Hello and happy Top Ten Tuesday, folks! This week’s theme is a cover freebie, which is perfect because for the longest time I’ve wanted to take you guys through my book cover turn-offs.
Quick disclaimer: I’m not a designer and I fully admit that it can be ridiculously hard to source or design the perfect cover — this is all really just personal preference. Now that that’s over, let’s get on with it. 💕
1) Nudity (or implied nudity).
I feel like New Adult is particularly guilty of putting semi-nude men (and sometimes women) on their covers, but I must say, none of these covers have actually enticed me to buy the book. In fact, plenty of times it’s turned me off.
I get that it’s for branding — i.e. the moment you pick up a book with nudity on the cover, you immediately know what it’s about — but I’m just not into it. 🙅
2) Face close-ups.
I don’t mind if it’s tastefully done and you can’t really pick out the features of the person, but sometimes the models that cover designers have chosen don’t align with the image of the characters in my mind. It just feels a little… jarring? 😶
3) Girl in a gown.
Was it Kiera Cass’s The Selection that set off this trend? Regardless, this is an extra turn off when the story has nothing to do with girls being in gowns. 💃
4) Public displays of affection.
Hugs and embraces I’m totally on board with, but for some reason I’m just not into covers where the characters are kissing. I assume it’s because like nudity, it immediately sets a tone for the kind of book you’re reading, and while it’s probably hypocritical to say this, I don’t want to be broadcasting that to the world. 🙃
5) Seemingly explicit scenes.
Have other books screamed sex as loud as books with explicit-ish scenes on their cover? Not in my experience. 🔥
6) Too much, too soon.
OK, this probably has more to do with the back cover-slash-blurb rather than the front cover, but a blurb that tells me everything in two paragraphs? It’s just too much, too soon; I’d rather keep the mystery alive for a little bit longer. 😅
7) Repeated stock images.
Look, I get it: it can be really hard to find stock images that fit your book, let alone find one that’s within your price range… but still. If I see the same stock image being used in multiple books and it’s not manipulated to look the slightest bit different, it makes it hard to distinguish between those books. 😩
8) Unsuitable fonts.
Designs have really picked up in the last, say, eight years so I think we see less and less of this now, but there’s a time and place for everything, even fonts. Using Comic Sans MS for a fantasy novel, for example, just feels a bit out of place. It just doesn’t get the “tone” of the book right. 🙈
9) Movie adaptation covers.
I don’t know if this is just like an initial bias against movie adaptations, but the original book covers almost always look better to me. I especially don’t like it when it’s super full-on movie-like (think movie posters, with the characters all standing in model-pose). 🤔
10) Muscled men.
Must they all be similarly fit — muscles bulging and all that? It just feels unrealistic to me. 😂
What’s on your TTT this week? Leave me a link or let me know in the comments! 💁