Wednesday, January 18, 2017

I Have James Rollins Covered!

One thing I've noticed the further this blog series progresses is that I've started to sound as though I know what I'm doing when it comes to putting together a book cover. I'm going to channel a president who, until recently, was my least favorite.... Let me make this perfectly clear: I do not know how to put together a saleable book cover. I only know what I like to see. (Perhaps I should do a post showing covers that make me do a happy dance? There's some food for thought.)

This week I've chosen the U.S. and U.K. covers of one of James Rollins' thrillers. After all, I've enjoyed every book of his that I've read, and he's a nice, entertaining guy who comes to The Poisoned Pen a lot. Oh, the arcane ways I choose these covers!

Speaking of covers, let's take a look, shall we?


The US Cover...

The US cover is rather generic and pale, don't you think? In this case I'm not going to rail against the blurbs, because-- between the blurbs and the black type of the title-- they're the only things livening this cover up. I know this is unkind, but...this cover is a big yawn. Hopefully I'd see Rollins' name as I walked past so I would know to pick this up.

The UK Cover...

Now, the UK cover is a bit drab colorwise, too, but it stands out to me. The red used for Rollins' name has very little to do with it. Why? Because what grabs my attention is that hole in the ground. Couple that hole with the crossed pick axes and smiling skull at the top, and my imagination wants to run amok. 

There's also no blurbs to mess up this cover, just a little teaser that makes my foot bear down on the accelerator of my imagination. What's in that hole? If I get any closer is something going to jump out and grab me? I'd definitely want to pick this up to read the synopsis, and all because the artist who designed the cover appealed to my imagination, which is the best thing that person could do.

The Verdict...

I haven't hidden my opinion at all. You know I really like the UK cover this week!

What Say All of You?

What about you? Which cover catches your eye? US? UK? Neither one? Too close to call? Inquiring minds would love to know!



  1. Yep, the UK cover it is. The hole is quite scary. I'd be worried that the area around it would collapse. I've enjoyed Rollins' books too. :-)

    1. You've definitely got a point about the collapsing edge!

  2. I'm with you, Cathy! That UK cover is exactly right.

  3. I'm with the others. UK cover no doubt.
    And by the way, most publishers don't know what makes a salable cover either. I think I'll ask your advice, Cathy!

    1. Thank you, Michael, but I don't know how much help I'd be!

  4. I'd say neither grabs me, but if I had to choose, it would be the British cover, even though it scares me. (I don't like the skull.)

    What makes it stand out to me is that the writer's name is in red, so there's a little more color.

    But surely for this author, a more zippy cover could have been designed.

    1. This is one of his earlier novels which is probably why it's not got a zippy element.


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