My Top 25 Book Covers in 2010

I’m definitely not an artist but I know what pleases me when I look at a photograph, a picture, or a book cover. So for the past 2 years I published my favourite book covers and I’m doing so again, in no particular order. Some of these covers you may think are strange but for me there is an strong attraction, and every time I look at them I’m drawn once more into their essence. So here are my Top Covers for books reviewed on the site this year, and each one is quite different. Of course I could have included another 25 and I’ll probably kick myself for not adding one or 10 more, but I had to stop. 🙂 I just added Fugly because I admit this was a heinous omission. My bad. lol. Which are your favourite covers?




Author

I live in Canada and I love big dogs, music, movies, reading and sports – especially baseball

52 comments

  • The above 25 titles are a great cross section of the standouts. Thanks for doing this reguarly and thoroughly. I’m always curious to see if my faves are represented in yours, and boy were they! 🙂

    This past year Gathering Storm, Fugly, Just Desserts, At Piper’s Point really stood out for me… and all are present and accounted for! Marketing appeal is such a subjective thing, but these examples all capture something of the story inside and all demand a lingering eye. Two for two, says me.

    Facinating to watch the industry evolve and mature. Over the past 3 years, the arc of increasing sophistication has pretty clear. From what I can tell, publishers and readers are starting to take some design risks. It puts me in mind of your recent thing about the splintering of the genre into distinct subspecies. The Fair Game cover above is classic thriller but WIshink Well has all the wit and sass of a George Baxt mystery. It feels like the design is following the divisions, which is as it should be.

    After pondering your choices, I think (at long last) we have abandoned the spate of creepy Poser covers. Huzzah! And I too am getting a little weary of the depilated headless torso against a neutral saturated background. I understand WHY they work, but it’s getting harder and harder for people to do somethign fresh with a limited pool of stock photos. Generic input often means generic output, and in genre fiction that’s the kiss of death. How far can the designers and artists push the idea of M/M covers and still appeal to readers old and new?

    Really excited to see what the list for 25 Best of 2011 will look like.

    Reply
    • Hi Damon
      I love the covers on the books today. They are beautiful and dynamic and I’m so pleased that the publishers are hiring actual artists rather than using stock photos on ebooks.

      Poser covers are ugly and I hate them.

      On March 23rd I’m interviewing Reese Dante who is one of the new breed of artist in the epublishing industry so I hope you will check out the site then.

      Reply
  • You’ve got a few of my faves there – Gathering Storm especially. I also loved Miles and the Magic Flute, Rust Belt, Fall of a State and Petit Morts.

    I’m usually drawn more to photographic covers, but not the headless torsos. I like interestingly cropped images with a restricted colour scheme and bold fonts. Drawn artwork is harder to get right for me, but when it does it’s the best 😀

    Reply
    • Jo I love the photographic covers like Michael Breyette’s. I’m not fond of the headless torsos unless there is a lot more to the picture such as The Trap and A Vintage Affair which really says it all about the books.

      Reply
  • My favourite cover this year has been Fugly by KZ Snow. It so perfectly captured the theme of the book.

    I confess to a leaning towards drawn rather than photographic covers, often because they avoid the headless torso covers that I’m never very fond of – although I have to say that the cover for Rust Belt by Jessica Freely was very nice for a torso cover and is perhaps my favourite of that type for the year.

    I loved the Petit Mort covers for their vibracy.

    Anything by PL Nunn with have me tempted to press the ‘buy now’ button too :).

    Reply
    • Jenre
      You are absolutely right about Fugly and a couple of others have commented about it as well. I don’t know how I missed it but I’ve since added it. I’m now up to almost 30 covers – as the boyz say, it’s Canadian counting. lol

      Reply
  • My favorites from those above are A Deadly Game and Between a Rock and a Hard Place, mostly because they tell you a bit about the stories without giving anything away. 🙂

    For myself, my favorite covers were Fugly and Fall of a State. I don’t care for the “torso” covers too much. (Although I did really like the Oracle cover by RJ Scott.)

    Reply
    • Kirsten
      I have since included Fugly because that was one I truly overlooked, and not intentionally. Also JCP’s Sleepwalker is another one I overlooked. There are so many excellent covers every year that I could not possibly capture them in the 25 or so I publish. Thanks for mentioning a few covers that were also beautiful.

      Reply
  • I also liked the cover for “No Rest for the Wicked” from A.M. Riley.
    For a change not the image of a man from the front, works well with the colors used.

    Reply
  • Woo hoo, my illustration for Wishink Well made the list! Thank you 😀

    My favorite here is Captive–look at that clever use of shadow behind the title, and Strawberries for Dessert, again for the typography. I love typography.

    Reply
    • Jordan
      Every year when I do this I promise not to do so again because everyone kicks my butt about the ones I forgot. lol. I love Sleepwalker but by the time I remembered it I was over my limit of 25. As I told Stella – maybe I’ll sneak it in when no one’s looking. 🙂 I’m glad you liked at least a couple of my picks and you know how much I love the Petit Morts covers.

      Reply
  • Wishink Well is unique, my favorite on this list along with At Piper’s Point. Sleepwalker is my favorite but it’s not on the list. It has similar coloring as Between a Rock and A Hard place. I like that one too.

    Reply
    • Stella
      Sleepwalker is also a favourite but I didn’t remember until I had already posted this and I was over my limit as Tj and Buda pointed out. 🙂 Let it be said that I regret not including Sleepwalker – maybe I will when no one’s looking.

      Reply
      • Since you added Fugly, your list is lopsided. Better go ahead and add the other one, too. Otherwise I’m going to be looking at you funny…. 🙂

        Reply
        • Thank you Buda! I was thinking the same thing. It looks like the whole stack of book covers are gonna come tumbling down with only one at the bottom!

          Reply
        • Are you counting? I was hoping to sneak in the other cover when you weren’t looking. Damn! You noticed Fugly so I have no choice but to continue my Canadian counting. 🙂

          Reply
          • Wave you are completely out of control. Just step away from the computer and STOP ADDING COVERS!!. 25 is now a just distant memory. LOL

            Reply
            • I’ve stopped reading the comments and I promise NO MORE. I only added one. *giggle* YOU have to look away and I’ll step away. This is such fun. Canadian counting is so much better than American. 🙂

              Reply
            • Sometimes YOU need to just look away. 🙂 This is all your fault and Teddypig’s who harangued me about Fugly, and then you said the covers would come tumbling down if I didn’t add one more to balance it. lol. I’m off to bed and I’m not looking at the comments any more.

              Reply

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