It’s the first thing we see. It gives a glimpse into a book, a flash of what to expect. A cover needs to be good. I have a modern series of Harry Potter and the covers of the books are just not as good as the originals, when I hold them I don’t see the heart of the book on the cover, like I do when I hold my original of Azkaban that I found in a charity shop.
To me, the best covers come from children books and young adult, their contents are usually full of action, and when that is captured onto the cover it makes me desperate to read the book.
Here are some of my favourite covers. The effects of the Riordan books emphasise the fantasy and other worldly action of the book, something I am always looking for. The beauty of the cover of my Dickens reflects the past that is captured in his books, the Victorian London he so often writes about. The Hunger Games cover here portrays the repressed world that is looking for hope, the gold against the black makes the symbol shine, the book intriguing.
When I bought my Clockwork Princess book the first thing I wanted to do after reading it was to draw the cover. I loved it so much. I loved the way it was edited, how it was thought about. How time was given.
The Pride and Prejudice cover is a little different. It gives no insight into the book. But the pattern was cute, it looked sweet, I thought it would brighten up my book shelf, and give a little Regency aura from the pattern.
I know it’s the book that matters. The words. The story. The characters. But when you know you are going to keep that book for the rest of your life, you want a cover that gives off warmth.
I always collect different covers of the same book. I think I have 4 different covers of the first Harry Potter book dotted in various places in my room. Maybe it’s because i’m constantly searching for the copy I want forever.
Sometimes I wait longer to buy a book as I am waiting for a different cover, I know my sister has bought books online to get the American cover, even if it means paying more. Am I vain for thinking like this? I don’t know.
But as it is what shows on the bookshelf, the outside of the thing we keep to our heart, a cover of a book, to me, is much more important than many make it out to be. I will never “judge a book by its cover”, but I will be intrigued into a book that has a cover of imagination.