There is an oft repeated phase that book lovers hear ‘never judge a book by it’s cover’, and while I agree that a cover can’t tell you everything you need to know about a book it’s a phase I take issue with.
Publishers spend a lot of money and hire some truly talented people to work on book covers – if we weren’t supposed to use the cover to decide which book to pick up then why bother? I’m certainly glad they do bother, imaging how boring life would be if all books just had a plain white cover – we’d never find a book on our shelves!
As someone who works in a library this is actually one of my pet peeves with audio books – a lot of the boxes just have a plain spine and it always makes me wonder why pretty covers are good for books but not audio books.
We all love a pretty book cover too – all those special editions and sprayed edges that publishers put out, they wouldn’t bother if no one bought them.
For me the cover on a physical book is important, I don’t want to read a book that’s cover is going to freak me out every time I pick it up and I don’t want all my books to look the same, its boring (can we please stop with bright writing on a moody cover for crime fiction and move on to something else?)
Professionally it’s far easier to remember a book if it has a distinct cover and personally, I love a pretty book on my shelves too. The examples at the top of this post are just a selection of some of the wonderful cover art out there right now.
That isn’t to say that a pretty cover always makes for an enjoyable read – indeed I’ve been let down by some before, but generally speaking if attention has been paid to the outside then the book inside is generally worth a look.
Lets appreciate the talented artists who make our books pretty and celebrate the amazingly beautiful books they give us.