posted at Thursday, October 10th, 2013 at 6:00 AM | Cover Snark
Welcome to Cover Snark, where the people are snarky and the covers quiver in fear. Since I don’t write many snarky book reviews here on A Reader of Fictions, Cover Snark is my outlet. If you click on the title of the book, where possible, I’ve linked to Goodreads. Clicking on the cover itself will show you the cover in a larger size, in most cases. Feel free to love covers I hate and vice versa. Let me know your thoughts in the comments!
Alright everyone, strap in, hold onto your hats, and make sure your coworkers can’t hear you, because this is going to be a long, snarky ride. Warning: WTF covers have been left out, but for one timely exception, due to the sheer mass of this Cover Snark. Don’t worry, though. I’m saving them up.
Shiny and New:
1. Don’t Look Back – Jennifer L. Armentrout
Thoughts: Why are dolls so creepy? It’s really no wonder we only play with them when we’re children, thus full of evil. GIF covers are awesome, but I’m also never sure which freezeframe is THE cover, which I find vaguely upsetting.
2. Secret Girlfriend (RVHS Secrets #1) – Bria Quinlan
Thoughts: Why is the grass by the soccar ball so much higher than all the other grass? Also, Mia would approve of this pose.
3. Heart Breaths – K.K. Hendin
Thoughts: Love the shading and the colors on this one. They give it a more unique mood, even if the subject matter’s nothing new. Also, sitting on the sand like that is a terrible idea. SAND GOES EVERYWHERE.
4. Project: Runaway Bride (Project: Passion #2) – Heidi Betts
Thoughts: No woman looks that happy running all out without shoes on pavement. Plus, jilting someone at the altar is awkward, even if you know you’re making the right decision. THOSE SMILES ARE A LIE.
5. Wordless (Words Made Flesh #1) – Adrianne Strickland
Thoughts: The green light kind of looks like a marijuana plant. Then there’s the tagline, which is creepy and not sense-making. If it’s “wordless,” then how are there any words to become flesh? Then there’s the author name which is in some sort of marquee font. Cover, why?
6. Feather Bound – Sarah Raughley
Thoughts: I WILL SAY YES TO THE DRESS. This is so FLAPPING cool. I want to marry this cover, which is awesome, because it’s dressed for the occasion.
7. After the End (After the End #1) – Amy Plum
Thoughts: IN THE NAME OF MANCHEE, THOSE PUPPIES BETTER NOT DIE.
8. The Boy Problem: Notes and Observations of Tabitha Reddy (The Boy Project #2) – Kami Kinard
Thoughts: I…don’t really care about these covers. It’s a nice companion to the cover for The Boy Project, but otherwise meh.
9. The Truth Against the World – Sarah Jamila Stevenson
Thoughts: This looks so Irish. Exciting! Note the frolicking ghost!
10. Her Last Assassin – Victoria Lamb
Thoughts: Oh, neck ruffles. What an incredibly odd fashion. If you took those off though, I bet Anne would love the style though. Look at those pufftastic sleeves!
11. Finding Cinderella – Colleen Hoover
Thoughts: You’ve got an awesome fairy tale title and all you can think of for a cover is white people hugging? BORING.
12. The Secret Sky – Atia Abawi
Thoughts: Pretty, pretty, but I am really sick of any sort of forbidden love. Still, bonus points for YA being set in a different culture.
13. The Dividing Line (Space #2) – Victoria H. Smith
Thoughts: Girl, I have been where you are. Heels are great, until the point where your feet hurt so much you would rather risk stepping on glass or nasty things on the sidewalk rather than wear them another moment. Also, honey, be careful bending over or you will flash everyone.
14. Pride and Prep School (Snark and Circumstance #3) – Stephanie Wardrop
Thoughts: This cover would be completely irresistible if he were wearing a newsie cap. LBD feeels.
15. Castle Hill (On Dublin Street #2.5) – Samantha Young
Thoughts: Pairing a sexy book with a schoolyard taunt is an obvious choice. Next we’ll see a cover with the tagline: “I see London. I see France.”
16. The Almost Girl – Amalie Howard
Thoughts: Props to Strange Chemistry for stepping up their cover art. Some of the textures on her head seem a bit weird, like above the ear piece, but whatever it’s creepy badass science fictiony awesomeness.
17. ARV-3 – Cameo Renae
Thoughts: This cover is totally nucular.
18. Once Upon a Time in Hell (The Heaven’s Gate Trilogy #2) – Guy Adams
Thoughts: Apparently upside down is a new cover trend. Steampunk western! I think that’s a lady shooting through the sky. By her pretty floral bonnet, she will end him.
19. Solving for Ex – Leigh Ann Kopans
Thoughts: This is so adorable I could die. I like that the math makes use of smiley faces and stick figures.
20. The Impetuous Afflictions of Jonathan Wolfe – Charlie Cochet
Thoughts: Men really don’t wear vests enough. Downton Abbey’s Thomas would totally make inappropriate overtures if assigned to work as a valet for this guy.
21. Working It – Kendall Ryan
Thoughts: If she’s done with that dress, then I will take it.
22. The Girl Who Came Home: A Novel of the Titanic – Hazel Gaynor
Thoughts: Little did we know, but the Titanic was ACTUALLY sunk by a lady giant.
23. Stella – Helen Eve
Thoughts: This looks like it belongs in Francis Pascal’s Fearless series. Very 2000s.
24. High & Dry – Sarah Skilton
Thoughts: Looks awful wet to me. Or gelled anyway, given that he’s stuck in a gel capsule. In Soviet Russia, drug takes you!
25. Cold Calls – Charles Benoit
Thoughts: THE CALL IS COMING FROM INSIDE THE HOUSE.
26. Marco’s Story (The Beautiful and the Cursed) – Page Morgan
Thoughts: Dear cover designers, please listen to Ellis (The Random Transliterator); the Eiffel Tower is hackneyed.Also, I choose to believe this is a story about the gargoyles in The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
27. Autumn Rose (The Dark Heroine #2) – Abigail Gibbs
Thoughts: I do quite like the designs around the edges, but the butterfly with roses on its wings? Bleh, cheesy to the max. Just look at the ink trying to escape its lameness!
28. Pretty in Pearls (Fins #2.5) – Tera Lynn Childs
Thoughts: Oh look, they made little pearl waves. And some of the letters have gills! Though it’s not really my thing, I love that Harper Teen Impulse is putting in an effort now.
29. The Defiant (The Forsaken #3) by Lisa M. Stasse
Thoughts: The green’s a much better color than the pink of the previous book, but I still miss the simplicity of the beige background where the colors really popped. Still, the concept on these covers is gorgeous. Also, tagline that’s plot-focused. Hurrah!
30. Magnolia – Kristi Cook
Thoughts: I claim that dress for my wardrobe. Deal with it, Ashleigh! However, girl needs a serious hair intervention, and that background looks so fake!
31. Scandal – Sarah Ockler
Thoughts: I will also claim this dress. The # in front of the title is pretty hilarious, as is the tagging effect. Not thrilled about the infidelity and best friend backstabbing being shown here.
32. Redemption (Defiance #2) – Stephanie Tyler
Thoughts: I’m going to imagine that this is Charlie Hunnam and he finally shaved off that scruffy beard for a reason other than to play Christian Grey. Or is it Gray? Actually, I don’t give a shit. Wait, hold up is he wearing shorts on his bike? That’s so dumb. If he falls, he’s going to rub all the skin off all his body. Abs won’t look so pretty then. Nor will the tats. Darwin Award at 6 o’clock dude!
33. Stormbringer (Weather Witch #2) – Shannon Delaney
Thoughts: The swoopies sort of look like antlers. Or maybe I’ve just watched too much Hannibal. Must be steampunk as I spy a dirigible. Dirigibles are to steampunk as the Eiffel Tower is to books set in Paris.
34. Torn Away – Jennifer Brown:
Thoughts: In the instant where Hermione received her Hogwarts letter, her whole world changed. She looks like Hermione to more than just me, right? If not, this snark makes no sense. Deal with it.
35. At Your Service – Jen Malone
Thoughts: I’m not sure I would trust a hotel that had a middle grader working the concierge desk. Actually, no, I am certain that I would not trust that. Perhaps it’s bring your daughter to work day.
36. Breakable – Aimee L. Salter
Thoughts: This pose is exactly how I felt in high school. BORED. Remember watching the clock? Fifty minutes never went by so slowly.
37. Last Hit – Jen Frederick & Jessica Clare
Thoughts: Oh good, a dude who serial murders for money and likes to claim women is sexy now. *gives up on humanity*
38. New Beginnings (Everyday Angel #1) – Victoria Schwab
Thoughts: Oh, angel wing covers, I thought your trend was almost over, but apparently not. These angel wings look like a really ugly wrap with padded shoulders and a lot of fringe.
39. Rebel (Reboot #2) – Amy Tintera
Thoughts: I see what they’re doing with highlighting the numbers in the time she’s been alive, but, yo, that is not how clocks work.
40. Definitely, Maybe in Love – Ophelia London
Thoughts: Why does an umbrella take a boring white people kissing cover and make it something I love? I blame Gene Kelly and his adorable umbrella dance.
41. Hollow City (Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children #2) – Ransom Riggs
Thoughts: Children are so creepy. Yesssss. I approve of this. Also, I love the little theatrical mask at the top making a frowny X_X face.
43. What a Rancher Wants – Sarah M.Anderson
Thoughts: First reaction: “Roll, roll, roll in ze hay!” Only how can you roll in such vertical hay? Second reaction: Christina Aguilera’s less popular song “What a Ranger Wants,” follow-up to “Holstein in a Bottle.”
44. Graduation Day (The Testing #3) – Joelle Charbonneau
Thoughts: These just look so cheesy to me. Is that the shadow of someone’s arm on the pin or is that actually ON the pin with the purple lightning? Which is what happens during Prince’s storms, obviously. This cover has been brought to you by the school formerly known as Hogwarts.
45. Tease – Amanda Maciel
Thoughts: Pardon me while I try to make out what the text says. Hmmm, not sure if it’s a good idea to put “Jesus, this is boring.” on a book cover. Wouldn’t that send subliminal messages to avoid? I’m sort of bored by it online, but I saw a pic of the actual jacket on Epic Reads and it was really shiny. I like shiny. Sometimes the digital images just cannot hold the awesome.
46. The Fall of the Hotel Dumort (The Bane Chronicles #7) – Cassandra Clare & Maureen Johnson
Thoughts: Are we not done with this guy’s nasty hands yet? Dude, soap, use it. You may not have heard of this invention, but it’s amazing.
47. Lie to Me (Redemption #1) – Chloe Cox
Thoughts: Dude: “Your deodorant is totally effective, honey! You in no way smell like sewage.”
48. The Castle Behind Thorns – Merrie Haskell
Thoughts: IS THIS A SLEEPING BEAUTY RETELLING? IT BETTER BE. YES, THIS DOES REQUIRE ALL CAPS, OKAY. That dude’s ax must be mightier than it looks.
49. Prisoner of Night and Fog – Anne Blankman
Thoughts: You’ve gotta put your behind in your past.
50. My Best Friend, Maybe – Caela Carter
Thoughts: I thought we were best friends, but then you went out and bought the same dress in a different color. Bitch, you know how much I liked this dress and now I can’t wear it. Bad enough our town is flooded, but now THIS. BETRAYED!
51. There Will Come a Time – Carrie Arcos
Thoughts: The lamp from Anchorman finally tells its side of the story.
52. Evil Twins (Case File 13 #3) – J. Scott Savage
Thoughts: So many horrible things are happening to eyeballs: one’s being held and one is being impaled by drippy font. Kids like this. Further proof that they are terrifying.
53. Outcast (Defiance #0.5) – C. J. Redwine
Thoughts: How seasonal! Now where are my s’mores and cocoa?
54. Girl in Reverse – Barbara Stuber
Thoughts: THE DRAGON AND CLOUDS OVER THE TOP. AND AN ASIAN SETTING. *swoons* *revives* And apparently it’s YA too, though it looks like an adult fic cover to me. *resumes swooning*
55. Through the Woods – Emily Carroll
Thoughts: *pets* Little Red Riding Hood has had a style change! Blue’s always been my favorite color, girl. I like the makeover.
56. Petra K and the Blackhearts – M. Henderson Ellis
Thoughts: Dear god, it’s beautiful.
57. The Devil’s Reprise (Devils #2) – Karina Halle
Thoughts: It kinda looks like his nipples don’t match, though it could be the lighting/angle. Doesn’t live up to the gorgeousness of The Devil’s Metal.
58. Among the Thorns – Veronica Schanoes
Thoughts: HER HAIR IS TREES WITH MEN DEAD IN THEM.
59. The Color of Paradox – A.M. Dellamonica
Thoughts: Yikes, the pollution’s sure gotten bad.
60. The Anderson Project – David G. Hartwell, ed.
Thoughts: Oh snap, that dude is dead. You never let go of the rope! Never never never!
62. The Art of Lainey – Paula Stokes
Thoughts: Based on her expression, I’m fairly certain she put booze in that beverage.
63. Gasp (Visions #3) Lisa McMann
Thoughts: OMG, IS IT AN EYE? I NEVER WOULD HAVE GUESSED.
64. Stolen (Taken #0.5) – Erin Bowman
Thoughts: Authors with ugly covers, you should really consult with Erin on the proper sacrifices to be performed to the cover design gods.
65. Welcome to the Dark House – Laurie Faria Stolarz
Thoughts: CAROUSEL OF DOOM. Christina approves.
66. Boys Like You – Juliana Stone
Thoughts: A cover where a girl’s not wearing heels? Magic! However, tagline, the way one ends a question is NOT with an ellipsis. Is this cover good…
67. Camp Payback (Camp Boyfriend #2) – J. K. Rock
Thoughts: Hello Muddah, Hello Fadduh, here I am at Camp Payback-a. Camp is very entertaining. And they say we’ll have some fun if we stop flirting.
68. Fan Art – Sarah Tregay
Thoughts: If the picture tells the story, then this story will be adorbs and a half.
69. The Treatment (The Program #2) – Suzanne Young
Thoughts: “There are two of us, but they only gave us one pill. What does it mean? Which of us is supposed to take it? Should we both take half? Is the fact that there’s an us a delusion? AM I JUST ME AND I’M SO FAR GONE I SEE TWO SHADOWS?” Snark has been suspended in favor of abject terror now that I have noticed the “shadows” have faces. I’ve seen this horror movie, and I want no part of it.
70. The Eighth Day (The Eighth Day #1) – Dianne K. Salerni
Thoughts: So he was biking along and decided to run into an I. Okay, then.
71. Now & Forever – Susane Colasanti
Thoughts: Now that’s an awkward high school kiss. Note all the space between them and the loose grips their hands have on one another. Is that stripe in her hair? It looks like someone spray painted her.
1. Acid – Emma Pass
UK vs. US: When the changes are this minor, I always wonder why the publishers even bother paying designers. Whatever. They made the covers less bright and added an explanation for the ACID acronym, like US readers wouldn’t pick it up because they didn’t know what it meant. I do not like these minor changes. UK wins.
2. The Fearless – Emma Pass
Take 1 vs. Take 2: This cover is no longer purple. That’s an improvement, but still not great. This one would benefit from not being a people cover.
3. The Naturals – Jennifer Lynn Barnes
US vs. UK: Come on, UK! You can do better than this. We practically gift-wrapped this one for you!
4. When Audrey Met Alice – Rebecca Behrens
ARC vs. Final: Not a big fan of either cover, but can I have those boots from the ARC? Please? For the boots alone, I maybe prefer that one. What is pop culture’s obsession with the president’s daughter? I don’t get it.
5. The Inventor’s Secret (The Inventor’s Secret #1) – Andrea Cremer
Take 1 vs. Take 2?: I’ve not seen any official reveals about a change to this design, but this new one is up on Amazon. I hope this is a mistake, because the clockwork heart was so much more original and adorable.
6. Revolution 19 (Revolution 19 #1) – Gregg Rosenblum
Hardback vs. Paperback: Oh good, another redesign that doesn’t change the appeal of the cover. What the cover says “IN CASE YOU MISSED IT THIS EYE IS BIONIC.”
7. Fugitive X (Revolution 19 #2) – Gregg Rosenblum
Take 1 vs. Take 2: Ew. Okay, with the first one the difference was negligible, but no no no to this. We’re being attacked by robots, but I still have time to put my mascara on!
8. The Tragedy Paper – Elizabeth LaBan
Hardback vs. Paperback: This looks like a movie tie-in cover.
9. Pawn (The Blackcoat Rebellion #1) – Aimee Carter
US vs. UK: Hmmm, I think I prefer the UK cover for not being a generic eye close-up. Plus, the US tagline is better.
WTF of the Week:
WTF of the Week began as a special category for one cover I saw, but was so popular it became a recurring feature. Here, I highlight covers, both new and old, that I’ve found, which, upon viewing, made me either snort or say something along the lines of “Dear God, what is that thing?” If you would like to be part of the fun and have spotted a truly hilarious or horrifying cover, submit it and your snark to firstname.lastname@example.org and you might be included, though I will filter through submissions and limit the number of entries per week.
1. Soul Screamers, Volume 4 (Soul Screamers #7, #0.4, #7.5) – Rachel Vincent
Thoughts: What happened to one of my favorite pretty dress series? Did it drop too much acis at Woodstock?
Outstanding Cover of the Week:
Feather Bound by Sarah Raughley
The Outstanding Cover of the Week is chosen by a Cover Snark reader. They are free to pick any of the week’s covers, whether they’re to my personal tastes or not. If you’d like to choose the cover for a week, either email or tweet me. You will need to be available Wednesday evening to consult.
Today, Welcome Miranda (Tempest Books), who has selected Feather Bound by Phoebe North. Here’s why:
“The cover of Feather Bound by Sarah Raughley definitely stood out the most to me this week. First of all, I love dresses, so this immediately appealed to me. It also really looks like The Black Swan, and is both elegantly beautiful and frightening at the same time. Her dress is made of birds, you guys. The first time you see it, it’s just pretty, but then when you take a closer look, you realize how creepy it actually is. It really makes me want to read the book!”