Judging a book by it’s cover

10 Aug

I’ve been thinking alot about cover art lately and what exactly it is that makes a great cover. I know for me I have my auto-buy authors but after that it’s the cover that draws me in and then of course I check out the back of the book blurb and if there’s an excerpt well I always check that out too, but a good cover definitely grabs my attention.

Now with that in mind I’m curious what it is that appeals to other people besides just me. When you are picking up a book, do you immediately want to know from the cover what genre it is? With a lot of covers there is more of a scene that gives you an idea of where the book takes place but not necessarily what genre it is, for example you can tell it takes place in the mountains but don’t know if it’s a romance or a suspense type of story.

Since you’re reading this blog post I’m going to assume you’re a fan of romance books, *grin* so when you’re picking up a romance book what is it you’re looking for? Are you looking for the super hot cover with the uber sexy mancandy, the half-naked couple (or more *waggles eyebrows*) or do you prefer something a little less smoking on the cover?
I admit I’m a little torn, sometimes I really like the hot covers and sometimes I like something a little less steamy even though the heat level in the book might be the same, go figure. (Although it does occasionally throw me off if the cover is really hot and the book isn’t, LOL , but that might just be me.)  I haven’t quite pinpointed what it is about certain book covers that draws me in, I just know it worked for me and I wanted to know more about the book.

I’d love to know what it is that appeals to as a reader when it comes to book covers. Is it the colour combinations or font choices? Or maybe having a scene on the cover rather than just people? The gorgeous sexy people? Or maybe it’s something else entirely.

7 Responses to “Judging a book by it’s cover”

  1. MadisonJEdwards August 10, 2012 at 6:39 am #

    I’m a cover girl. That’s what draws my eye. Classic book buyer – flip to the back, read the blurb. If I’m still torn, I’ll read a bit of the first chapter. (Digital samples I almost ALWAYS read the first chapter because it’s so easy to do so)

  2. danijace August 10, 2012 at 8:58 am #

    I’m a photo and art buff making me a total cover addict. I dislike e-readers not because of the tactical loss, but the lack of visual reference when “opening” the book. Although I love “man candy” covers, it’s amazing how a simple idea can convery the essense of a book, like Shades of Grey. Covers draw me in to read the blurb and then if I’m interested, I’ll check out a sample chapter.

  3. Marilyn Campbell August 10, 2012 at 9:45 am #

    Thanks for asking this question Lauren – it seems the motivation of readers’ choices changes from time to time so it’s always good to get the latest thoughts!

  4. Welkin C. August 10, 2012 at 4:35 pm #

    I’m attracted by the colors used on covers, and am more inclined to pick up one with more vibrant and dramatic colors and compositions. If there’s a couple depicted, I usually go for the ones with a heroine with either the same color hair as mine, or with auburn hair, and a hero with dark hair and the type physique I find attractive. The blurb really decides whether I read it more than the cover does though. If the characters sound boring and their story sounds too ordinary it turns me off. If I wanted to see ordinary I’d go sit at an outdoors cafe and watch couples walk by. The sexier the blurb, the better. If I can flip to a random page in the center of the book and find something sexy right away, I’ve hit the jackpot.

  5. Julie August 11, 2012 at 1:56 pm #

    I like a more “mysterious” smokey type of book cover. It lures me in. If it depicts something about the book an era or a genre like fantasy that’s okay. Everybody is so different as to what they find physically appealing that to put a face to the characters takes some of the fun out of reading…using your imagination. You can describe the characters in the book but the way on person envisions those details vary. I hate to say this but I think most pictures or photos that give a lot of detail look “cheap”. I love eye candy too but I prefer to look at somewhere else.

    • shannonemmel August 15, 2012 at 7:51 pm #

      Great comment, Welkin! I like your perspective…


    • shannonemmel August 16, 2012 at 7:55 am #

      Also a great point, Julie!

      Thanks for your comment…

      –Shannon Emmel

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