Fear in Writing: Those pages! That cover!

Today in Literary History

Today in Literary History...December 14, 1907: Rudyard Kipling receives the Nobel prize for literature, the first English-language writer to do so.ud

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Those pages! That cover!

Ever look at a book and think, Wow.  Those pages are really nice.  That cover!  Impressive.

Personally, I like the pages that are rough on th edge, as if they've been torn from an important manuscript.  Not quite white, but more ecrue.  And the size--I know it's more expensive, but I like the larger paperbacks that are so popular today.  They seem more authoritative while still giving concession to the economy.

The cover?  My ideal cover would have muted colors and a deep black title that really stands out.  The cover would be a blur of impressionistic modernism.  I know that doesn't actually mean anything, but I don't yet have a reason to be more clear.

Some of my favorite covers?  Michael Gruber's The Witch's Boy, Stieg Larsson's The Girl Who Played With FireLouise Penny's Bury Your Dead, Tana French's In the Woods, and Tasha Alexander's Tears of Pearl.  You'll notice they are all different but all so appropriate for their contents, all beautiful in their detail.


All thoughts of publisher's input aside, how would your ideal book look and feel?


  1. Must admit I haven't read the Stieg Larsson books yet. It's a shame, since I'm from the same part of the world. But I enjoyed the movies >:)

    Cold As Heaven

  2. Michele - Interesting, isn't it, how those visuals affect our decision to read or not to read. Of courses, sometimes covers can be off-putting (at least they are to me) if they're too garish, etc.. But absolutely, cover design is important.

  3. Oh yes, I'm a visual junkie and the feel of a book is very important. I like that decal edge too and the book has to be well bound - I hate ones that are cheezy. The cover needs to be appropriate to the book without giving me too many images of protagonists - the place if it is important or a symbol of what might have happened. I love Louise Penney's - all of them - she has one cover for the Canadian & British editions and one for the United States' editions. I think you have the Canadian one up there but not positive.

  4. This topic always gets me excited! I want some black in my cover!

  5. Those are excellent choices. I am drawn to a book by its cover as much as I've been repelled by it.

  6. I just received a picture of my covers but I haven't felt them...I don't know if they're glossy or embossed or matte. I'm actually dying to know.

  7. I loved the cover of Tears of Pearl- that's a big reason why I bought it. And I love the rough paper too, especially in historical novels.

  8. The larger paperback size is nice. I don't have any preferences regarding colour or font type, only that it be clear to read and eye-catching.


  9. "Bury your dead" and "Tears of Pearl"
    are my favourites.

    As so often happens the cover for Larsson's book is totally different for the Oz market.
    Often we get the UK cover but sometimes we get our own