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Lynn Cahoon | Judging a book by its cover

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THE BULL RIDER'S MANAGER is releasing on November 19th and I love the cover. I also love my cover for A MEMBER OF THE COUNCIL (Lyrical Press ‚Äď November 5th).¬† But looking at them, they are so different.

So how can I love both covers?

A MEMBER OF THE COUNCIL THE BULL RIDER'S MANAGER

Because they reflect the feeling of both stories.  The cover for A MEMBER OF THE COUNCIL is sexy, and wispy, and magical.  When my publisher asked me what I wanted for a cover, I gave them specifics. I pointed out covers that I thought were beautiful from their line.  And honestly, one of the reasons I accepted the contract with this publisher is they know what they're doing with covers.  Lyrical didn't disappoint me.

When it came time to proof the first cover for THE BULL RIDER'S MANAGER, most of it I loved.  In the story, Barb Carico's always flying somewhere to meet up with her band of bull riders at a rodeo or promotion event.  So having an airport scene on the cover told me they got the book. A few tweaks to make the character images match the ones floating around in my head, and, the cover was born.

As a reader, the best covers for me are ones that mirror the feel of a book.  Draw you in.  I'm reading a book now that the cover, although pretty, tells me it's a seaside resort, maybe Southern California, maybe south of France.  It's done in light blues and has that yacht club feel.  That's not the story inside at all.  Yes, it's on a beach, but the images painted with the words give me a more rustic view of these cabins rather than the jet set vision of the cover.

Not something an author has a lot of control over, but for a reader, it makes all the difference in drawing me into a story. I want the cover that makes me remember the characters and their setting, reminding me that I need to finish the book. 

So far, I've been lucky with my own covers.  But I still hold my breath before I open the email from my publisher.

Have you ever bought a book based on a cover and been amazed at how the cover mirrored the story?  Tell me about it. One lucky commenter will get a $5 Amazon gift certificate.

 

 

Comments

33 comments posted.

Re: Lynn Cahoon | Judging a book by its cover

Hi! The ones that really make me roll my eyes are when the heroine is blond and lithe, and the cover shows her as dark brunette and buxom. Things like that. It happens often enough that I tend to think that the cover "Might" be representative of the story.
(Kathleen Conner 10:21am November 15, 2012)

Yes. I try to suspend reality but I depend upon the blrb
instead and hope that it is accurate.
(Sharon Berger 1:55pm November 15, 2012)

I usually depend upon the blurb to decide whether to read a book. At the same time, it does annoy me when I discover the hero or heroine on the cover is entirely different from the description in the book.
(Anna Speed 2:46pm November 15, 2012)

I love the look of the covers of books, it has a lot to do with catching my eye.
(Cynthia St. Germain 2:58pm November 15, 2012)

I am guilty of picking a book up for the cover - lately there have been so many beautiful covers, they are artwork. I have to flip over so I know which ones I want to get. There are some covers that have nothing to do with the story, making one think about the marketing department and how they "respect" the reader.
(Carla Carlson 3:00pm November 15, 2012)

yep - guilty over here being sucked in by PRETTY cover
usually PRETTY bare chested hunk :)
(Pamela Faye Howell 3:52pm November 15, 2012)

Yes I will admit that covers can draw me in... but I will read the back to see if it will be something I would like before I buy it. There have been a few covers that told the story beautifully...
(Colleen Conklin 3:57pm November 15, 2012)

I'm not really influenced by book covers.
(G S Moch 4:07pm November 15, 2012)

Both covers are great but I really loved the premise of both
books. They both sound intriguing...
(Pennie Morgan 4:53pm November 15, 2012)

I enjoy looking at book covers and hope it matches what's inside. When I first discovered Joanne Fluke's cozy mysteries at Barnes and Noble, the cover of the book (Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder, I think it's called) drew my eye because of the animal cookie jar on the cover that had its mouth open, apparently shocked at the murder. A cute cover and I really got to love the series. I found it when there were just one or two books out.
(Michelle Fidler 5:08pm November 15, 2012)

Yes, I originally bought "Searching for Dragons" by Patricia C Wrede because of the cover and then read the rest of the series and several more of her books because of how much I loved them. Her book "The Raven Ring" had a really good cover that I referenced several times while reading it but it has a new cover now so I am glad I own the older version.
(Chelsea Knestrick 6:11pm November 15, 2012)

LOVE YOUR BOOKS THEY ARE AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!
(Shelly Caggiano 6:28pm November 15, 2012)

Sounds like an interesting book. Would like to read.
(Pamela Fox 6:35pm November 15, 2012)

I don't usually pay much attention to covers, I've seen so many that just didn't fit the book. I usually pick up a book due to word of mouth, blurb or author.
(Cheryl McEwen 7:02pm November 15, 2012)

Keep the comments coming folks. Just got home from the day
job. I think it's interesting the number of people who the
cover just doesn't matter.
(Lynn Cahoon 7:16pm November 15, 2012)

I don't buy a book based on a cover. The cover catches
my attention but I read the summary next or maybe the
first chapter before buying.
(Jan D 7:41pm November 15, 2012)

yes i look at cover then read back
(Jennifer Beck 9:31pm November 15, 2012)

I really like the cover for A Member of the Council!I do buy and judge a book by their cover. I'm drawn to sexy covers with muscular shirtless guys :-)I love book covers for Larissa Ione, Sherrilyn Kenyon, JR Ward and Jennifer Armentrout/J.Lynn and it was the covers that drew me in. Thanks for the great giveaway!
(Kaci Verdun 9:46pm November 15, 2012)

If I like the cover I'll read the blurb,then I'll decide. But if I like the author, the cover doesn't matter.
(Deb Pelletier 9:58pm November 15, 2012)

I have bought so many books over the years, that it's hard to think back to whether or not the story has corresponded to the cover or not. I will say one thing, though. I've either purchased the book because I adored the Author already, or because the cover caught my eye like a work of art, and after reading a little about it, and glancing at a few pages, the Author definately had me drawn in, so I bought it. Because I'm a little older and I hope wiser now, I've purchased very few lemons. I have to agree with you that the covers of your latest books are wonderful, and I'm sure that I'll enjoy both of them!! Congratulations!!
(Peggy Roberson 10:17pm November 15, 2012)

As the bulk of my purchases are author driven, the cover doesn't matter. When I go to the bookstore, an attractive cover will draw my attention, but it's the back blurb that matters more.
(Mary C 10:46pm November 15, 2012)

i love both covers too and would love to read them
(Kimberly Hoefs 10:56pm November 15, 2012)

I would love to win your book. I also love the covers on books.
(Linda Hall 11:28pm November 15, 2012)

Covers are what draw me to pull the book from the shelf. I have also sent almost an entire book try to find how the cover relate to the story only to find out in the last 3 chapters.
(Shelby S 12:27pm November 16, 2012)

They say you eat with your eyes first and I think the same is true with
books. A cover draws you in and I love when it truly reflects the story. If I
don't know the author, then a great cover can sell me.
(Ann Sheiring 1:13am November 16, 2012)

I try to not be influenced by the cover when I buy a book---I go more by the author's reputation and reading reviews.
(Sue Farrell 11:04am November 16, 2012)

I do look at the covers and I like to think the people in the book look like the same people who are on the cover.
I don't like covers where the hero has blond hair. My hero has to be dark haired.LOL
(Rita Wray 3:13pm November 16, 2012)

I always look at the cover of the book first and then read the excerpt from the back of the book. It doesn't really give me much to go on but from time to time, the story matches the book cover. Now the book goes to my private collection (I don't lend any of these books when they reach my standards).
(Kai Wong 8:52pm November 16, 2012)

I judge books by their covers all the time. It's what makes me
pick it up. Then I read the blurb, note the author & genre.
(Mary Preston 5:03am November 17, 2012)

I like to look at covers when considering the book. I've heard that as with wine labels, a publisher will put more money into a cover for a good book. And after a few reprints they leave off the gilt lettering which is just there to catch the eye but costs more. Some publishers will buy cover art and use it for more than one book by more than one author - I've seen it happen.
I like fantasy covers which make an effort to represent the story, and the same for crime - more likely found in 'cosies' than in serial killer stories. Look at 'The Thief's Gamble' by Juliet E McKenna for a great cover. I'm currently reading 'Lies That Bind' which is about a bookbinder and the cover is excellent both as art and as representing the story.
(Clare O'Beara 7:46am November 17, 2012)

I do not go by the cover but when I read the blurb if it sounds good I buy it, some books only give a short version and do not tell enough about the book. I do not care for that, I want to know what the book is going to be about before I buy it.
(Susan Atkins 1:04pm November 18, 2012)

I like a good book cover, but open the book to the middle and see if my interest is piqued. Reading the blurb is extremely helpful.
(Alyson Widen 5:37pm November 18, 2012)

Thanks everyone who stopped by and commented!
(Lynn Cahoon 10:41pm November 20, 2012)

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