7 Covers Gail Loves & Why (Important for Writers)

I’ve been thinking a great deal about cover art recently. For no particular reason, Gentle Reader, just because. It’s no secret that, no matter what the words within, cover art counts for a large majority of sales in my business.

All too often you see authors complaining about cover art, I actually really like most of mine. Even those that initially disappointed me I learned to appreciate eventually. So this is not going to be a blog about that.

As I noodle about my daily toils, I encounter any number of books the large variety of which have covers that, frankly, turn me off. I don’t want to be one of those people who doesn’t buy because of the cover. My favorite author of all time, Tamora Pierce, seems to have generated some kind of vendetta against her on behalf of her marketing house because her recent covers really are horrendous. But, like I said, I don’t really want to go there.

What I want to do is simply show you a few covers that I love. These aren’t books I have necessarily read, but I might simply because the covers are so fantastic.

Sunset Rising


The Shivered Sky (which is also a great title)


Way better than her US cover



Crown of Midnight


The Palace Job

I’m no art director to render decisions on design and marketing. But I do think of myself as an aestheticist. I like pretty things and I’m attracted to images and balance that looks good, to colors that jive, to images that hint at story without simply being an almost photographic rendering of a fantasy scene in the book (yawn). I also prefer the woman look tough and covered, not out of prudishness, just in a lust for cosmic balance. If I never see another tramp stamp cover, headless torso female, I’ll be all too happy.

So there it is a glimpse into my particular taste in covers.



Your Moment of Parasol . . .

Contest entry from ladyceleste via LJ

Your Infusion of Cute . . .

via British Paintings tumblr: The Eternal Dream – William Shackleton 1924

Your Tisane of Smart . . .

via oldtimeystjohnsscifi-tumblr: Evacuation of Duckworth Street during The Great Atari Invasion of 1890

Your Writerly Tinctures . . .  
5 minute bookbinding

Book News:

Tea with the French Cover

Quote of the Day:

“The word recipe belongs to pharmacy, and is only used with reference to medical prescriptions. The cook uses receipts, the apothecary recipes.”

~ The Ladies’ Guide to True Politeness and Perfect Manners or, Miss Leslie’s Behaviour Book by Eliza Leslie (American 1864)

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Posted by Gail Carriger


No Responses

  1. Mara Jade said:

    I really have to compliment you on your cover!! I fell in love with "Soulless" (english version) the moment I saw it at a bookshop. (I think I didn't even read the back side. I just wanted to have it.)

    Although I try not to judge a book by its cover, the design definitely influences what books I pick up. For example, I can't stand books picturing half naked guys. They always remind me of the books my grandmother used to read. The ones with a blond "dream lover" holding a woman tight, his hair waving around and his shirt barely covering anything … Yuk.

    Personally I like books with a simple, elegent cover, not too crowded. I don't need to already see everything that is happening in the book on the outside! I guess "less is more" pretty much describes my taste. 🙂

    Some of my favourite covers are:

    – The Alex Verus Series by Benedict Jacka

    – Classics published by Penguin

  2. Addicted2Heroines said:

    I often shy away from books that have bad covers. I can't help it.

    The cover for Prudence is so lovely. It's one of my favorites. Some more recent favorites of mine are the Monstrous Affections anthology and Chuck Wendig's The Hellsblood Bride.

  3. andrewknighton said:

    I love the old Penguin paperback covers, with the big bands of orange and white and a simple black and white illustration. There's something about what they achieved with that same simple format, and the limited artistic options, time after time. The best creativity often comes from working with such boundaries.

    Plus they're always on old books with that lovely old book smell.

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