Cover Snark (98): The One with the Prairie Dogs


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!

Shiny and New:

1. Swimming to Tokyo – Brenda St. John Brown
Swimming to Tokyo - Brenda St. John Brown
Thoughts: Snark has been temporarily suspended to stare at this guy. Brain cannot brain. I will also take the swimsuit.

2. Lifestyles of the Rich and (In)Famous – Tierney Fowler
Lifestyles of the Rich and (In)Famous - Tierney Fowler
Thoughts: This looks so much like a magazine it’s confusing to look at online, though presumably when on an actual book, I’ll feel less like I’ve stumbled into the wrong sort of covers.

3. The Iron Trial (Magisterium #1) – Holly Black & Cassandra Clare
The Iron Trial (Magisterium #1) - Holly Black & Cassandra Clare
Thoughts: I am giggling at the sword with wings. Is its name Hermes?

4. A Is for Alpha Male (A Is for Alpha Male #1) – Laurell Ulen Curtis
A Is for Alpha Male - Laurell Ulen Curtis
Thoughts: Huh, that’s funny. I could have sworn A was for Awful Cover.

5. Threats of Sky and Sea (Threats of Sky and Sea #1) – Jennifer Ellision
Threats of Sea and Sky - Jennifer Ellision
Thoughts: I’m feeling some definite deja vu. That, only starring Veronica Roth.

6. The Mime Order (The Bone Season #2) – Samantha Shannon
The Mime Order - Samantha Shannon
Thoughts: Yes, I’ll have the mime filet, well done, with a baked potato. Plenty of butterfly on top of the potato, of course.

7. Chasing Desire – Jennifer Domenico
Chasing Desire - Jennifer Domenico
Thoughts: Man, I just LOVE when sexy books have covers where it looks like the love interest is five seconds away from choking the heroine to death. Serial killer tendencies are a real turn on, right?

8. Afterworlds – Scott Westerfeld
Afterworlds - Scott Westerfeld
Thoughts: Is that the tear I am crying because of how bored I am by this cover? And over the fact that publishers are STILL letting EW stamp their covers like EW made them. EWWWW, indeed.

9. My Soon-to-Be Sex Life – Judith Tewes
My Soon-to-Be Sex Life - Judith Tewes
Thoughts: In the mean time, she likes to entertain herself by jumping on the bed. I really hate the font and the hearts. Like viscerally.

10. Coin Heist – Elisa Ludwig
Coin Heist - Elisa Ludwig
Thoughts: Reminds me heavily of THIS.

11. Consequences: Opal & Origin (Lux #3-4) – Jennifer L. Armentrout
Consequences Opal & Origin (Lux #3-4) - Jennifer L. Armentrout
Thoughts: This filter really isn’t flattering. It makes her look like a clown with the blush. Not cool.

12. Kia and Gio – Daniel José Older
Kia and Gio - Daniel Jose Older

13. Friends ‘Til the End – Bethany Neal
Friends 'Til the End - Bethany Neal
Thoughts: Creeeeepy and awesoooome.

14. The Girl Who Never Was – Skylar Dorset
The Girl Who Never Was - Skylar Dorset
Thoughts: Okay, this cover is not new, but somehow I missed it and I find it hilarious and it’s my blog so I do what I want. Anyway, poor girl is sitting down next to a giant pothole to admire herself in the reflection of the collected oily purple water Narcissus-style as one does, and LO what does she see? A dude. But at least her dude self who is apparently the true self is giving her a flower to lighten the blow.

15. Otherworld Nights (Otherworld Stories #3) – Kelley Armstrong
Otherworld Nights (Otherworld #1-3) - Kelley Armstrong
Thoughts: She’s probably checking to make sure her head isn’t still furry. Or maybe she’s realizing she is naked and human now.

16. Pack of Dorks – Beth Vrabel
Pack of Dorks – Beth Vrabel
Thoughts: Another one I missed, but hey I am charmed by this pack of origami…dogs? rats? Whatever, they are, they are cute.

17. A Little Something Different – Sandy Hall
A Little Something Different - Sandy Hall
Thoughts: Oooh, the cover I liked best actually won the vote Swoon Reads held, and not only that but they improved it with books and squirrels. Vair vair nice.

18. Our Own Brand of Heroine: A Paranormal Anthology
Our Own Brand of Heroine A Paranormal Anthology
Thoughts: Evidently these authors particularly enjoy a heroine who rocks the Cousin Itt look.

19. Melted & Shattered (L & J #2) – Emily Eck
Sexy couple kissing. While man touching girl ass
Thoughts: Things don’t generally shatter when they are melted. I think they are doing this in the wrong order.

20. A Vault of Sins (Chaos Theory #2) – Sarah Harian
A Vault of Sins (Chaos Theory #2) - Sarah Harian
Thoughts: I still really like this cover style, though the blue for the first cover is my personal preference.

21. Superstition (The Crownley Trilogy #1) – Ashley Britten
Superstition (The Crownley Trilogy #1) - Ashley Britten
Thoughts: For a glorious moment, I thought this was called The CLOWNLEY Trilogy, but alas. Instead it’s apparently about three girls who pouty lip their enemies into submission.

22. From the Wreckage – Michele G. Miller
House damaged by disaster. Scenery for cinema
Thoughts: For having been thrown into a field by a tornado, that chair’s in really good condition.

23. Fingers in the Mist – O’Dell Hutchison
Fingers in the Mist - O'Dell Hutchison
Thoughts: No, no, The Russians Are Coming!

24. Cipher (Shadow Ravens #1) – Aileen Erin
Cipher (Shadow Ravens #1) - Aileen Erin
Thoughts: All that futuristic technology and they can’t even get her a desk and chair? Damn. And this girls is outfit twins with THIS girl.

25. Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy #1) – Ilona Andrews
Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy #1) - Ilona Andrews
Thoughts: If you want to burn him, you should really leave his clothes on, because they’ll help him go up in flames faster.

26. Adrenaline Crush – Laurie Boyle Crompton
Adrenaline Crush - Laurie Boyle Crompton
Thoughts: Trampolines do make me feel pretty alive. Ah, the good old days.

27. Hold on Tight (Sea Breeze #8) – Abbi Glines
Hold on Tight - Abbi Glines
Thoughts: More like ABbi Glines, am I right?

28. You Make Me (Blurred Lines #1) – Erin McCarthy
You Make Me (Blurred Lines #1) - Erin McCarthy
Thoughts: Yet another new adult taking its cues from Beetlejuice Thicke. I just threw up a little in my mouth.

29. Chasing Power – Sarah Beth Durst
Chasing Power - Sarah Beth Durst
Thoughts: Rather City of Ember, only with worse font but improved shininess.

30. Unbreakable – Rebecca Shea
Unbreakable - Rebecca Shea
Thoughts: Great idea to put the title over the tagline. Just inspired.

31. Pia Saves the Day (Elder Races #6.6) – Thea Harrison
Pia Saves the Day (Elder Races #6.6) - Thea Harrison
Thoughts: At first, I totally thought the title was “Pig Saves the Day.” Also, is her mate that dragon? (At least I think it’s a dragon.) O_o

32. Radiant – Karina Sumner-Smith
Radiant - Karina Sumner-Smith
Thoughts: Is a god peeing on that city?

33. Rabble (Skulk #2) – Rosie Best
Rabble - Rosie Best
Thoughts: Only the most badass street rabble use butterflies as their symbol. The most feared creature in all the world, the butterfly.

34. Hit – Delilah S. Dawson
Hit - Delilah S. Dawson
Thoughts: Her eye is a gun. This is both incredibly clever and highly upsetting.

35. Fragile Line – Brooklyn Skye
Fragile Line - Brooklyn Skye
Thoughts: Look, a tagline that actually tells me a bit about what this book is about and intrigues me. THIS IS HOW IT’S DONE, PEOPLE. No need to hug yourself so, cover model, your tagline does not suck.

36. My Not So Super Sweet Life (My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century #3) – Rachel Harris
My Not So Super Sweet Life (My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century #3) - Rachel Harris
Thoughts: This just looks soooo homemade.

37. The Beast (The Hunter Legends #1) – Lindsay Mead
The Beast (The Hunter Legends #1) - Lindsay Mead
Thoughts: Variation on a concept, but I do find the addition of the jewel into the clockwork makes it extra shiny. Kaylee-approved.

38. Both of Me – Jonathan Friesen
Both of Me - Johnathan Friesen
Thoughts: Okay, so there are two of this individual and both fit in this backpack. So I am guessing this book is about like a ferret and his/her evil doppelganger.

Cover Battles:

1. My Best Friend, Maybe – Caela Carter

My Best Friend, Maybe - Caela Carter
My Best Friend, Maybe - Caela Carter

Take 1 vs. Take 2: I like the increased action and fun in the updated cover. And the font still matches the clothing.

2. Finnikin of the Rock (The Lumatere Chronicles #1) – Melina Marchetta

Finnikin of the Rock (The Lumatere Chronicles #1) - Melina Marchetta Aus
Finnikin of the Rock - Melina Marchetta
Finnikin of the Rock (The Lumatere Chronicles #1) - Melina Marchetta UK

Australian vs. US vs. UK: Variations on a theme. But I deeeeefinitely like the Australian one best. Pretty pretty.

3. Sway – Kat Spears / Love and Other Unknown Variables – Shannon Lee Alexander

Sway - Kat Spears
Love and Other Unknown Variables - Shannon Lee Alexander

Sway vs. Love and Other Unknown Variables: Both of these revealed this week and both using the same stock image. Even more embarrassingly, it’s not the first time this stock image has come around.

4. Cameron and the Girls – Edward Averett

Cameron and the Girls - Edward Averett hardback
Cameron and the Girls - Edward Averett

Hardback vs. Paperback: So you can choose heads or no head.

5. Fallen Too Far (Too Far #1) – Abbi Glines

Fallen Too Far - Abbi Glines Atria
Fallen Too Far - Abbi Glines German
Fallen Too Far - Abbi Glines UK
Fallen Too Far - Abbi Glines Italian

US vs. German vs. UK vs. Italian: It’s a sign of how my week has been that I totally thought “Irraggiungible” was some sort of English word I didn’t know.

6. Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares – Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares
Dash & Lily's Book of Dares - Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

US Original vs. US Redesign: These both bore me. Dash & Lily’s Book of Snores.

7. Naomi & Ely’s No-Kiss List – Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

Naomi & Ely's No-Kiss List - Rachel Cohn & David Levithan original
Naomi & Ely's No-Kiss List - Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

US Original vs. US Redesign: All yellow or stupid kissy face on a rainy background? HOW WILL I CHOOSE?

8. Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist – Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist - Rachel Cohn & David Levithan Original
Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist - Rachel Cohn & David Levithan paperback
Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist - Rachel Cohn & David Levithan movie
Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist - Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

Hardback vs. Paperback vs. Movie Tie-In vs. New Edition: I really just am not partial to these redesigns, though I guess this is the best of the lot. For me, it’s a toss up between the purple and the movie tie-in.

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 and you might be included, though I will filter through submissions and limit the number of entries per week.

1. Outlaw (The Outlaw #1) – Nicole James
Outlaw - Nicole James
Thoughts: You just know that whoever had the idea of making the title be like a tattoo felt SO clever. And the result is so realistic. Also, is he in the shower or something? In leather pants. We ALL know the problem with leather pants.

2. A Prairie Dog’s Love Song – Eli Easton
A Prairie Dog's Love Song - Eli Easton
Thoughts: Based on the cover and the blurb, I’m pretty sure this author meant a dog that lives on a prairie. You know, a prairie dog.

3. Puppy Dawg – Camille Anthony
Puppy Dawg - Camille Anthony
Thoughts: Prairie dog shifter erotica. THAT’S RIGHT. Set in a place where bikers wear leather jackets with sassy prairie dawgs sewn on the back.

Outstanding Cover of the Week:

Friends’ Til the End

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.

Friends 'Til the End - Bethany Neal

Today, welcome Rachel (As Told by Rachel), who has selected Friends ‘Til the End by Bethany Neal. Here’s why:

“I’m not really into creepy looking books, but I think this cover is both artistically creative and and also intriguing enough that I’d probably at least want to see what the book is about. It doesn’t look like every other dark and scary YA cover out there. Looking at this cover, I have so many questions that I NEED answered. Why is this kid made out of smoke (I think that’s smoke…)? Is he disappearing? Has his body been possessed? WHO IS THIS FRIEND THE TITLE SPEAKS OF??? I think the best covers are the ones that cause you to stop and think, even if for a minute, and this one does exactly that.”

To learn

15 responses to “Cover Snark (98): The One with the Prairie Dogs”

  1. Lynn K. says:

    Threats of Sea and Sky – AHA! Glad to know I’m not the only one to both points. I wonder if it’s because I was looking at Veronica’s red carpet photos recently…

  2. Annie says:

    1 – oh my gosh, yes. to the swimsuit and to the guy.

    5 – such a pretty dress, but spot on with the Veronica Roth/Star Swept Sea comparison.

    6 – I really like the simplicity that is also pretty.

    15 – I am so creeped out by that hand I can’t even….

    18 – the fact that they’re taking a quote from Twilight and tweaking for their title is about as appealing as the cover photo.

    32 – I never would have thought that, but it’s pretty funny

    33 – they also don’t look much like a rabble – just hanging nonchalantly around that dome. But the butterfly is kind of pretty

    I like both the US and Australian covers of Finnikin, but I don’t like the way they were combined. It just doesn’t quite work.
    Annie recently posted…Tattered Heart is now availableMy Profile

  3. This is the first time I’ve read this feature of yours and it’s hilarious! I’m sitting in class (let’s face it, Stats lectures are not always fascinating when the prof goes off on some long-winded ramble about software packages we don’t use) and I almost drew attention to myself laughing at the Prairie Dog covers. Totally weird and I…just…don’t understand. Yikes!
    Tara @ The Librarian Who Doesn’t Say Shhh! recently posted…Novel Ideas [59]: Negotiating With Myself: Critically Reading YA as an AdultMy Profile

  4. 1. I like how he is not overly muscled.
    2. My first thought was also: a magazine?
    3. The creepy dude on the background is nicely done.
    4. Or Atrocious.
    6. Pretty! I also believe that the side of the cover is exactly the opposite of the cover from The bone season with a red background and blue font. Great detail 🙂
    13. Very cool!
    15. Her hand is freaking me out.
    16. I thought about a fox, but after that wolfs because of the ‘pack’?
    17. Adorable 😀
    27. I kept watching at the thing in front of his face until I realized it’s his hair.. I thought it was a rope. Looks weird.
    37. I like it (+ beauty and the beast retellings are always welcome.)

    Cover battle:
    1. Redesign. So summerish.
    2. I have the US cover and it’s also the one I like the most 🙂
    Mel@thedailyprophecy recently posted…Review 247. Michelle Diener – The golden apple.My Profile

  5. 1. I missed his abs for so long it’s funny. I was considering the bathing suit and mentally redesigning it so it would fit me and hold me up.


    4. A is for All Alpha Males Get the Fuck Out Before You Meet Cinnamon.

    8. Yup, pretty boring cover. You think they’d put more effort into one of their biggest titles for fall, but nope. Nada. Like, I could see the cover divided in two with the writer girl on one side in her world and the heroine of the book she wrote in her world on the other side. They’d be leaning against the wall the divides them. I’d like that cover.


    14. I look at that and wonder if she knows she’s male inside but denies it and identifies as female. Then she stumbles across the magical pot hole full of water and sees the reflection of her true self in it and he’s giving her a rose that will encourage her to accept who she is. (I highly doubt it’s a transgender book, but that would be a lot more fun. Magical realism transgeder book. Mmmmm.)

    26. LOL poorly Photoshopped tattoo overdose.

    33. Depending on the world, that would be accurate. I remember seeing a game where butterflies were the vector for this really awful disease that rapidly took hold of you and made blood pour out of all sorts of places. Butterflies: Killers awaiting a weapon.

    6-8. I’m surprised by how much I like the redesigns. They’re not stellar, but I like looking at them. Font-centric stuff is fun.

  6. Morgan says:

    1. Oh heyyyyy!
    5. YEP. Looks like Across A Star-Swept Sea’s twin. And wow does that model look like Veronica Roth.
    6. Meh. It’s vibrant at least.
    17. Most Adorable Cover Ever!!! I want it now. Love the tree and the swirlies and the objects and the font! Plus the story sounds cute.
    21. HAH I read Clownley too. It’s pretty but very generic.
    22. I like the composition but not the models. She reminds me of Misha Barton and he reminds me of Stephen from Laguna Beach.
    38. I love shiny starry night covers 🙂

  7. 1. There is no way she can swim to Tokyo in that swimsuit. It’ll get all caught and drag!

    3. This looks so cute. And hi there, POC girl!

    5. SHE HAS SHORT HAIR! Gosh, that’s so freaking rare outside of UF. Woot!

    7. Especially when she’s grabbing his wrist like “Nope.”

    8. I thought my way here? WHERE here? Surely my imagination is better than that!

    10. Kinda boring, and yet the promise of four radically different teens on a heist? I’m there. (Kind of wishing one of them had a mohawk, though. Not sure why.)

    12. IT’S SMOKE! HER HAIR IS THE SMOKE COMING FROM HER MOUTH! Ewwww. Talk about bad breath. Also, hairballs?

    14. Her hand says “For moi? Gasp!” but her eyes say “Dude, you’re blocking my reflection.”

    16. This is adorable. Update: IT’S MG! Totally wouldn’t have guessed that.

    18. Is that title a Twilight joke? *squints*

    19. Maybe one of them is melted and the other is shattered? … You know, I don’t care enough to figure it out. *hurries away*

    24. The fingers on her right hand are creeping me out.

    25. #Immolation101 #CoverSnarkPyro

    31. I really hate her shorts. Like, loathe them.

    35. Okay, THAT’S creepy. *applauds*
    Shae/Shelver @ Shae Has Left The Room recently posted…Cover Love #50My Profile

  8. Gillian says:

    3. I was about to talk about how bad ass this illustrated cover was until you pointed out the sword with wings, which just looks like and awkwardly drawn pelican to me now. Damn you.

    4. A is for Afuck no.

    5. IT DOES LOOK LIKE VERONICA ROTH DOING ACROSS A STAR-SWEPT SEA. Whatever, I still think this is gorgy porgy.

    9. I do not like these Bloomsbury Spark covers at all.

    11. HORRIBLE.

    13. That is BEAUTIFUL.

    16. I think this is kinda adorbs.

    17. Soooo adorbs.

    18. Destroy it.

    21. These girls are airbrushed like whoa and OMG the duckface on the girl on the left.

    36. I HAAATE the way the text interrupts the title. I read it as “adrenaline what makes you feel alive crush”


    30. It took me me sooo long to read that damn tag line on the side. Also that title has been taken like a thousand million times


    35. I LOVE the eye gun but I generally hate the design of this. Oh and the shine on her lip is a bullet.

    36. That tagline is awesome.

    CB1. oooh, I approve of this redesign! Though it’s not as lesbian-shippy as the first

    CB2. Ooh, I actually like the US one best, though the Aus is super pretty.

    CB3. Plus, the one on the right looks like a rip off of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight.

    CB4. ooh, another redesign I like. UGH, apparently I am aloney on my owny there.


    Yay! I would have picked the very same cover.
    Gillian recently posted…DNF Review: Sea of Shadows by Kelley ArmstrongMy Profile

  9. Kayla Beck says:

    6. Honestly, I couldn’t care less what this cover looked like. I just want the book RIGHT NOW, DAMNIT!

    12. This must be a Tor novella. I love their artists.

    26. Her necklace looks like a knife sticking out of her chest at first glance.

    34. This cover wins the day.

    WTF2. My imagination just went to where he may be hiding that prarie dog. You know, there is this story (and true!) about a news anchor going to an ER here because of an unfortunate gerbil experience…
    Kayla Beck recently posted…Blog Tour (Review & Giveaway): The Enchanted by Rene DenfeldMy Profile

  10. Umm….why prairie dogs? I DO NOT UNDERSTAND. I’m pretty sure the guy who wears a leather jacket with a praire dog on it is the one who the guy that people avoid or laugh at (mostly laugh at)
    Michelle @ In Libris Veritas recently posted…Review: Independent Study by Joelle CharbonneauMy Profile

  11. Denai says:

    6. I don’t know why, but I immediately wanted to offer you a nice Chianti and some Lima beans to go with your order.
    13. Don’t smoke while pregnant
    14. Maybe its a retelling of the Narcissus myth with gender reversal?
    18. It took me way too long to realise that it was heroine and not heroin…
    WTF1. It formed a paste!
    WTF3. The bar has been set for jaw droppingly “what the hell”?

  12. Jessica says:

    The Andrews’ cover is upsetting. I saw it and thought Oh Sh*t! There’s Zoolander sporting garbage again! How the hell can I buy and read a book with such a bad cover?! I LOVE the Andrews but…
    Jessica recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday #3: Top Ten “Gateway” Books/Authors In My Reading JourneyMy Profile

  13. Angie F. says:

    Totally not important, but for #31, yes, her mate is the dragon. 🙂
    Angie F. recently posted…Excerpt + Giveaway: The Only Boy by Jordan LockeMy Profile

  14. fakesteph says:

    5. So true, but I still love it.

    And OUTLAW. Omg. Just… there are no words.
    fakesteph recently posted…A Break In the Radio SilenceMy Profile

  15. Bonnie says:

    2. The magazine look is bad enough but it gives me major 80s vibes which is hilarious.
    5. Wow. Not only do they totally rip off the cover but the title too.
    6. Mmmm.. butterfly. Tasty.
    8. That EW shit really pisses me off.
    12. Good grief could that be creepier?
    14. It’s like the Hex Hall covers. Except the reflection is not herself. Also kind of reminds me of Alienated.
    17. This totally reminds me of all those cutesy covers the UK puts out that I love so much.
    24. LOL Is that some half naked guy on her nifty computer screen?
    25. Great new read, great low price. I do not understand why this is being included.

    WTF… prarie dog shiter erotica??? Good grief.
    Bonnie recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday – Bookish DesiresMy Profile

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