Happy Wednesday! I know, it’s been awhile since I’ve done a Bookish Thought post and it’s been hard getting back into the swing of things. But, I find myself with some time and knew I had a couple ideas sitting in my drafts.
Which brings me to today’s topic of Bookish Thought: Book Covers! I’ve always been curious about other reader’s opinions and preferences on the various types and different covers one can have for a book. Since creating my book Instagram (@sorryiambooked) and finding several awesome book accounts from around the world, I’ve seen a wide variety of book covers.
Not only are there differences depending on country, but you can have anything from the original book cover, special edition covers to movie adaptation covers.
Which brings up the old saying “You can’t judge a book by it’s cover.” While that’s true when it comes to a person, the Wired article Go Ahead, Judge These Books By Their Covers argues differently. In the article, Jessica Helmand, a graphic designer, states:
“At the end of the day, a book is a visual object,” she says. “You buy the book before you’ve read the book, and so you have to be able to judge a book by its cover.”
To be honest, I never thought of it that way, though it makes sense in some way to me. Sometimes when I’m just browsing for a book, it’ll be the cover that draws me in, but I still read at least the blurb on the back to determine if I want to read it. Sometimes I read the first several pages. Sometimes, it’s the title that draws me in first.
Either way, the book cover is sometimes the first thing a potential reader sees and needs to be visually eye catching to the majority. I won’t deny that I’ve judged a book here and there for its cover, but I try to give them the benefit of the doubt and at least read the back blurb before deciding.
I originally thought of this topic because I bought a used copy of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey last year and found out later that were way cooler covers, ones I wish I bought instead. I also avoid movie adaptation covers as much as possible since the visual of the actors sometimes ruins or messes up the image I end up concocting in my own head. Since this is all something that would be personal preference, I want to know what you prefer when it comes to buying a book, especially one that you absolutely love and has different covers.
Does the book cover always play a big role when it comes to decided if you’re going to read the book and/or buy it? Do you enjoy buying special edition covers? Do you avoid movie adaptation covers like me? Tell me!
For other fun information regarding book covers check these articles I found:
Wired’s 2014 article: What Makes for a Brilliant Book Cover? A Master Explains
The New Yorker’s 2013 article: The Decline and Fall of the Book Cover
ShortList’s article: The 50 Coolest Book Covers