Friday, November 22, 2013
How important are book covers in getting you to read a book?
I feel like I need to add that I totally work at a bookshop now and it’s rather wonderful. Definitely my best job ever and I’m sad that it will be over come Christmas time!
For me the book cover is the reason that I pick up a book in the first place. If it has an interesting cover then I’m more likely to pick it up. I don’t like to read the genre (I had to look this up) that’s called “Misery Lit” – the true tales of children who suffered horrendous abuse as they were growing up such as A Child Called It, so a book cover that looks like it’s in that genre would not induce me to pick it up.
On the other hand, while I was doing some of my training for my current job I picked up a beautiful book to use for the till practice – dark red, kind of burgundy, with a plum fleur de lis style motif. It was simply stunning and I was tempted to buy it just because. It turned out to be a collection of erotic short stories. I have nothing against erotic short stories, and it was a truly admirable cover. On the other hand, I just couldn’t bring myself to use it in till training.
Even though a book cover is quite important as to whether or not I’ll take it off the shelf, there are still rigorous tests that it needs to pass before I’ll buy or read it! First you check the cover, then the blurb and then finally I like to dip in and out of the book at random points to see if I like the writing style. If I want to keep turning the pages, then I’m more than likely to want to fork out money on it.
I’m not sure I would buy multiple copies of the same book just to have it in different book covers though, as I know that some people at work have done. I saw a lovely version of some of Pratchett’s Discworld which have been released with a different cover but I think I love the original artwork a bit too much to want to change up. Plus then there’s the fact that he’s written a bajillion books and there is no way that I could afford to replace them all!
I love leather and fabric bound books. There’s just something so sumptuous about sitting down and reading a book with a lovely textured cover. I don’t mind glossy books, but I’m definitely a love it until it’s battered and torn kid of person. I am like that with pretty much everything I own – clothes I love get worn threadbare, books end up with battered corners, electronics get carried around to be used as much as possible and cookery books get stains on my favourite recipes.
Recap? Book covers are pretty important as a first impression – I mean, that’s what they’re there for! I will pick up a book which had an interesting cover over a book that has a beach, a couple hand in hand and a sappy title. But that’s only the beginning, and the rest of the book is far more important than what contains it.