Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Do You Judge a Book by its Cover?

I'll have to admit I do. I don't know where that old saying "Don't judge a book by its cover" came from, but when it comes to picking what I want to read it is totally wrong.

For me, before I decide to read a book (unless it's from an author I've read and loved, or a novel I've heard positive reviews about) I first have to be captivated by the book cover. If the cover art doesn't draw me in then the chances of me reading the book is pretty much zilch.

What are some things covers should do?

  • Covers should tell something about the genre


  • Covers should hint toward the story
  • Covers should give some visual aspect of the characters or setting
  • Covers should capture the imagination
  • Sometimes simplicity works

But, this can also be a trap to get readers to read the stories. Just because you like the cover doesn't mean you will like the story inside, but that's to do with each personal opinion.

So, do you judge a book by its cover? And, what do you look for in covers, or what books are you looking forward to reading just because it has an interesting cover?

5 comments:

E. Arroyo said...

I am guilty of chosing first the cover if i've never heard of the author. It lets me know that someone put quite a bit of work to make sure this stuck out.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I do, but I'm still going to buy Beth's book even though I'm not a big fan of her cover. They look like manikins. Which makes me think the characters are plastic.

Love Elana's cover. :D

Hannah Kincade said...

I do it so so much but I've been led astray many times. I've often picked up books by the cover and discover a story that could not compare to the beauty of its bindings. Sad.

Ted Cross said...

I always do. A cover should be chosen with the same level of care that an author took to write the book. I know they often don't allow writers to have input, but a writer should fight for it if they see that a bad cover will be used. I would rather go unpublished than see a terrible cover on my book.

Tara said...

I'm the oddball here. I never look at the cover. I read the title, then the blurb. I probably couldn't tell what the covers of books I've read 3-4 times look like.

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