Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme which asks us to list 10 things pertaining to the book universe according to the prompts.This week is about the cover trends we like and dislike.
What I like on book covers:
On a cover I like seeing a subtle visual reference to the story,whose meaning I will decipher only after reading the book.
I think in an age when people are more than ever into eBooks,designers ought to use their imagination and come up with never-seen-before covers.I am very fond of creative designs and have a collection on my bookshelves.
When a cover is simple and well-done,it is perfect.
I like designs which speak to our aesthetic sensitivity.
A cover should not strike me as overly modern or archaic.Of course the design will be modern in style,as we are in the 21st century,but the components should give no clue as to when the book was written.Books are made to be timeless and designers should,as far as possible,associate no era to them.
What I don’t like on book covers:
No two people ever read the same book,because authors give us great leeway to imagine the setting,the characters and other elements in the story.I thus don’t like it when I see someone on a book cover.It restricts my imagination to that person only and I will have to bear with him/her for the whole of the book.
I don’t see the appeal of only having letters on a book cover,especially in this day and age;I find this style very dull and ancient…
There are book covers which are so similar to one another that you can barely discriminate between them.Check a bunch of newly-released young adult novels,and you will see one of these: a stock female model who has nothing alike with your average girl down street,a shadowy male figure walking in a saturated colourful light,or a young woman whose face somehow is always partially or completely barred.
Photoshop can make unbelievable things,but sometimes it really looks fake and lame.Take this Divergent cover for example.It is pretty amateurish and anybody good enough in Photoshop can use some flame ‘brushes’ and give them that glowing orange colour.The designers could have been a little bit more pro for this one.In any case I’ve never read any Divergent book,and their covers don’t make me want to.
Here I’m particularly thinking of those big yellow Penguin Classics paperbacks.Their covers are generally classical paintings from which emanates a feeling of sheer boredom.They make classics look very archaic,dull and heavy,which is definitely not the case.Above is such an edition of The Picture of Dorian Gray,one of my favourite books.Look how they transformed the very witty Wilde’s universe into a boring setting!I’m a guy,but I even can tell that the Dorian on this cover is not the heartthrob of Wilde’s story!