Monday Musings: The Buck Stops At The Book Cover

Monday Musings III

I will be the first to admit, two things factor into my purchase consideration before I even read the blurb, especially if it’s an author I’ve never read before:

  • The cover
  • And the title

Yes, I am petty like that. I own it completely. And no, this is not to covertly call out anyone. I like what I like as I’m sure you do too. Now, let’s take these mock covers I created for example (Do not clown my skills. I’m an artist, and I’m sensitive about my shit):

boring-book-cover

This cover is quite ambiguous to say the least, but it’s clean and linear (Does that make sense?), but I have no idea what to expect. Is it a romance? A coming of age story? And as aesthetically pleasing as the cover is, I am more than likely to bypass this one because I see this listing right under it:

clickable-book-cover

With this gorgeous couple and “call to action” title, I immediately want to know more. What is their story? Who hurt whom? And that mini blurb under the title already gives me a clue as to what this book is about.

***

Let’s look at another example:

players

This cover is cute enough, and the title is certainly worthy of an eyebrow cock (no pun intended, ok, maybe a little one, tee hee). Honestly, I’d consider this one because the cigar and drink are kinda sexy and tells me that these dudes are real alpha jerks. But let’s look at this one:

fuckboys-anonymous

Ho-ly shit! What is this?! A story about fuckboys? The fact that the author had the balls to put “fuckboy” in the title has me going, Lemme check this out!  Oh, and that sexy sexy specimen in the background…Yeah, I took the bait, but ain’t that part of your (author) trying to claim my dollars?

Trust me, I know how challenging it is for authors to find the right cover art. It’s even more challenging for those who write characters of color. I personally know because I create my own promo graphics, and I look for artwork that best represents the characters and stories I either profile or edit, and the pickings are slim, especially when you’re on a budget and can’t afford a custom photo shoot or a quality pre-made cover. I truly get it. Well, my right brain does, but my left brain ain’t trying to hear that.

And let me also stress that I do not not buy books because I don’t like the cover. I can list ten easily with less than visually appealing covers that are among my faves, so please don’t get in ya feels about this post. I’m  just displaying a little snark...

So, my question to you is, how influential are book covers and/or titles to you when making a purchase decision?

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12 thoughts on “Monday Musings: The Buck Stops At The Book Cover

  1. Im more turned off by the title than the cover picture. I scroll right on past “My White Russian Billionaire Baby Father Who fell in Love with the Surrogate Babysitter”, no matter what the cover model looks like.

  2. Im a cover whore, I am…lols. But if a friend says *hey dont pay attention to the ugliness, its a really good book* then I may try it

  3. It’s a huge factor for me. A less than stellar cover tells me an author doesn’t care much about their product. First impressions. If you want people to pay for something, you have to show them why it may be worthwhile.

    I get having a budget and not being able to have a custom cover made I also get repetitious stock photos or lack of adequate stock when it comes to books with people of color as protagonists, but a cover is the first thing I see, and it will get me to read a blurb.

    It’s the lure that intrigues a reader. I admit I’m trying to be less critical, and I’ve given a few authors a pass on their cover art because their books are phenomenal, but it took me a long time to put my bias aside. I also realize that cover art can be excellent, but the story can be awful.

  4. I’m just not into covers like that – they can be too misleading. Nothing worse for me than reading a book and 1) the characters described look nothing like the cover, and 2) expecting whatever is depicted on the cover to happen…and it doesn’t. Titles can be misleading too, for that matter.

    I prefer a blurb that has details, and is not some ambiguous teaser, and if it’s a series and the same blurb is used for each book? I’m out.

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