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Favourite Bookshelf > Best (And Worst) Cover Art

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message 1: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3494 comments Mod
Due to the flutter of discussion on cover art, I thought we could post our favourites here.... (plus the ones you love to hate!)


message 2: by Dan (new)

Dan Smith | 173 comments Well, seeing as this started out out (for me) as a discussion about 'The Behaviour of Moths' vs 'The Sister' as a title, then why not have a look at the covers? I reckon the 'Behaviour' cover is far better.
The Sister by Poppy Adams The Behaviour of Moths by Poppy Adams


message 3: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3494 comments Mod
So tiny, they're hard to see, but here's a few covers I've liked:

Little Bee by Chris Cleave The Children's Book by A.S. Byatt Pride and Prejudice and Zombies The Classic Regency Romance - Now with Ultraviolent Zombie Mayhem! by Seth Grahame-Smith Lord of the Flies by William Golding Carter Beats the Devil by Glen David Gold Vanity Fair A Novel Without a Hero (Penguin Summer Classics) by William Makepeace Thackeray


message 4: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3494 comments Mod
Dan wrote: "Well, seeing as this started out out (for me) as a discussion about 'The Behaviour of Moths' vs 'The Sister' as a title, then why not have a look at the covers? I reckon the 'Behaviour' cover is fa..."

Yeh, more contemporary and more quirky...


message 5: by Tuğçe (new)

Tuğçe Gökırmak (tugcenidasevin) | 49 comments Well I've liked,
The Magicians by Lev Grossman Sisters Red (Sisters Red, #1) by Jackson Pearce The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman


message 6: by Susan (new)

Susan Dan wrote: "Well, seeing as this started out out (for me) as a discussion about 'The Behaviour of Moths' vs 'The Sister' as a title, then why not have a look at the covers? I reckon the 'Behaviour' cover is fa..."

It' also so much more relevant to what the book is actually about.


message 7: by Susan (last edited Jan 07, 2011 02:02PM) (new)

Susan I like the cover of Sea of Poppies Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh by Amitav Ghosh.


message 8: by Em (new)

Em (emmap) | 2929 comments From the picture on here, The Behaviour of Moths by Poppy Adams looks a bit reminiscent of A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian by Marina Lewycka and Two Caravans by Marina Lewycka , to me anyway.

Not necessarily in this case but sometimes, it's as if they code certain types of books into a certain type of cover - either to indicate where the books been pigieon holed or else to emulate previously published books which have been successful.

I like this one...

The Summer Book by Tove Jansson


message 9: by Dan (new)

Dan Smith | 173 comments Liz wrote: "So tiny, they're hard to see, but here's a few covers I've liked:

Little Bee by Chris Cleave The Children's Book by A.S. Byatt [bookcover:Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: The Classic Reg..."


Hm, you like a macabre cover? My copy of Lord of The Flies has a different cover (less blood) which is very striking, but I can't find an image of it on Goodreads. It's one of my all time favourite books. Even when forced to read it at school I found it intriguing. Now, after many re-reads, I still love it. Amazing to think that it was rejected so many times before being published.


message 10: by Bill (new)

Bill | 2760 comments Interesting topic. I found this fairly difficult. However, there were certain books I picked up because the cover art attracted my attention first. I do like colourful covers and I tend to be an autumn person, so reds/ oranges often grab me. I started the Donna Leon books because the covers first caught my eye and then the summaries also sounded interesting. They aren't flashy covers, but there is something classic about them..
Uniform Justice (Commissario Brunetti #12) by Donna Leon and A Noble Radiance (Commissario Brunetti #7) by Donna Leon as examples

I also found Martin Walker's Bruno, Chief of Police interesting.. Bruno, Chief of Police by Martin Walker

The reissues of J.G. Ballards books caught my attention because of their simplicity.
Day of Creation by J.G. Ballard

Iain Banks' The Algebraist was the right colours and also had a nice simplicity. The Algebraist by Iain M. Banks

And I know that Alexander McCall Smith's The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #1) by Alexander McCall Smith caught my attention because of it's light, airiness.. Every book has great cover art..

Just a few examples anyways.. there are so many...


message 11: by Liz, Moderator (last edited Jan 09, 2011 06:14AM) (new)

Liz | 3494 comments Mod
Dan wrote: "Hm, you like a macabre cover? My copy of Lord of The Flies has a different cover (less blood) which is very striking, but I can't find an image of it on Goodreads. It's one of my all time favourite books. Even when forced to read it at school I found it intriguing. "

Well, I do have a dark streak - I like the subversive/humourous angle on the cover of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: The Classic Regency Romance - Now with Ultraviolent Zombie Mayhem! and I like the painting of the pig's head on Lord of the Flies it's very direct and does give a portent of things to come!

Lord of the Flies is superb , we had it as a school text too and it was the first time I read a required book in less than a week.

Interesting, I didn't know it was a struggle to get it published, back in the 50's. I don't know when this particular edition was published, but it was the copy I went out and bought for myself, so it's probably late 80's early 90's.

The cover also reminds me of the summer I worked at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. My brother was producing a very studenty play of 'Lord of the Flies' and I was doing props. Every day we had to go to the local abatoir (I kid you not), to pick up a fresh pig's head and some more blood and every night we had to bleach the costumes in the bath.... Not a show for the squeamish (or vegetarians) ;) Also, I wonder what the neighbours thought of all the bloody clothes we brought back to the flat.....


message 12: by Dan (last edited Jan 10, 2011 03:11AM) (new)

Dan Smith | 173 comments Well, if we're talking blood 'n' guts, I rmember reading a book called 'Eat them Alive' when I was at school. It was one of those books (like The Fog or The Rats) that did the rounds, passed from hand to hand and spoken about in hushed tones. The author was Pierce Nace. Sadly, I can't find a cover image on Goodreads, but it really was a shocker. A lurid green praying mantis with its maw splattered with blood and gore. It was an awful book. Anyway, I dug it up on Google and I've popped a link if you want to have a look. http://www.trashcity.org/ARTICLES/tc0...


message 13: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3494 comments Mod
Dan wrote: "Well, if we're talking blood 'n' guts, I rmember reading a book called 'Eat them Alive' when I was at school. It was one of those books (like The Fog or The Rats) that did the rounds, passed from h..."

I just read the summary - sounds hilarious and not one I'll be putting on my To Read List!

I read Junky by William S. Burroughs, recently. It came out in the 50's and the original cover is wonderful - definitely falls into the exploitation category...

Junkie by William S. Burroughs


Lynne - The Book Squirrel (squirrelsend) | 3625 comments I have a lot of the Richard Gordon's 'Doctor' series, some have great pictures dust jackets on them. I got them all from the book barn for £1 each. All are dated from around the 50's.
Unfortunately none of them are listed on Goodreads which is a shame.


message 15: by Em (new)

Em (emmap) | 2929 comments I like all of these Jeanette Winterson covers... The Powerbook by Jeanette Winterson
Gut Symmetries by Jeanette Winterson

There's also something quite simple but evocative about...
A Clockwork Orange  by Anthony Burgess


message 16: by Dan (new)

Dan Smith | 173 comments Em wrote: "I like all of these Jeanette Winterson covers...The Powerbook by Jeanette Winterson
Gut Symmetries by Jeanette Winterson

There's also something quite simple but evocative about...
[bookcover:A Clockwo..."


Never seen that 'Clockwork' cover before. Looks to be a real horrorshow glass of moloko plus velocet to peet before a nochy of the old ultra-violence.


message 17: by Em (new)

Em (emmap) | 2929 comments Ha! Yes Dan - couldn't have put in any better!
That and it's a wholesome image - glass of milk for a book which is anything but...


message 18: by Jo (new)

Jo The book I am reading now has good cover art Blood and Ice by Robert Masello


message 19: by Dan (new)

Dan Smith | 173 comments Em wrote: "Ha! Yes Dan - couldn't have put in any better!
That and it's a wholesome image - glass of milk for a book which is anything but..."


What a book, though, eh?


message 20: by Katie (new)

Katie | 82 comments When I'm browsing in a bookshop I do tend to pick up ones with what I think are good covers before reading the back (and sometimes the first few chapters as well).
An example is Twilight Twilight (Twilight, #1) by Stephenie Meyer Simple imagery but effective as it caught my eye (I picked it up before all the hype began)


message 21: by Dan (new)

Dan Smith | 173 comments Katie wrote: "When I'm browsing in a bookshop I do tend to pick up ones with what I think are good covers before reading the back (and sometimes the first few chapters as well).
An example is Twilight[bookcove..."


True. A simple and striking cover. What's inside isn't really my thing, though. Too much teenage angst, topaz eyes and sparkly skin.


message 22: by Em (new)

Em (emmap) | 2929 comments Jo wrote: "The book I am reading now has good cover art Blood and Ice by Robert Masello"

She looks like she could do with a good nights sleep though, in fact I think I resemble this at 5.30am on Monday mornings - scares the bus driver!

Speaking of Twilight I noticed

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen and Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë which are clearly aiming to encourage young twi-hards to discover the classics and find their hidden Bella! No bad thing I guess...

Dan, I don't think you're the target market for Twilight so Stephanie Meyer probably not losing sleep! I'm impressed you know about the sparkly skin though - are you a closet twilight reader?


message 23: by Dan (new)

Dan Smith | 173 comments Em wrote: "Jo wrote: "The book I am reading now has good cover art Blood and Ice by Robert Masello"

She looks like she could do with a good nights sleep though, in fact I think I resemble this at 5.30am ..."


Ha ha! Step out of the closet Dan, hold your Twilight high! Actually, I thought I'd check it out, partly because it's so popular and I wanted to see why, but also because I have daughter who has expressed an interest.

I'll read anything, me.


message 24: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3494 comments Mod
We'll be reading To Kill a Mockingbird for my local bookclub next month - I last read it over ten years ago, so I'm looking forward to a reread. Just spotted this new edition and like the cover....

To Kill a Mockingbird (50th Anniversary Edition) by Harper Lee


message 25: by Katie (new)

Katie | 82 comments Dan wrote: ...I thought I'd check it out, partly because it's so popular and I wanted to see why, but also because I have daughter who has expressed an interest.

I'll read anything, me...."


My dad did the same thing, asked if he could borrow the book, though he gave it back after having read a couple of pages.

I couldn't read absolutely anything. Horror I steer away from, plus if anything has a gory cover I'd hesitate to pick it up.


message 26: by Dan (new)

Dan Smith | 173 comments Katie wrote: "Dan wrote: ...I thought I'd check it out, partly because

..."


Twilight isn't horror - not in terms of its story, anyway!


message 27: by Tory (last edited Jan 20, 2011 01:44PM) (new)

Tory (nghtstlkr64) | 5 comments The Chinatown Death Cloud Peril by Paul Malmont This cover caught my eye. Between the art and the title I had to buy it.


message 28: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3494 comments Mod
Tory wrote: "The Chinatown Death Cloud Peril by Paul Malmont This cover caught my eye. Between the art and the title I had to buy it."

Fantastic! I just looked it up, sounds alot of fun...


message 29: by Katie (new)

Katie | 82 comments Dan wrote: Twilight isn't horror - not in terms of its story, anyway!"

I wasn't suggesting it's horror, it's more a kind of light dark teen romance.

My sentence referencing horror was just in relation to book covers in general. Though the latest twilight film could be horror if they followed the scenes accurately...


message 30: by Dan (new)

Dan Smith | 173 comments Katie wrote: "Dan wrote: Twilight isn't horror - not in terms of its story, anyway!"

I wasn't suggesting it's horror, it's more a kind of light dark teen romance.

My sentence referencing horror was just i..."


Funny you should say that - I've just read a review of the latest film and it suggests that this time they 'deliver'. There's no denying it - Stephanie Meyers has created something very popular.


message 31: by Andy (new)

Andy Bird | 223 comments Not exactly art but part of the cover, one of my particular bugbears is when the authors name is a lot larger/more prominent than the title of the book.

Makes it look like the author is more important than the book itself which, in my opinion, is the wrong way round. I want to know about the book first.

This does put me off a book.


message 32: by Dan (last edited Jan 23, 2011 09:17AM) (new)

Dan Smith | 173 comments Andy wrote: "Not exactly art but part of the cover, one of my particular bugbears is when the authors name is a lot larger/more prominent than the title of the book.

Makes it look like the author is more imp..."


That's marketing, I guess. Some authors have huge followings, and the name of the book isn't as important as letting their fans know that their favourite author has a new book out. It doesn't really bother me too much, but what does surprise me is something that's an extension of that - when the cover has a different author's name bigger than that of the actual author of the book. I saw a book cover advertising the contents as 'if you like DAN BROWN, you'll love this' and the actual author's name was beneath DAN BROWN in considerably smaller type. Now that's odd. If I'd written the book, I think I might be a bit miffed!


Lynne - The Book Squirrel (squirrelsend) | 3625 comments Em wrote: "Jo wrote: "The book I am reading now has good cover art Blood and Ice by Robert Masello"

She looks like she could do with a good nights sleep though, in fact I think I resemble this at 5.30am ..."


I managed to get these all but P & P for my daughter in law who is a twilight fan. They are for her birthday. She'll love them!


message 34: by Bill (new)

Bill | 2760 comments I bought one this weekend that had a catchy cover..

Kingsley Amis - The Riverside Villas Murder by Kingsley Amis


message 35: by Andy (new)

Andy Bird | 223 comments Stumbled on this in bbc iplayer, all about book covers book cover


message 36: by Helen (new)

Helen | 4238 comments The Harlequin I bought this solely because of the cover, then couldn't really decide if I liked it or not while reading. The a cover for another of hers gor me too.
I do miss covers on my kindle - I'm only 2 books in on that too.


message 37: by Andy (new)

Andy Bird | 223 comments Yes i agree, the Kindle should be more cover friendly. It does have covers but you have to go to them specifically, they should be the first page of the book.


message 38: by Helen (new)

Helen | 4238 comments I didn't know that, I like to look at a cover when I finish reading.


message 39: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3494 comments Mod
Andy wrote: "Yes i agree, the Kindle should be more cover friendly. It does have covers but you have to go to them specifically, they should be the first page of the book."

Absolutely, it's like not having the album art with your music - a considerable pleasure lost! How does the Kindle compare with other e-readers on that score? (Any one got a fancy iPad? I was impressed by a friends' one - loved the page turning, but didn't notice any cover art there either, but it may have been the way he had it set up.)

I organise my Goodreads books by the covers rather than in the table format - it feels far more as if I can actually summon the book up in front of me, rather than dealing with a dull old list!


message 40: by Susan (last edited Mar 22, 2011 10:44PM) (new)

Susan If you buy a book from the i store, the cover art is displayed on your 'shelves' on the i pad, but the free books from The Guttenberg Project have plain covers.
My i pad is the nearest thing I've had to a 'toy', since I was.a child, I love it, although it definatly hasn't fully replaced my laptop for some things.


message 41: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3494 comments Mod
Susan wrote: "If you buy a book from the i store, the cover art is displayed on your 'shelves' on the i pad, but the free books from The Guttenberg Project have plain covers.
My i pad is the nearest thing I've had to a 'toy', since I was.a child, I love it, although it definatly hasn't fully replaced my laptop for some things. ..."


Would love an iPad *sigh*....


message 42: by Helen (new)

Helen | 4238 comments I do like my kindle, despite lacking covers. I enjoy reading it on the bus - I never take paperbacks out as I don't like them getting bent. I find it easy to use and forget that I'm holding a machine.

I organise my goodread bookshelf by covers too.


message 43: by Em (new)

Em (emmap) | 2929 comments I liked this cover, reminds me of Tim Burton animations....

Anthropology by Dan Rhodes


message 44: by Robert (new)

Robert Clear (robertclear) | 29 comments I haven't read the book, but Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch has a very nice cover. I spotted it in the window as I was walking past Waterstones the other day!


message 45: by G (new)

G (g1983) | 5 comments I really love the old design of the Penguin books, the 'horizontal grid' design - there some pictures on here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penguin_...

My mum once bought me a mug with this design on it, I love it!


message 46: by Em (new)

Em (emmap) | 2929 comments That design is a classic!


message 47: by Helen (new)

Helen | 4238 comments When my dad left my mum, I remember her worrying about neighbours and him packing hundreds of penguin classics in their green and white covers into boxes. I'd never seen so many books with the same cover - I was 6, mine were all different so I guessed his were all the same book!


Lynne - The Book Squirrel (squirrelsend) | 3625 comments Gemma wrote: "I really love the old design of the Penguin books, the 'horizontal grid' design - there some pictures on here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penguin_...

My mum once bought me a mug with this d..."


I love the old Penguin book design too, I have lots of mugs related to books 9 of them are Penguin ones and I have some Ladybird book mugs too.


message 49: by Helen (new)

Helen | 4238 comments I've seen them in Waterstones, pretty iconic.


message 50: by Melki (new)

Melki For all fans of Penguin book covers, here is a wonderful book I purchased earlier this year:
Penguin 75

I realize many titles have different covers in the UK than they do in the States. Here are a few of my favs:
The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt , The Ballad of Lucy Whipple by Karen Cushman and Gullible's Travels The Adventures of a Bad Taste Tourist by Cash Peters


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