover could become a choice I have to make, this is all part of the package I need to be looking at.

They say don’t judge a book by its cover.  That saying is utter RUBBISH!  If the cover doesn’t grab the reader, then that’s as far as you’ll get them.  The cover for your book is of the UTMOST importance.  In my opinion anyway.

What’s your thoughts on book covers, their appeal, their importance?  What kind of covers catch your eye?  Did the samples I shared do anything to entice you?  Or is it simply down to personal preference and the truth that ‘You’ll never catch ‘em all’?

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8 thoughts on “WHAT’S IN A COVER?

  1. Completely important … sadly … almost as much as the story itself … since it’s the FIRST draw unless someone has HIGHLY recommended it … and … well … even then. 🙂

  2. Couldn’t agree more. Books recommended (highly) almost get a free pass to my atttention. Otherwise, I either have to love the author, or rely on the attraction of the door to the words 🙂

  3. While the cover of a book can never promise its contents will be liked or completely read, an undistinguished cover might doom it to never being read at all. As stated, unless the author is already known, the cover is the first thing to grab the attention.

    Just my thoughts.

    http://timkeen40.wordpress.com

  4. I’ll swim against the current and state that I don’t find myself that influenced by coverst. Usually I decide I want a book, cover unseen. A bad cover will not deter me if I’ve already heard of the book nor will a pretty cover on an unknown book woo me into a purchase. I don’t do much “free-browsing” at the book store. I usually have an idea of what I want from having read the web. I like to run my fingers over my potential candidates though, so trips to B&N are still de rigeur.

    That being said, I do like to look at them. My faves now are the Lauren Kate and Cassandra Clare covers and the Steampunk covers (Scott Westerfeld and Gail Carringer). I LUST after the male model on the cover of Jill Myles’ Gentlemen Prefer Succubi–I could look at that dude all day long.

    Not a fan of headless mantitty nor ladies with their dresses falling off or hiked way up.

    The ones you linked, I liked, especially the first, blue one.

    1. This is not that far from my own decision making, Claire. I am a real stickler for going for authors I already know and love. In their cases, I probably wouldn’t even look at the cover because it’s what’s on the inside I’m interested in … but I already know what to expect, already know I’ll like it, and that’s the reason I picked it up in the first place.
      A first time author doesn’t have that luxury. They have to rely on those inital buyers of their books/readers, then hope they enjoy it–enough to talk about it to their buddies, or even buy copies for people they know. However, in order for that very first copy to be bought by someone who isn’t friends or family, it has to have an eye-catching cover (as well as an interesting blurb, and a decent title)–or you’ve fallen at the first hurdle, surely?
      Not disagreeing with you, just looking at it from the perspective of the first time author who wants to make that sale 🙂

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