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Cover Reviews > Cover review - Oligarch series

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message 1: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 4 comments Hi Guys,

Hope this group is alive and doing reviews. I like my covers and I think they convey accurately the purport of the books, but I'm not sure whether most potential readers share my perverted taste -:), so I'd really appreciate if you can take a look and tell me what you think.
Rise of an Oligarch by Carlito Sofer Mortal Showdown by Nik Krasno

Also, for some reason as a thumbnail the covers look blurred. I don't really know how to describe the problem, but when you search on Amazon, using the word 'oligarch' on the list of search result my cover looks really blurred.

Does anyone know why it happens?

Thanks in advance,

Nik Krasno


message 2: by Harald, The Swimmer (new)

Harald | 387 comments Mod
Hi Nik! Yep, still alive and kicking here. So let's see…

"Rise of an Oligarch" is bold and eye-catching. It's "cartoonish," but if that's your style or taste, go with it! One comment is that the strange lettering—are you going for a Ukrainian-Cyrillic feel?— is a little odd, but in small thumbnail size, the main title actually reads pretty well. Not so much the subtitle or the author names. Might consider increasing at least the size of the author names.

"Mortal Showdown" is also bold and eye-catching, but your author name is very small for thumbnail views. And the yellow "$" and hammer-and-sickle get lost immediately on white shirts. And outlining the main-title letters does not help you; you could skip that.

RE: BLURRY… On Goodreads (where they link from here) the covers look sharp on my screen (in all sizes). On Amazon, both covers on Book Detail pages look fine (after the image settles in). But the back cover of "Oligarch" is unreadable with white or grey on bright red. So, on my system (iMac desktop), the covers themselves are NOT blurry. However, like you say, in search list for "Oligarch" your "Rise of" is "blocky." If Amazon is taking from your cover art, not sure why that is unless your cover art is too small. FYI: cover art should be at least x2500-x2700 pixels on the LONG side. Are yours?

Hope this helps!


message 3: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 4 comments Hi Harald,

Thanks a lot for such a comprehensive review! It helps a lot!
So, basically allowing for you reservations above, you are "for" the covers?
Yeah, the idea was to insert some cyrillics into English fonts, but to leave it still readable of course. I don't know whether it was designed to mimick our cover (probably - not), but Ben Mezrich - a best selling author, released his Oligarch after us, while his designers used the similar idea:
Once Upon a Time in Russia The Rise of the Oligarchs—A True Story of Ambition, Wealth, Betrayal, and Murder by Ben Mezrich

For all I know, the designer had done everything according to Amazon's instructions, but I was told that Amazon when downsizing the covers into thumbnails doesn't cope well with black on bright red and some other combinations. For that reason, by the way the same designer inserted the outlining on "Mortal...", just to separate black and red a bit and to reduce blurring or blocking...


message 4: by Harald, The Swimmer (new)

Harald | 387 comments Mod
Hi Nik,

Not sure if I'm "for" or "against" your covers. But there is a big difference when compared to the Ben Mezrich cover. His has a more normal "Photoshop feel" with photo elements and lots of blending and gradations. By contrast, yours are "flatter", meaning more like vector art (flat colors in large spaces), which is more like cartoon style.

And now I remember... there is something about Amazon reductions tending to "block" when using certain colors (or maybe it was large, flat color areas — can't quite remember where I heard that; maybe here!)

Maybe try a different cover treatment and see?


message 5: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 4 comments Hi Harald,

Thanks for the additional input.
Yep, I'm running sort of a poll about my covers on SIA group and it looks like about 70-80% have certain reservations about them, so I might just order re-designing or certain changes, basing on what you suggest and other recurrent comments


message 6: by Harald, The Swimmer (new)

Harald | 387 comments Mod
Sounds like a plan, Nik. Good luck with it. And show us any revisions when you have them.

(FYI: we started out over on SIA group)


message 7: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 4 comments Great, thanks for all the help and advice, Harald!


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