To judge or not to judge…

They say don’t judge a book by its cover, but sometimes it’s difficult not to.

I recently picked up Brenna Yovanoff’s The Replacement at the library solely because of the cover. It wasn’t that the inside jacket didn’t read well – it does – but the cover caught my eye and I couldn’t not take the book home with me after seeing it. I mean, look at this cover. The old pram, the dissipating fog, the terribly eerie instruments hanging over said carriage. It’s amazing. (And to be fair, I’m about 50 pages into this book, and so far it is living up to its marvelous cover, which is a very nice thing indeed).

Anyway, this made me think about all the books I’ve picked up in recent years based on cover art alone. It is true that there are some amazing stories that take place behind some not-so-nice covers, but my personal buying/borrowing habits seem to be so impacted on covers that I’ve started to think a catchy title and some beauitful, intruiging cover art might be able to sell me a book just as effectively as a well written premise on its inside jacket.

To prove my point, Exhibit A, Books I have picked up based on lovely cover art:


And I’m not saying that these are simply books with pretty covers. Many of them are amazing, captivating stories. I’m saying something about this style of artwork grabbed me and made me want to read, maybe even more so than the inside jackets, regardless of recommendations or rave reviews. I guess I seem to like abstract covers. Or simple, minimal ones. And I especially tend to shy away from covers with people slathered all over the front. I wonder what this says about me…

And what about you? Tell me, are you influenced by cover art? Have you ever picked up a book solely for the visuals on its front?

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