Kate: Hey, look, they kind of go together. We're coordinated!
Maureen: Interesting. No one has ever called me coordinated before. I like it.
Kate: Color coordinated, that is. That's true this month, too, since we both have gorgeous red books out from Harlequin Desire. I am thrilled to share shelf space with you any time! When I heard that AN INNOCENT IN PARADISE would be released the same month as THE TEMPORARY MRS. KING, I squealed. I bow before you, Queen of Desire.
Maureen: I'm not sure what to say to that.
Kate: Not a thing. Accept the adulation as your due.
Maureen: Back to book covers... The Harlequin cover artists are masters, don't you think?
Kate: They're soooo good! Readers can pick out a Desire or a Special Edition from across the room, so they've got that brand thing going... but then they also manage to make each cover unique and evocative.
Maureen: Oooh, good word, evocative. That's exactly what the cover of AN INNOCENT IN PARADISE is – evocative. The beautiful sunset, a romantic embrace while kneeling in the sand just on the edge of the surf, the wind-tossed hair...
Kate: I know, I love it! I want to be in that scene, on that island.
Maureen: Let's go! Drinks are on me.
Kate: The cover perfectly captures the feeling of being swept away by passion, which is exactly what happens when Logan and Grace spark off each other.
Maureen: THE TEMPORARY MRS. KING is set on a luxurious Caribbean island, too, but the cover shot focuses instead on Sean King being a billionaire businessman. (I do love a man in a suit.)
Kate: You can tell it's a passionate story – just look at the heat in their eyes, and the way Melinda's doing the booty tooch, as they say on America's Next Top Model. The Kings of California are incredibly popular with Desire readers, so that and your name are going to have readers frothing at the mouth for this story! I think Sean King might be my favorite of the King brothers, and I've loved them all.
Maureen: I love Sean, too. He has a secret that he's been hiding from everyone – even his brothers – something that made him close himself off from love. Melinda will have to find a way to open his heart to his temporary wife.
Kate: Since both books give readers an island escape for the holidays, we've decided to celebrate by holding the Tropical Christmas Giveaway. We're filling a one-of-a-kind, custom beach bag with all sorts of tropical-themed goodies to warm you this winter.
Maureen: Correction: Kate is filling the beach bag, and let me tell you, the girl is a champion gift-bagger. She's an artist! Trust me, you want to win this prize.
Maureen: And don't forget to also comment below for a chance to win a copy of one of our books today. We'll choose the winners at random at the end of the day and will announce them here with instructions on how to claim your prize.
Do you judge books by their covers? Have you ever been surprised that a book wasn't what you expected it to be? What visual cues do you look for when you're choosing a book? What kind of book covers do you avoid?
74 comments posted.
I look at covers and will pick one to read the blurb if it catches my eye, but I tend to buy authors I love first. If I have any money left - sometimes I don't - then I'll try others and the cover may be a factor in interesting me. Sites like Fresh Fiction and Writerspace also play a part in my choices of new authors.
Some covers make me wanna buy the book. I liked the cover of Joanne Fluke's first Hannah Swenson mystery, Chocolate Chip Murder. It was so cute I just had to look at it. I think the cover shows a teddy bear cookie jar. I really like the covers of Berkley Prime Crime cozies.
I love to look at covers when I am looking for a new
Hi, Sharon! Budget is definitely a factor! I know what you mean about wanting to be sure you can buy books by authors you love first. It's such a compliment to an author when readers buy our books because they've loved our previous books so much. I hope you'll take a peek at the excerpts of AN INNOCENT IN PARADISE (mine) and THE TEMPORARY MRS. KING.
Melissa, Thank you!!!! It's so nice to be on your fav list. You just made my day!
Oh, that's funny. Shows what a technotard I am. It looked like those posts weren't working, so I tried it a second time. Sigh... now there's no way to delete my mistake.
LOLOLOL, Kate! I know I shouldn't laugh at your pain, but it's sympathy laughter. You know I love you, right? Computers are so bleeping annoying!!!!!!
Hi, Sharon! Thanks for stopping by! Good luck in the contest... free books are always good! Be sure to enter our Tropical Christmas contest, too! The links are in the blog post. You have two chances to win. Once here, and once at Blogger and Author Giveaways.
Michelle, those cozy mystery covers can be so fun, almost like a Where's Waldo picture. Lots of fun stuff to discover. Kate's right about the cover of her next mystery being scrumptious. You really should check it out. Kate's Bibliophile Mysteries are so much fun... and there's a sexy guy, so you can't beat that.
You two are so funny, it's fun to read your conversation!! I love the beach theme of the books too!
Melissa, You rock!!! You're on my list of favs now, too. ;)
Hi, Diana! You should see us after we have a few drinks in us! We always have sooooo much fun together, Kate and I. Great to have a good girlfriend.
I do care about book covers but I don't judge a story based on it. Rather it's the blurb that is important to me when it comes to choosing to read a book. I want it to be accurate and appealing though. Some stories have blurbs where a small point sounded much bigger in the blurb or vice versa.
Sometimes I'm looking for a particular Author, but when you go into the bookstore and the books are facing you and you see all those covers, you begin to drool like a kid in a candy store!! You can call me old-fashioned, but as long as there are no vampires ( even though I haven't read one yet), spaceships, robots, devils, or if the cover isn't overly sleazy, it usually grabs my attention. The covers of your books would definately grab my eye. I think color plays a part as well. I've noticed that some of the cover artists miss the mark for the authors, and it's a shame, because I'm sure their books are good, but the cover doesn't grab me, so I pass it by. I enjoyed your posting today, and I'm looking forward to reading both sets of books, even if they are from two different spectrums. I read all genres. Have a wonderful Christmas, Ladies!!
Na, I agree! The blurb is much more important to me than the cover art... though I do appreciate a beautifully designed cover, for sure.
Peggy, I certainly mean no disrespect to cover artists - I've had some gorgeous covers over the years - but I've also had some major eye-rollers. LOL I hope you enjoy THE TEMPORARY MRS. KING and AN INNOCENT IN PARADISE! Merry Christmas to you, too!
Hiya Kate and Maureen! Hiya Fresh Fiction gals! FFGs, did you know that you were putting the two naughty girls together at the back of the classroom today? Mayhem is assured. Kate and Maureen, huge congrats on your concurrent releases. And yeah, I LOVE those covers. Aren't they lovely?
I do like the cover ,but I don't judge the story by the cover.Thanks for giving me a chance to win your book.
I used to judge books by the cover & by my favorite authors until I got my Nook. I have found that I look at the covers only briefly, but look at the content more. I have found a lot more great authors!
Hiya, Anna! Great to see you! And yes... the Fresh Fiction gals should've known what they were getting into when they read our post. Well behaved, we are not!
You're welcome, Linda! Good luck!
Maureen, I knew you would laugh at me about my online error! That's just the kind of pal you are.
Maureen and Kate are quite a team. Thanks, Kate i already won your book.
Na, oh, don't you hate that, when the blurb isn't accurate? Writing a blurb is an artform in itself.
Jenny, oh, that's an interesting side effect of the ebook revolution that I hadn't considered.
Oh, I love Jenny's comment about the covers not being as important on a
The author is more important to me than the cover. If I'm not familiar with the author, an attractive cover can sometimes result in my picking the book up and reading the blurb.
I look to covers and see if they match the mood in the book. It's usually tantalizing with romance.
The authors and the stories are more important than the covers.But some of the covers are so kool.
Miss Anna! So good of you to stop by! Thank you. And thank you so much for your enthusiasm about our books. The covers really are lovely, aren't they? We're so lucky!
LOL, Tammy! I'm honored to be on your auto buy list. Thanks!
Donna, Maureen and I both felt that readers would love a mental escape to the Caribbean during the cold month of December. But you're right, an island paradise is lovely any time of year. That's what makes it paradise!
Mary, then the cover has done its job! Thanks for stopping by. :)
Alyson, tantalizing is such a great word! That's what we want our covers to do. To tantalize and to tempt.
I'm all about the candy store!!!! Kate knows me well. One of the best things about being a romance writer is looking for heroic inspiration. "But honey," I say to my husband when he catches me looking at pictures of sexy men, "it's research!"
ROFL, Maureen!!!!! The sacrifices you make for your art!
Amy, covers really do have amazing visual cues to tell readers what type of book it is. Some of the paranormal covers, like the Regan Hastings cover for VISIONS OF SKYFIRE, are just soooo cutting edge awesome. I love them!
So true... I do all that in-depth research for my readers, so I can get every last detail of the sexy man exactly right. Because that's the kind of writer I am.
We're going to leave this contest open until tomorrow, since the blog didn't go live until late today. So keep those comments coming! I need to go grab some dinner. I'm starving! Kate and I will be back in the morning to respond to comments.
You know I love you ladies!! You're both auto-buys for me and I pre-order as
I love book cover. I do not, however, judge books by their covers. And, yes, sometimes I am surprised by how out of sync the cover and contents can be. I really love beautiful or creative covers. I appreciate a cover that was clearly designed for that book and that book alone. I love when a series has a distinctive cover look.
Drives me bananas when content and cover don't match,
I've learned over the years that you can't always go by the cover. I started reading the old Harlequin romance books(1960s-1970s)) that only had simple drawn/paintings for the covers..and they were wonderful stories mainly set in Australia, Great Britain, Canada, Italy or Greece. Eventhough today's bookcovers are much, much more appealing (wouldn't mind having framed and hanging on the wall)I still look for the author. If I'm not familiar with an authors' book, I'm more attracted to the cover first.
Do you judge books by their covers? I donâ€™t really judge
I generally look for author first, but will pick up a book and read the synopsis based on the cover if the author is not familiar to me. And I do expect the inside to live up to the cover, especially if the cover is steamy!
I absolutely judge books by their covers. It's what you see first & first impressions do count.
If it is an author that I am not familiar with their writing, I do give the cover value.
I do tend to look at the covers. For me, the whole experience with the
What a fascinating topic - yes, the cover art is SO important - color is the first thing that grabs my eye, though, for some reason - and as Debbie mentioned in the post before mine, I also am not too crazy about "cutsey" stuff on the cover - also to agree with Margaret Murray-Evans' earlier post, I "grew up" with the simpler Harlequin Romance/Presents stories and covers - the stories and books have certainly evolved over the years, haven't they? I love it. If I could just move into a bookstore and live there, I'd be in my element. Give me my books, coffee, and music and I am good to go!
If I already have heard about a series I won't judge a book by its covers, but if I am browsing new books it is totally the cover that will make me read the back cover to see if I am interested in a book. Something has to catch my eye and that just depends on the mood I am in. I can't imagine ever reading twilight if the cover hadn't grabbed my attention as being so different from the norm.
Angela, Oooooooh, we love pre-orders! Thank you! I know what you mean about a big TBR pile. That's one of the reasons I love Desires so much... at only 200 pages, they're a complete love story in half the time of a single title. :)
Pat, that is disconcerting, isn't it? Especially when the mismatch is glaringly obvious, like blond hair on a hero who's described as having black hair in the book. They got it completely right on the cover of AN INNOCENT IN PARADISE, though! I'm thrilled.
When it comes to "new to me" authors, I'm a big cover person. I could just be walking by and I'll see a eye catching cover out of the corner of my eye and be immediately drawn to a book. I like covers that are not too busy, have a glimpse of the hero on it and are bright jewel toned. I have discovered many new favorite authors simply by their book covers. Covers that are crowded, with a lot going on, is a big turn off. Oh, and an unappealing background color will disappear into the scenery.
Jennifer, some covers truly are beautiful, aren't they? Genuine works of art that I'd be thrilled to hang on my wall. Thank you for commenting, and good luck in the contest!
Wow, Kate, I thought I was up early today, and you've already been commenting! It's 6:30, and my eyes aren't fully open yet.
Pat, AAAAAAAAUGHHHHH!!!! That is so frustrating for an author, when the cover art comes in looking like two completely different people from the ones you wrote about in the book. Harlequin almost always gets it right, but every once in a while, the gremlins take over. I've reached the point where I just want the guy to be good looking. Give me a handsome guy on the cover, and I'm a happy camper.
I did get an early start today. Too early. I kind of want to go back to bed. Not going to happen, of course. I'll beat the urge into submission by loading up on caffeine.
Sue, the steaminess level of the book really should be immediately apparent on the cover because readers have such strong preferences about that. Can you imagine seeing a naked male chest on, say, a Debbie Macomber novel?
Margaret, I think those old romances were what got me interested in traveling. I loved reading romances set in such exotic places.
Amanda, LOLOL!!!! I know what you mean about some covers being a little too sexy for certain places. Like in the stands at your kid's elementary school soccer game. (Even though all the other moms would probably be jealous!)
Pam, that Twilight cover is a major success story. That was her first book, so no one knew Stephanie Meyers. That cover drew in a looooot of readers. In my paranormal life (as Regan Hastings), I hear from a lot of readers who said that Twilight got them back into reading.
Debbie, great post! Those visual triggers are what tells a reader whether the story is the type of book they like to read. I love that we have something for everyone in romance.
I agree! There's a romance to suit every mood. Even in my mysteries, there's some romance. It's pretty fun, actually, writing an ongoing love story that spans a series of books. Brooklyn Wainwright and Derek Stone are dating now, but it took a while for them to get there! (Dead bodies tend to slow things down, romance-wise.)
I try not to just a book by it's cover---but I'm really disappointed if the cover and the story don't match. I try to avoid covers that are too overtly sexy because if my husband sees me reading them he sneers.
If it's a new author, a nice cover will make me pick up the book and read the back cover. If it's an established author that I read, then even if the cover is ugly, I'll still buy it. It's a shame that your name is on the book, but you have no say on the covers.
I like to see an appealing cover, but mainly I search for certain authors. The cover helps if it's written by a new author.
LOL, Sue! Oh, those sneering husband. Mine wouldn't dare since I write them!
A book cover tells me alot before I even read the book. (Sometimes I'm not always right, but my first impression does affect whether I buy the book or not). If the book has intrigue, mystery, sizzle or sadness, it should be conveyed even if only slightly on the cover. I'm more likely to pick a book that has an imagine displayed on the cover. Kind of sets my mind up for a particular kind of story.
A cover might catch my eye, but I always read that back to see if my
Yes, I do judge a book by its cover. However, I also go by well-known author and blog reviews...
I stop judging books by their cover 30 years ago, but both of these books look like something I would enjoy reading!!
Debbie, I agree. One of the most important things a cover does is to convey the mood of the book.
I look at the title, then author (unless I'm reading EVERYTHING in the author's booklist); I don't really pay attention to the covers. Unless I'm looking at the design elements - I do love clean, striking design. That said, I'm just as happy if the characters are not illustrated - then I have to create my own picture!
I definately like when a book cover reflects the story a bit. I also have to say I get really irked if the hero is described as a blond with shoulderlength hair the the cover model has dark short hair. Grrr it just proves to me that the publisher doesn't care about consistancy and that bothers me. If you can't get it right then don't put people on the cover at all.
Registered users may leave comments.