I buy books because of the covers all the time. All the time! Book covers fascinate me; they’re an art form done well. Done poorly, and they can really tank a book, too. My worst cover (which shall remain nameless) had the worst sales, too…until word-of-mouth took care of that, happily. For the record, My One and Only’s cover is my most favorite of all.
Like every author I’ve ever met, book covers are incredibly important to me. In fact, this very day, I’ll be talking to my editors about my next book cover. My publisher is quite nice and shows me the concepts beforehand, and we go back and forth a bit. I like having a dog on the cover, since it sets my books apart from the many other contemporaries out there. As an author and a reader, I prefer not to see the faces of the hero and heroine, because what if they don’t look like how I imagine them? But how can you keep doing the same thing over and over and not have the book covers feel tired? I’m not sure.
There are trends in book covers, too. Heavens, look at all the 50 Shades of Grey references out there…I think there should be a separate section for “Books about Kinky Sex Featuring Black & White Menswear on the Covers.” The marketing geniuses at Ms. James’s publisher should get a medal, I think, packaging that book the way they did.
Historical covers recently began focusing on the gorgeous dresses, and more power to that trend. Granted, I’d buy a Sherry Thomas novel even if the cover showed pictures of donkeys, but still. This cover is sumptuous.
Here’s a cover that struck me as really interesting and evocative. I don’t know what this book is about, but I downloaded it yesterday. It’s self-published, but it looks very professionally done, which is nice to see. Either the author is gifted in graphic design, or she hired someone who was.
Here’s a book I would never read based on the cover alone. For the record, I’m a huge fan of Jonathan Tropper and even wrote him a fan letter (he has yet to respond…hmmmph), and I did read this book, but it was in spite of the cover, not because of it.
Can you remember the last book you bought just because of the cover? Or a book you read in spite of the cover? How about your favorite book cover of all time? I’d love to hear your thoughts!