(Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme brought to you by The Broke and the Bookish. Want to make your own list? Clicking the image will take you to this week’s post. Happy listing!)
In the recent Bookish Pet Peeves edition of Top 10 Tuesday, I saw lots of people listing “Crappy book covers” as something that annoyed them. Today those people (and me too!) get to play publisher and remake those book covers that just didn’t do it for us.
1. Pride and Prejudice (1994 edition) – It’s not so much the image that’s bad; it’s the tagline that makes me crazy: “Mom’s fishing for husbands — But the girls are hunting for love…” This tagline is completely misleading: it makes what is arguably one of the best books in English literature sound like a paperback dime novel! Whomever created this cover and that tagline should be fired.
2. Rebecca (year unknown) – What the hell, Mr. Publisher? Du Maurier’s book is a suspense/thriller/gothic, not a trashy romance novel. I suspect this one will make it on to a lot of lists — it’s just too wrong to not mention it.
3. Gone with the Wind (1991 edition) – Again with the naughty novel. Gone with the Wind has its moments of swoony-ness, but overall it’s a sweeping epic, with commentary on slavery and feminism. Why is Scarlett depicted as a half-naked weakling? Obviously this publisher knows nothing about her character.
4. Insatiable (original cover) – I had to stare at this cover for a few minutes before I realized exactly what bugs me about it: Where is her head? It seems like almost every book these days has a picture of an impossibly beautiful girl’s face on it; so why did this publisher go to all the trouble of having an entire body, but no head? It feels kind of creepy and demeaning to me.
5. One of Our Thursdays is Missing (original cover, America) – I don’t really hate this cover, but it doesn’t have the same feeling as the first five novels in the series. I much prefer the British version (pictured second), which has that same insane, imaginative feel as the artwork on the first five books.
6. New Moon (2009 edition) – For the love of all that is holy, get these actors off the book cover! Yes, what’s-his-face is cute, and the other-what’s-his-face looks great without a shirt, and what’s-her-face looks suitably virginal and vapid, but I much prefer the original covers. This goes for all books that follow this route. It’s annoying and distracting and panders to those who were too lazy to read the book first, and are only hopping on the bandwagon now because the movie is popular.
Not a long list, but certainly an all-encompassing one. Obviously I don’t like covers that mislead the reader as to the content of the pages, and I don’t like when companies re-release books after the film version has been wildly successful.
Man, these last few weeks have been real downers. Here’s hoping for a happier list next week!
What book covers drive you crazy?
6 thoughts on “Top 10 Tuesday: Book Covers I’d Redesign”
Completely agree with that Rebecca cover – it’s the sole reason I never read it until this year. It screams dime store trashy romance! So when I finally found the newer version with a more accurate gothic cover, I read it – and loved it!
I didn’t read Rebecca until high school, although I knew the basic plot before that. Fortunately the version I bought had a much more appropriate cover, but several of my classmates bought the “romance novel” version, and we noticed it even then. When even a bunch of 17 year-olds think something is trashy… :p
What great choices!!
What a tragedy for the P&P cover and taglines, likewise the Rebecca version. It’s impossible to take a book seriously when they trashy-novel-ize the cover.
One of my pet peeves is when they put the movie actors on the cover. I make it a point to never buy that version of the book.
And I’m with you on Insatiable, too. The cover seems like an afterthought.
I hate when book covers are misleading. Not only does it make classic, wonderful novels look cheap, it misleads people who are looking for those things: then they read these classic novels and hate them, and write terrible reviews about them, and then the books get a bad rap.
I don’t think I have any book versions with the film actors on the cover. If I did I’d have to hang my head in shame. 🙂
I’ve never read Insatiable, but I get the basic plot. The photo is kind of irrelevant, and I keep feeling that her being headless is some sort of commentary or metaphor—and not a nice one.
That Pride and Prejudice cover is an abomination. Ha! Obviously, people not familiar with the book went ahead and designed the thing anyway.
Good choices. Although I kind of like the Jasper Fforde cover. I think it’s one of those that works better in actuality. I’m reading the book now and the cover has grown on me. 🙂
My copy of that edition of Pride and Prejudice is actually my mom’s copy; she hates the cover so much that she gave up a copy of one of her favorite books. 🙂 She got a replacement copy with a much better cover, fortunately.
I’m enjoying Fforde’s book, and I don’t hate the cover. I’m just so used to the cartoonish, crazy covers on the previous novel, and I don’t really understand why the woman on the cover is dressed like a secretary from the 1950s. …And an excessive amount of cleavage, now that I look closer. I’m glad it’s grown on you, though. Are you enjoying it so far?