The Cover Wars: Softer Colours

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This week’s cover wars is not according to theme. I apologise most sincerely and hope you enjoy the feature anyway.

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Nafiza: I kind of like this? I’m not too fond of the heart because it seems like the girl’s choice will depend on where she falls in love (and I guess with who) but I like the map and the colours. But would I read the back? I’m not sure. Depends on the kind of mood I am in when I spy it in the bookstore.

Steph: Haha, well, the tagline is a little over-the-top for me. I’m not very sure what the premise is besides romance and something to do with travel. Will she need to choose between love and travel or will she fall in love while she travels? Both? Will there be a travelling love triangle? I like the map, I think that contemporary peeps travel a lot and that love and travel get a little tangles up, so this is a good premise for today’s market. I think this one looks more like an adult literary romance novel than a YA book, but that in itself is intriguing. I don’t know that I’d read the book, or the back for that matter, but I don’t totally hate this.

Janet: I like the map. Colour, the unknown, travel, the security of the classroom (hey, the map reminds me of elementary school, okay?), the angle of the map… all appeal. The title, tagline, and popsicle-stick heart don’t. I’d read the back, though.

Yash: Okay, quick disclaimer here- I actually loved the selection for this edition and would probably have picked up any of them and read the backs at least. So, as the person writing last, I am going to just be nit-picky because what else can I say? I really love these! So yeah, I would have liked this cover better if it didn’t have a heart-pin. Why can’t her travel be about her alone? Is it too selfish a thing to read about?

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Nafiza: Ah, I don’t like this. It seems too untidy and chaotic for me and I can usually stand for chaotic things. I mean, usually I like illustrated covers but I wish this one had picked a theme. Or perhaps the layout is what’s bothering me. I don’t know.

Steph: Really? I think this is adorable! I like the colours and the illustration – I like the chaos! You know how the original gothic novel was always held in a haunted house with many room and the many confusing rooms were meant to mirror the protagonists mind (wow, quick theory run down for you) – this calls that to mind. The White House is an interesting, many-roomed setting, a little too American perhaps, but I think it would be an orderly space all cluttered up with girlish fun! Yes, I’d read the back. ^_^

Janet: The period clothes and equipment (an ink pen!) are interesting, but overall there isn’t enough of a focus. The doodle style is interesting – perhaps one of the title characters keeps a journal, or writes notes or letters, but again, the tag line turns me off. Although the title intrigues. Female friendship and rebellion? The back cover would have to pull me one way or the other .

Yash: Yes. I do like this cover. I even kind of like the tagline. It’s cheesy but not the kind of cheesy you would expect- it refers to a female friendship instead of a heterosexual romantic relationship. And I like that not all of the objects/icons pictured are stereotypically “girly”. Personally, I want to know what that snake is about! So yes, I’d read the back. Maybe even a chapter.

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Nafiza: This has a really old school vibe to it and since I love stories that deal with the entire family, I would totally read the back. I don’t know if I like the art exactly but I’m willing to forgive it as it does sufficiently express the characters. Plus, misadventures, you guys! Who doesn’t love misadventures?

Steph: I love misadventure! AND I love cats, and this has promised both. I too am not a huge fan of the sketchy-misproportioned art, but it’s charming enough and I think it’s meant to work with the lighthearted feel of misadventure! I also enjoy stories that touch on each member of the family – though I do look for a family story that doesn’t succumb to stereotypes (brainy younger siblings irritate me, but maybe that’s because I’m the oldest of two and clearly the brainy one – I just want to relate to someone!). ^_^ I would read the back.

Janet: The title is a draw. I’ll have to agree with Nafiza and Steph – normally, I’m not fond of this kind of artwork, but in this case it seems just quirky and charming enough to work. I’m curious about the book’s definition of “family,” as the four humans on the cover don’t look related. A family of both biologically and non-biologically related members? Friends who function as a family? Misadventures, a cat, and a dog? I’m in.

Yash: MISADVENTURES! PATCHWORK FAMILY! IS THIS GOING TO BREAK MY HEART BUT ALSO MAKE ME GIGGLE LIKE LILO AND STITCH?! (What? No. I am not having an emotional moment. My caps lock was just … stuck.)

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Nafiza: This one is almost identical to the first one  (not really but you know what I mean) and I may like this one slightly more because of the crinkle effect. Also the destination points make me smile because it’s so cleverly done. He/She comes to loss then moves on to hope and then finally love. There is a happy ending right there! It’s subtle and how I like my covers rather than be smacked with red hearts that say too much.

Steph: Crinkle effect? I like this one because there isn’t a stupid tagline. I’m not a big fan of how X marks the spot of love, I think that’s rather blunt and I therefore know that this person will travel to the spot where love will be found. A nice neat package. Meh.

Janet: The map, highlighter effect, and crinkle effect (look what you’ve started, Nafiza!) place the holder of the book in the place of the protagonist who holds and write on the map – a nice change from the voyeurist style of cover. I’m not sure about the “love”; frankly, romance doesn’t solve everything, so if that is the kind of love that is intended, I’m disappointed. The cover promises more, however, so I’d look at the back and probably the inside as well.

Yash: What if by some interesting twist the character starts with love and ends with loss? No? Too much? Okay. Fine. I still like this. I don’t agree with Nafiza though- I don’t think it’s subtle at all. I almost prefer the brazen heart-pin. That is not, however, to say that I dislike this cover. I kind of love it. The crinkle effect works well. It’s just the map doesn’t suit the title. The trajectory is too neat for something called Let’s Get Lost. Unless they do go into uncharted territory. (Imagine a fourth highlighted area way off in the distance: GRAD SCHOOL?! Dun dun dun!)

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Nafiza: I don’t think this gels with me. I mean, I like the colours but the change in the font (colour?) and the broken glass thing. It is a bit too confusing for me. Where is this going? Is this going somewhere? What kind of story is this? The cover doesn’t give me anything and probably won’t hold my interest for that very reason.

Steph: No. Again with the bubbles… do bubbles attract a female readership or something? I might have liked the cityscape with the silhouette (well, ugh, silhouette) because then it would have stuck to one idea. As it stands… is this dystopian? It has that feel. Like an Ally Condie Matched kind of story (which also features pretty bubbles btw). If it’s dystopian I would read the back, if it’s a remake of Matched – girls are a commodity and are given to powerful guys and then she has to figure out who she loves, there’s probably a love triangle… ugh Well, I probly won’t read it.

Janet: Why is it important that it is a girl called fearless (or Fearless)? On one hand, the fact of being female makes a huge difference to one’s experience of life; on the other hand, the emphasis on the fearless character’s female status hints that fearless is not the usual way of girls, that this character is exceptional, the exception that proves the rule, or that somehow her fearlessness is undermined by her femininity. (I.e. another Chosen One novel.) Mind you, I don’t know if any of this is the case, but that is what the title suggests. I like the blues, but the silhouette has got to go. The writing changing colour and font, most atypically, does not annoy in this case, as the glass (?) functions as a border, suggesting concealment coming to an end, danger/risk, and dramatic change, which has potential.

Yash: Everyone knows what I will say here, so I won’t say it. I won’t. I won’t, I won’t, I won’t. Putting that aside, I am very intrigued by it. The broken glass gives this impression of being trapped and/or seeing things from a muted perspective but the girl seems to be standing in the clear. I am curious about what the glass stands for, and the city, and well … also the girl. I would definitely read the back.