Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Book. Cover. Don't Judge.

Actually.. Do. Do judge.

Do you ever hear someone say "Never judge a book by its cover" accompanied by a bit of a finger wag and stern eyebrow raising, and then feel a squirm of guilt when you think that you do get swayed by the pretty, shiny covers on all the books in your bookshelf? Well I'm here to say Stop Feeling The Guilt.

This is the 21st century. Thousands of books (despite the doom and gloom) are published every year. Publishing companies spend $$$ on getting just the right cover. Why? Because it makes a difference. In a world where we are spoilt for choice, we're going to use every bit of information we can get to make a decision on what to read. Including the pretty shiny embossed covers.

And lets face it, for those of us who still buy the physical book rather than the ebook, part of the joy is being able to add it to your bookshelf when you've finished and still be able to admire it.

Don't get me wrong, covers aren't the only factor in my decision making process, but a book with an uninteresting cover is unlikely to get a second glance when I'm browsing at the bookstore.

Here's a few books I've bought lately with covers I love:

Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood
by Eileen Cook
Hex Hall
by Rachel Hawkins
by Alison Goodman

Do you judge books by their cover? Have you ever bought a book based solely on its cover? What's your favourite cover of all time?


  1. oooh. I love the cover for Hex Hall! I have to say, when I buy a physical book, or when I "shop" at the bookstore or at Target for what I want to purchase on the Kindle, I judge by the cover. I do the same with movies and movie posters. I'll go see it if the movie poster is awesome.

    As for a favorite...I'm not sure. I don't think I could pick.

  2. Ooh, I love pretty covers. I almost think it makes me read a book a little differently--the cover is the first indication of what the tone of the book should be like. That being said, lots of books don't seem to match the tone of the cover...hmm.

    I'm not sure of an all-time fave, but recently...I thought the Matched cover was pretty. Across the Universe is pretty cool too.

  3. There's no getting around it-- a great cover might not mean a great book, but it means it gets my attention.

    I love the cover from Eon! I've never heard of it, but I'm going to look it up now.

    I have a thing for simplistic covers. Maggie mentioned Matched, and I liked that one too. I also like the covers for Dan Wells' I Am Not a Serial Killer and Mr. Monster. Awesome books to match great covers!

  4. ALL THE TIME! I have a process when picking out my books but first thing on the list is that I need to like the cover. And it has yet to fail me. From time to time I pick up covers of books that I think are ugly and go through the rest of my process and always find that I really have to interest in the book, about 15% of the time that also happen with books that I do like the cover of but the numbers are in favor of me choosing a book my its cover.

    I think my favorite cover of all time is A Great And Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray, really all of the trilogy has great covers but I love the first one.