Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Book Cover Deja Vu... All Over Again

They (whoever they are) say you can't judge a book by it's cover, but I frequently do.  Sometimes the adage holds up and I'm surprised (for good or bad) by the tale within, and sometimes the cover art is the perfect hint to what's in store.  Granted, a simple picture can not fully convey an entire novel, but the artwork should at least be unique and have some reference to the story inside. 

Call it obsessive, nit-picky, quirky .... I prefer "finely honed observation skills".... whatever you call it, I have this weird attraction to spotting similarities in book covers. (It's a blessing...and a curse*).  These observations are usually followed by questions concerning the creative abilities of whoever designs book covers.

Actually Keris Stainton got me started several years ago (when she was editing Trashionista) by pointing out that there tend to be trends in book cover art.  She even discovered one instance in which the exact same photo (with various croppings) was used on multiple covers.  Some examples she mentioned were:

The "What the Frock?" trend:

The Cupcake trend:

I added what Keris called the "Back Off" trend:

Today, as I was browsing through blogs, I saw a review of The Mermaid's Mirror by L. K. Madigan and immediately thought "I've seen that cover before."  Unlikely as it may seem, I was able to search the cubby-holes of my brain and uncover the similar cover - The Peach Keeper, soon to be released from my favorite author, Sarah Addison Allen.


Now I'm curious to see if other kindred covers will appear.  Let me know if you spot any - or if you come across other trends.

*10 bonus points if you recognized the Monk reference.

1 comment:

  1. I love the covers on all of these, and many look like perfect summer reads to me. Naturally, I am thinking of warm weather after 40+" of snow and 2 degree weather today....LOL