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General and Chat > Judging a book by its cover...

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message 1: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 8 comments Hi All, I joined this group a few months back and have been enjoying hearing what people are reading and recommending. I read all kinds of dystopian fiction and have written a YA one which will be released next year (in Australia, by a small publisher). No, am not here to self-promote. What I am after is some opinions on book covers ... I've been asked to think about what I'd like for mine and I thought it would be great to get a sense of what book covers really "worked" for you, or not. I seem to see a lot of dystopian covers which have ruined cities or smoke in the distance ... Any things you hate on a book cover? Or your favourite book cover of all time?
Thanks for any thoughts you have...
Cheers,
Rachel


message 2: by Empress, Seeker of wonders (new)

Empress (the_empress) | 1215 comments Mod
Hi Rachel.

I find that a book cover often helps me to determine the sub-genre of the book. For example ruined cities could represent a disaster or war based oppressor. Would that be the case with your story?


message 3: by D20 (new)

D20 | 11 comments It's worth getting a professional cover. The one thing that really puts me off is seeing a cartoony person slapped onto a background.

Looking at a few examples from a Dystopia list and completely ignoring whether I've ever heard of or read the stories, going on cover alone, these draw my interest:
The Maze Runner (The Maze Runner, #1) by James Dashner The 5th Wave (The 5th Wave, #1) by Rick Yancey The Darkest Minds (The Darkest Minds, #1) by Alexandra Bracken The City, Not Long After by Pat Murphy The God Hater by Bill Myers

These I dismiss out of hand based solely on the cover:
Zombies Vs. Unicorns by Holly Black Moongazer by Mari Mancusi Globalia by Jean-Christophe Rufin Malice (Malice, #1) by Chris Wooding Zombie Blondes by Brian James


message 4: by Empress, Seeker of wonders (new)

Empress (the_empress) | 1215 comments Mod
Or a semi-professional. What I really enjoy is when the cover shows an element of the book. Than as I read my mind associates with the cover and I am discovering the book through the eyes of the artists.
What I don't like is being mislead by the cover, for example having something irrelevant the book on it.

While the cover is important I can overlook a cover that does not grab my attention. It does not need to be the mos beautiful or unique cover, however a badly made cover can be a bit of a turn-off. An none of the above examples fall into that (the animations).
If a book picks up popularity a change in cover is not so difficult there days at least where ebooks are concerned however the edition will stay on GR.


message 5: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 8 comments Empress wrote: "Or a semi-professional. What I really enjoy is when the cover shows an element of the book. Than as I read my mind associates with the cover and I am discovering the book through the eyes of the ar..."

Empress wrote: "Hi Rachel.

I find that a book cover often helps me to determine the sub-genre of the book. For example ruined cities could represent a disaster or war based oppressor. Would that be the case with..."


Yes, my book cover will be designed by the publisher's designing team so don't think there is an issue regarding professionalism. I totally agree that good writing comes first ... and then the cover can, hopefully, echo the ideas of the book. My publisher has just asked for feedback re what I think does or doesn't work. Thanks for your thoughts. Really valuable (and sorry for delay in responding but am on the other side of the world so you're probably sleeping right now :))


message 6: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 8 comments D20 wrote: "It's worth getting a professional cover. The one thing that really puts me off is seeing a cartoony person slapped onto a background.

Looking at a few examples from a Dystopia list and completely ..."


D20 wrote: "It's worth getting a professional cover. The one thing that really puts me off is seeing a cartoony person slapped onto a background.

Looking at a few examples from a Dystopia list and completely ..."


Thanks so much D20! I agree about things looking "cartoony" and I do think you can be put off a book if it doesn't look professional (because it makes you wonder how much time has been put into the writing as well). I do think the city ruins thing can work if it is the right book - I guess it just has become so common sometimes it seems to be everywhere... Thanks for taking the time to respond - I really appreciate it (and, again, sorry for the delay in replying but think we're in different time zones ...::)


message 7: by D20 (new)

D20 | 11 comments No problem. You definitely want the cover to give an accurate impression of the story. City ruins is becoming over used IMO. Depends what your disaster is.


message 8: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 8 comments Hi Empress and D20,
So, my book cover is out - one year later ... Would love to know if you think it works!

River Stone by Rachel Hennessy


message 9: by ClassicPink (new)

ClassicPink | 2 comments Maybe this isn’t helpful (I’ll be the first to say it) but I actually don’t judge books by their covers. In my experience when a cover is awesome the book isn’t nearly as good. The Hunger Games has a very simple cover and became a phenomenal dystopian series that the world now knows.


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