The Cover Wars: The Canadian Edition


The Cover Wars is a feature that sees the book warriors debating over the merits of several book covers, arguing, agreeing and giggling. It hasn’t yet come to blows but we are a passionate lot so that’s not entirely off the table. I’m totally joking. Really.


Steph: It looks old, it looks classic, and it looks like something I wouldn’t be drawn to. A story about school girls coming of age, a friends story. It looks like something that would be assigned in a class because there will be a major theme and then a clear resolution and lesson. ^_^ I haven’t read this Kit Pearson book, and I know I’m one of the few, it’s on the list so of course I’ll read it. But, if Kit weren’t a famous Canadian author I don’t know that I’d ever read it.

Janet: I remember reading this for fun in elementary school (and, of course, since then), so my opinion may not be worth much. The title draws me much more than the cover, although I like the colour scheme (sky and tree). I also like how the focus is on the two girls, neither of whom is posing or fashionable-looking. Private-school stories have to be old fashioned or historical (or Harry Potter) to appeal to me, and this one is.

Nafiza: I would totally go for this. Do you remember the last time I saw two girls on a cover without the presence of a male? Hmm…I can’t think of any though I’m sure there must have been one or two. I like that the cover points to friendship between females, something that is vastly lacking in YA lit (though I’m not sure whether the above can count as YA or if it’s MG).

Yash: I’m with Nafiza. It reminds me of Malory Towers by Enid Blyton and somehow this might be a great deal better because everyone here seems to love Kit Pearson.


Steph: It’s a photo, it’s colourful, there is rain. Overall, slightly eye-catching but really kind of boring. The type doesn’t help with the “Wow! I gotta read this” factor – meh? I have heard Paul Yee speak, and I have heard a thesis defense addressing one of this novels (The Bone Collector’s Son) and that makes me excited to read his writing. There are always ghosts or some supernatural elements, there are appealing characters and wonderful descriptions. So, again, I will read this because Paul Yee is profound in Canada, but this cover is not really what is going to make me pick it up.

Janet: The lights are appealing – colour! – and rain seems very fitting. Cityscapes don’t draw me, but I might make an exception for this one. If the back blurb is good.

Nafiza: I’m a bit wary of this one. I don’t know what the rainy, wet street has to do with a money boy unless he chooses rainy wet nights to go hawking in the city. It is intriguing though and I would read the book to find out more about it.

Yash: I love this. I love the photography and I love the lights and the rain makes me feel like it’s a Vancouver novel- and even if it isn’t, check out the title. It sounds intriguing. I’m in!


Steph: I have heard of these books. The cover looks contemporary, however, I’m not sure it’s a good thing with this – a historical fiction/ mystery – text. A girl on the cover in a dress is a common trope of YA lit which is not my fave. This time the swirlys on the bottom are a no-no and all the different fonts plus the font with the key as the ‘E’ is just overkill for me. Yay to Canadian written historical mysteries, boo to this cover.

Janet: Ugh, too posed. This cover looks fake to me, so no – although I’ve heard good things about the author. I think Steph’s last sentence says it all.

Nafiza: I understand where you two are coming from but the fact that they put a POC on the cover wins points from me. As for its contrived nature, I tend to be more forgiving because the books are super brilliant.

Yash: This cover … does not do it for me. And I didn’t even realise it was a POC until Nafiza’s comment here. (I know. I’m careless.) The title and subtitle do draw me in though. I would definitely read the back at the very least.


Steph: Yay! A Stella book! I love Marie Louise Gay, and this is another of her adorable covers. I would of course pick it up and the lovely art makes sure of it. Plus I love snow. Yay snow!

Janet: Ha ha, oh Steph. Stella looks the way I feel when it snows. Time for a trip to the library, methinks.

Nafiza: I’m the one who would have her face pressed to the window to look at the snow falling but would hate to venture out in it. That said, I truly love this cover. It’s so reminiscent of what childhood is all about: unequivocal joy in the simplest things.

Yash: I like what Nafiza said. I think the good part of this book is that I get to read it and not actually be outside. Unless you have kids (or a Steph). In which case, you might find yourself reading this aloud on a snowy porch.


Steph: I liked this book. The cover is charming, I enjoy the painting style – it depicts Jack but still lets me imagine what I think Jack really looks like, I get to give him a little more character in my mind. This is a clever and wonderful book, it’s short and the cover is pretty representative of the story within.

Janet: Fantastic book! The cover hints at the beauty and playfulness of the story within, and does so subtly rather than with a sledgehammer (i.e. the cover sets the mood, it doesn’t bash me over the head with this-is-how-you-must-feel). Very nice!

Nafiza: I loved this book and I think the cover captures the whimsical tone of it absolutely well. Also the look in Jack’s eyes is kind of sly, kind of mischievous which is exactly how I pictured him.

Yash: *gulp* Have not read a single one of Sarah Ellis’ books. But! I guess I’ll start with this one? He seems like a charming Tom Swayer-like character, and I like the artwork, and I can feel the glares of the rest of my team here, so yes, on my TBR list. Okay? Okay. Moving on.


Steph: Ah Robert Paul Weston, I haven’t read anything by him yet though Zorgamazoo sits upon my ‘to read’ shelf and I will read that, a novel in verse, because I’m curious. This, however, looks like … well it kinda looks silly? Is that fair? I mean really corny, like on of those movies entitled The Mist and then something comes out of the mist and eats people. This is called Dust City and I just have to wait for dusty green eyes on the cover to come out and start feasting on people. That’s what I assume this is going to be based on the cover… and I’m not sure I’m in for it.

Janet: What is with people and wolves? I love wolves, and that thing on the cover does not look anything like a wolf, big and bad or otherwise. Wolves usually have amber eyes, and exceptions are pale, not glow-in-the-dark. I do not see what the “wolf” and blurb, the city, and the title have to do with each other. There just isn’t a connection. The ominous cityscape could be effective, especially combined with the title, but the cosmic wolf-thing makes the cover kind of silly.

Nafiza: Okay, so my reaction to the cover is coloured by the fact that I read the book and know what it’s all about and given that, I think the cover fits the story. The wolf in question is the son of the wolf who killed Red Riding Hood and I think the green eyes are a warning that he may go over to the dark side any time. Of course, anthropomorphic characters are difficult to put on the cover without making it cheesy so again, I don’t mind the cover. READ THIS BOOK! It very smartly incorporates several fairytales to create a smart, dark story that’ll leave you think.  I’m just saying.

Yash: The wolf’s eyes are over a cityscape- which makes me feel like this is not just a wolf story, it is a werewolf story. (But … looking at Nafiza’s comment makes me feel like that’s not quite the case?) Anyway, I feel like it’s not that cheesy. Not to me. I like how the natural elements and the cityscape engulf the title and the title itself is pretty cool. Yes. I want in.