Pages

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Book Covers


I have been thinking about this for several months and decided to share my feelings about one current trend in book covers. Seems to be fashionable to display women with most of their heads cut off. I thought it suggested intrigue when I first saw it on Phillappa Gregory's The Queen's Fool and it was okay for the two other's in the group, The Virgin's Lover and The Other Boleyn Girl. I don't know exactly when the first cover like this came out, but I became aware of them first with the three books by Gregory. Now whenever I look over my list of recommended books on amazon.com I'm surprised by how many other books have similar covers. Or when in a book store, they are all over the place. A little originiality, please!

28 comments:

SuziQoregon said...

Oh how funny - I'd noticed the similarity with the Gregory books, but hadn't noticed the trend had spread to other authors.

Cardine said...

They're weird. Can't people draw faces, or are they leaving that to our imaginations?

iliana said...

How strange! I hadn't noticed that. Good catch.

Carl V. said...

I actually like the trend. Let's face it, women are beautiful and make for eye catching book covers...at least to those of the male persuasion anyway. Just like anything in advertising there are trends and once a trend is set and sales are made others follow suit. I like the idea of covers staying the same for the same author, for example with Gregory's books.

The headless thing I assume allows the reader to have some idea of the looks of the character and yet still be able to put their own face to the character via his/her imagination.

Glad I wasn't the only one noticing this though. I too have actually saved images of some of my favs and have a post in the works on this very thing. Good job!

Susan Abraham said...

I never noticd this before, Booklogged, but as always the astute observer, you have a very good point.

love

booklogged said...

Y'all are sweet to come by for a visit. I sure enjoy 'em. Carl, thanks for the male take on thinks. When I'm shopping for a book and the cover lacks originality it tends to lose points in my mind before I even know anything about the story.

Bellezza said...

I never noticed this until you pointed it out! (It reminds me of the magazine covers in the 80s, when the only two models ever featured seemed to be Brooke Shields or Princess Diana.) I agree, please, more originality!

Bookfool said...

Oh, yeah, I've noticed that. My thought was much like Carl's - that the idea was to leave the face to the reader's imagination. I don't mind them, but after a while a bookcover trend can get really tiresome. The same thing has been true of chick lit - logs of legs in high heels. Weird.

Bookfool said...

Oops, that should be "lots of legs". Sigh. Sorry about that!

ZuphChic said...

I never noticed that before...now I'm going to see headless women everywhere! LOL

Framed said...

I saw a book today and felt disconcerted on its obvious playing on the woman's chest. There was no face like the ones you featured. I didn't even look at any closer because I thought it was probably of the historical smut romance genre. Your covers are much more tasteful thatn the one I saw.

Bellezza said...

One time when I was teaching reading, a mother of a student popped into the room to read with us. She brought along her current novel, "Love's Tender Fury" or something like that. NONE of the children could concentrate after looking at the cover of a woman with a ripped apart bodice.

Danielle said...

How Wild. I noticed the Gregory books, but not all the others. I guess it is a new trend, eh!

Library Mama said...

Wow - I hadn't noticed this trend, but now that you've pointed it out....

Interesting that the publisher decided to behead "The Other Boleyn Girl". ;-)

The Traveller said...

Perhpas the publishers think headless women encourage readers to buy books? I'm going to notice them everywhere now, too!

Orange Blossom Goddess (aka Heather) said...

Good thing I'm not a feminist or I might really think this was a dig against the women's movement. As it is, I had noticed and am getting sick of it. I do like when series of books have similar cover themes but to see the same theme over and over is boring...I wonder if most of the covers are coming from the same publisher or imprints of one publisher?

Anonymous said...

Here's another one:

[IMG]http://i14.photobucket.com/albums/a306/nessyrenay/RestFalls_thumb.jpg[/IMG]

Steve said...

czypb just came to mind....

Never mind that for now. This is the first time I've taken time to find your blog Booklogged. Cool name by the way. Makes one wonder about the subject matter here. jkoc. It really looks interesting and I'm now getting a bit nervous that I'm not going to be able to keep up with all the intereting blogs I've already discovered just in the family.

About the faces. I think it might actually have a very good reason. The purpose of writing is to convey in words what the author wants you to experience. So if there were faces on the (assumed) main characters on the cover, you'd form impressions of the character's nature/personality etc based on the picture and your past experiences.

Or it could be that someone just discovered those Fiskars page trimmers and got a little carried away.

Joy said...

Hi Booklogged!

I just wanted to tell you that I love your side bar of "My Book Lists". :)

Also, I'm looking forward to reading your review of TALK TALK.

Joy said...

Me again! I was wondering if you wouldn't mind sharing your secret on how you added sub pages. :) I can't seem to figure that one out.

Thanks!

booklogged said...

Joy, I assume you are talking about the book reviews. If so, you are not going to be happy. Each sub page is actually it's own blog. Since doing this I've learned that other blogging places allow for categories. Blogspot does not. I've been thinking about changing so I can have categories, but just haven't gotten around to it. Right now I am cutting and pasting my book reviews to the correct blog (i.e. mystery, YA) and then adding the title to the Book Review page. It's a pain.

Let me know if that answered you question? Or if I can create any more questions for you!

Lotus Reads said...

What a great observation, booklogged! I must start paying more attention to bookcovers!

Joy said...

I knew that your reviews were linked to another blog. What I couldn't figure out was how to link my books on the side to its individual page, but I finally got it! :) Now it seems so...DUH! LOL

Thanks for your help anyway. I appreciate it.

GuusjeM said...

Perhaps the Queen of Hearts is in charge of the art department- "Of With Her Head!"

Library Lady said...

I'm with guusjem...some publisher said...Off with Their Heads! :-0

Kristina said...

Wow... you're totally right! Even a bunch of Jennifer Weiner's chick lit covers have women without heads on them too. Odd. Now I think I'll be thinking about this all the time when I look at books. And I work in a library!

BTW, if you're thinking about switching over to another blogging platform, it's not as hard as you'd think. I switched from Blogger to Wordpress a long time ago and I was amazed by how easy it was. Wordpress just imports every post you've written from however many blogs you want. Then it organizes the posts by date and you just have to go through and assign categories to them. And your Blogger blogs stay put so if you don't like Wordpress (or Typepad or whatever), you still have your Blogger blogs safe and sound. However, unless you host a Wordpress or Typepad blog on your own server somewhere, you're going to have to choose from a limited number of templates for your blog and the majority of Wordpress's templates are... well... ugly.

Anyhoo... just thought I'd chime in :)

Kirsten said...

You know I've never noticed this before. Funny, considering I've read several of these books. Now I'm going to be looking at covers a little more closely...I bet there are many more that have followed this trend.

hellomelissa said...

an interesting observation! maybe we should call it "the marie antoinette trend." i just finished "the constant princess" by gregory and GUESS WHAT??? catherine of aragon actually has a head. it's the man on the cover (presumably her first husband, arthur, who guides her spiritually through the story) that is beheaded.