A while ago we’ve done a Genre by Cover Quiz, where we showed you covers and had you guess the genre. I was looking on Amazon for unrelated reasons, trying to find something for Mod R, and stumbled on this.
To be clear: THIS IS NOT A BOOK RECOMMENDATION. I have not read any of these books and have no idea how fun they are. I just wanted to show you what happens when publishers want to make sure their book fits into a particular genre category.
These are 4 books in unrelated series by 4 different authors. There are more with the same cover treatment and exact same color scheme.
Publisher driven genre placement: you see it in action.
I don’t even have to say but just in case, please do not be critical of authors in the comments. Authors have very little say in what goes on the cover.
If you read any of these titles and liked them, please let us know in the comments below. However, please do not recommend other books. We have a book recommendation thread for that.
OMG they don’t even have the decency to be marketing nautical romances! Though I guess then there would be a boat? For some reason the teal math made me twitchy.
Donna A says
I take part in publisher surveys sometimes and I often answer questions about covers with statements about how it looks like “crime” or “romance” based on picture style or font and colour.
What annoys me though is sometimes there’s a question about which you like best or similar and there’s no option for none of them.
Moderator R says
And that’s the real crime.
But “neither” can be a totally valid response, particularly if the font or colors are combined poorly!
Donna A says
If a survey doesn’t have the option “none of the above” or “other – fill in answer here” when that’s the option I want, then I tend to leave it unfinished.
To be fair the publishing house (I won’t name them) are pretty good with their options but every now and then there’s a survey which tries to lead me.
And sometimes there’s one that just completely ignores certain options. Often they try to gather knowledge about yourself first and your reading habits.
Apparently non-fiction philosophy doesn’t exist as an option for reading and non-fiction science is not only not sub-genred it’s attached to nature (are they claiming it as an analogous term for biology – who knows, apparently we all only read teal coloured light fiction books I guess).
I hate when the covers all look the same. To me, the covers posted here all look like a cost saving measure. Pick a color, throw in some stock figures, and then some other stuff that represent the title, and done. They look like they were made in 1 hour by an AI.
Margot D says
And they’re absolutely everywhere. They all look the same.
The stock/traced/vector figures ? The worst part. Like, please. Commission actual artists. *shake fists*
Margot D. says
(ps : I’ve started to notice this a few years ago, actually. Weirdly (and most possible, wrongly) I feel like this started after the success of RWRB.)
Moderator R says
Red, White and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston. I do think these types of covers were well on their way by 2019, however 🙂
Margot D. says
Regina ; Sorry, yes – Red, White and Royal Blue. 100%
Moderator R ; Yeah, I don’t doubt it. It’s mostly when I started to realize. Probably because I don’t usually pay attention to romance books, as it’s not really my thing. But after RWRB, each time I saw a cover, and more than ever an Indie cover for some reason, I more often than not, immediately recognized the pattern.
(most likely because, for how much I love RWRB, and I do -which if worth noting because again, not a friend of the romance genre usually- I’m not a fan of the cover. The French version (“My dear F**cking Prince”, do we have to be this French ? why) is slightly different, but still no.)
Of course, all of this is subjective. *thumb up*
Moderator R says
I’m more perplexed by the fact that it’s not…in French? Maybe I don’t have the right cover.
Margot D. says
To this day, I. don’t. know. 😭
And no – it IS the French version. I was just as confused, like for a moment there I thought it simply hadn’t been translated in French, which, reaaaaa-lly ?, but I actually caught a glimpse of the first page, and it is, in fact, the French version.
Just who decided that Rouge, Blanc, et Bleu Royal wasn’t good enough ? I want a word. Actually, I want several words.
See ? this is why I do my best to read the thing in the language it was written in.
In Germany some publishers started to use English titles for German books.
Sometimes books written in German by a German, sometimes translated from English to German. Worst of all – in one time I remember, they didn’t translate the title but changed it to a different english one.
Had never heard of it, thanks for the anecdote.
I really don’t understand why they did that here, it’s really stupid!
I would understand not translating (although: lazyyyy) but using a different title like this??
Lily T says
I’m not saying it was a good or bad decision, but maybe because we refer to our flag as “Bleu Blanc Rouge”, which is not in the same order anyway, could confuse some people that the book is about French people?
(Also, I’m told that saying “BBR” is (was?) slang in recruiting world for wanting only, well… certain people. Maybe related, or not.)
And I’m with you with wanting to read a book in original written language, but alas, I do only know English other than French. (Which is kind of funny as I don’t read as much in French as I do in English and now I tend to think in English and sometimes have to search for words when talking to people.)
What started the death of graphic design is user friendly design programs. Everyone has a version of Photoshop they can use to process images, and with no artistic training whatsoever they set up shop as graphic designers. Um, can you tell I’ma graphic designer?
Rozanne Cadotte says
Yeah, me too. Trained as a graphic designer and lost out in my job to a person trained in the programs but not as a designer? No artistic eye at all!
And looking at book covers, reading some of them and finding no relationship in the design to the story really stumps me. I get that the publisher drives the covers, but don’t they read the book before assigning a cover designer or having someone design the cover? Something? Anyone?
I choose my next read by looking at the cover and reading the blurb and a few of the first few pages. After reading, if I give a rating, part of it may be based on if either of those things related to the story.
Unless, of course, it is one of my favorite and well known to me authors, in which case its an automatic buy and read! And Ilona Andrews is one of those on the top of that list.
Cindy Montalbano says
TBH Modern AIs would take less than a second now to put this together.
e.g. => Dall-e. https://openai.com/dall-e-2/
As a software engineer I give it about 10 years before all decisions like this are made by AIs. Maybe 15, tops.
Cris Reads says
I’ve read and really enjoyed both The Kiss Quotient and The Hating Game.
Thank you, Toni! I am really glad you commented because I hoped the authors would get a shout out. This kind of color treatment is a double edged sword: on one hand, your genre is very clear; on other hand, the covers tend to blend.
I used to pick up books based on the cover when I was looking for a new to me author, back in the old bookstore days. The better the cover art, then I figured the author had more backing from the publisher. It got to the point where I could even recognize certain artists (Jody Lee in particular) from their style.
Agree on the Jody Lee. Also Thomas Canty
Wow, haven’t thought about Thomas Canty in years. thanks for the reminder
Leslie Sexton says
I had to look them both up. I remember their art when I saw it. I learned how to draw folds on clothing from Thomas Canty’s beautiful art.
Rebecca Lysohir says
Helen Hoangs books are great – takes a slightly different view of romance genre.
It may be just me but I find the covers a tad misleading!
Personally, these type of covers read as jaunty, flirty fun…but I’ve seen it applied to historical/contemporary romances that have heavier content. I find it kinda misleading as cover art…and weirdly, these fun covers come with blurbs that are lighter than some of the actual content!
Loved the kiss quotient and enjoyed the Hating game (the movie was light and fun too)!
Moderator R says
That definitely happens! I picked one up because it said on the cover that it was a rom-com ( and had this type of art), and instead it was anything but! Long term PTSD over the loss of a parent, job anxiety etc. 🙁
+ on kiss quotient. Writes emotions and vulnerabilities well
Author has a couple of others involving the same cast of characters which were okay too but a little repetitive. Covers are different colors but similar treatment
Sara T says
I’ve read both as well and really liked them.
Same here. And have sought out additional books by these authors (independent of cover style/color 🙂).
I loved The Kiss Quotient and liked The Hating Game very much. I did not pay any attention to the book covers.
Same! I really liked both.
I’ve read those same books. I don’t well remember The Hating Game but Kiss Quotient is good as I recall.
On the style, I HATE HATE HATE the copy covers and colors. HATE! There are several light Paranormal romance series doing this and I keep getting them all mixed up, I only like ONE of the authors and really dislike the others, so I’ve ended up not reading the only one I like because I keep getting confused.
Same. I still re-read “The Hating Game” at least once a year. Since I read almost exclusively on my Kindle now, I don’t pay much attention to covers. I pick books based on the description and the Goodreads reviews. Back in the day of going to bookstores, I definitely remember judging books by their covers. I can remember disliking the original Kate Daniels covers and thinking House Andrews would get the recognition they deserved if they had better covers. In general, I hate covers with real people on them or full faces because I would rather use my own imagination.
Me too, on both accounts. I really like The Kiss Quotient.
Whitney B says
I also quite enjoyed The Kiss Quotient. It’s also an Own Voices book, which I love.
Yes those are the two I’ve read also and like you enjoyed them both.
I’ve read The Hating Game (enjoyed) and The Kiss Quotient (REALLY enjoyed). I selected both based on the author and the synopsis.
Rebecca G-T says
I’ve read both The Kiss Quotient (I gave it 5 stars on Goodreads) and Hook, Line, and Sinker (I gave that one a 3 on Goodreads). Hook, Line, and Sinker is cute and entertaining but not a book I couldn’t put down. Five stars are for books I can’t put down. (And become obsessed with the author and read everything they have ever written.)
I read both of them as well and would give similar ratings! I think I started The Hating Game and didn’t finish.
I like this color in general. I just painted my downstairs rec room this color. 😀
It also looks like they’re moving away from using actual models.
Yeah, I think “no models” is part trend, part cost saving. Photos shoots can be complicated and still not produce the desired look. Saw one in action and it was initially neat, then became kind of tedious as the hours went by. The paper doll images usually denote a beach read–cosy mystery or rom-com.
I’ve failed before with that mindset! I expected a rom-com or cosy based on the cover and ended up with a very sad book instead!!
Moderator R says
Same! I had a whole rant at poor Ilona this afternoon about it, it feels so “bait and switch”. Una hirundo non facit ver and one sassy best friend does not a rom-com make! Even if the couple gets together, which is technically the main requirement for rom, if you’ve given me heavy subject side-plot, it’s not com and I am not having a funny frilly time. I’m having contemporary romance time (which is also nice, just not what I aimed for in the moment).
Tasha A says
Me too!! Hate when that happens! THis is why i try to avoid choosing on covers.
I aslo tend to look for spoilers. I’m notorious for reading the last chapter of a book, or reading the synopsis of a show or movie before i watch it. For some reason I enjoy it more! HA!
My friend does that. She says she can get into the story better if she isn’t worrying about how it ends.
I do this. If it’s a book I’m not sure about or a show that makes me nervous I skip ahead or try to find spoilers because I enjoy it so much more not worrying about the outcome.
Note if it is an author or a director/franchise I trust I’m more willing to be surprised because I know they will leave me content with the outcome.
I‘m personally glad about the no actual models – for some reason having a photo of a real person damages the self-created images in my head in a way a drawing doesn’t, even beautifully realistic drawings like those by Luisa Preissler. I realise this is possibly a personal quirk though.
Scott McCloud in Understanding Comics talks about the ease of projection onto more simplified/stylized artwork as opposed to more realistic, so maybe not just you 🤔
+1 on Understanding Comics. An excellent book for artistically challenged me.
It’s not just you! I prefer more stylized/abstract covers as real people never look the way I imagine they do based on the descriptions in the book. It’s also distracting when the different covers in a series use different (in all senses of the word) models. Give me a stylized stick figure, at least it won’t change from book to book!
On a different note, as long as I am ranting, why must all female action characters have ginormous bustlines?? Those big bad girls are nothing but trouble if one is trying to do anything other than nap in the sunshine.
Ok, no more Thursday ranting…
I prefer stylized covers over actual human faces too! 80% because of the imagination vs model thing, 20% because actual human eyes (especially when I know they belong to a real person) creep me out if they are staring at me from a bookshelf or such. I never enjoyed having posters of bands/celebs etc in my room as a kid. Drawn over real. Always. I think it’s why I love anime, cartoons for adults and caricatures a wholllllleeee lot.
Amber Husk says
I personally do not like real people or any thing really on a cover, I would be happy with just a blank color back round with the title and authors name.
my first reason for this is that it is a little weird going in to the bath room with a book and having some one face stare at you while trying to do your business. ( we all have read in the bathroom)
the other reason is for privacy, i have had a couple of bad expecses where people judge and harass me based on what was on the cover of the book i was reading.
and lastly i agree with Morag, that a real photo or picture can mess with how you proceive the charaters in the book , some times for the worse.
Sorry you were harrassed about what you were reading, you stick to what you like!
I used to feel guilty about my reading choices – not liking the classics, thinking modern novels are all about miserable blokes or equally miserable women etc – I read to be entertained, and while obviously a book has to have dramatic tension to be really good it is possible to have dramatic tension without the WHOLE book being depressing, as HA demonstrate so well.
Moderator R says
No one should be shamed for reading a book!
Cynthia R says
Yes, we do all read in the bathroom and I am glad you pointed that out. 😁
My parents took it a step further than most people and put a book case filled with books in their bathroom which I saw when I came home on leave from the Air Force. I could not stop laughing! 😂
We had bookcases in every room when I was a kid, bathroom included. Guests remarked that it was the first time they’d seen bookcases in that room. I don’t have dedicated bookcases in the bathrooms now but what non-porcelain bathroom furniture I do have definitely has books on it.
I have read the hating game and it was cute and very funny. An excellent beach read.
I’ve read and enjoyed The Kiss Quotient. I read a second book in the same series by Helen Hoang and didn’t enjoy it as much. Since Kiss Quotient is a standalone HEA this book is still a nice summer read.
The third book in the series (“Heart Principle”) is soooo sad. From the cover it looks cute and sweet, but the main character went through so much and was so misunderstood I was crying at times. Perhaps her most complex and well written yet, but not at all what I was expecting.
This one really resonated with me as well. Thought it was the best of the three.
Helen Hoang is an absolute must-buy for me. These have been described as “Asperger romances” which is kind of a dated term but one of the principal characters in each book is neurodivergent (as is the author). Although they share characters, each book is a standalone HEA. It’s true that The Heart Principle is more intense than the others; the author was going through some stuff during the writing of it. All three are comfort reads for me though.
I enjoyed the Kiss Quotient. One of my book clubs choose it. I wouldnt have picked it up on my own. But it was a good read though.
Oh my. So much Teal
Are these books only ebooks? Could that be why they get such a generic treatment? Do books that get physically published get a more complicated treatment for the cover?
Moderator R says
They all have physical format too (even hardback in some cases, such as The Kiss Quotient).
Perhaps a reaction to those who want to arrange books by color instead of author?
I may have missed the “Ask A Question” moment but I am wondering. Why is Nevada’s son named Arthur (if he is) instead of James, after her dad???
I thought since she thought of him so highly, she would have named her son that. And I don’t recall an ‘Arthur’ otherwise mentioned in the books.
Because Connor and Nevada liked that name. There is no requirement that one must be named after one’s relatives. 🙂
Funny. Our requirement was that the kids NOT be named after relatives! 😉
The kiss quotient was good, I love the hating game! The movie actually did justice to the book too, which is rare!
That’s good to know. I liked the book a lot and so was afraid to watch the movie.
Agreed! The Hating Game movie was a wonderful adaptation. If anyone seeing this has read the book but not seen the movie, then go see the movie.
I read and enjoyed The Kiss Quotient, as it was recommended to me by a friend. Then read another by that author, enjoyed it, too, but not as much as The Kiss Quotient. Read both by borrowing them from the library.
Catherine T says
I read the Kiss Quotient and it was excellent.
Loved the Hating Game! Also quite enjoyed the film adaptation.
Liv W says
I’ve read The Kiss Quotient and The Hating Game, and enjoyed both.
I’ve read The Hating Game and The Kiss Quotient and enjoyed both.
I had a brief moment of panic when I saw the heading. The most recent election in Australia was greatly influenced by candidates referred to as ‘Teals’. But it’s alright, the blog is still a politics free zone. Big sigh of relief. Thank you House Andrews.
I buy romance novels for a library and I can verify the trend of making novels look like other popular novels in the hopes of drawing readers eye. The bright cover with the line type/graphic drawing are especially popular right now. I am most relieved we seem to be done with the dating app trope books!
I have read three of the four (Kiss Quotient, Hating Game and Hook Line and Sinker) and enjoyed them all. They are all contemporary romances but Kiss Quotient deals with neurodiverse characters in a believable and sensitive way. I loved and read/bought the entire series. Hating and Hook are what I would call fun, humorous, modern romances. All are worth a read and very popular at my library.
And now I shall go investigate Alina Baker!
Moderator R says
Thank you for the librarian perspective! 🙂
I remember when Twilight came out and suddenly every book had stark contrasts of black backgrounds and white white objects with a pop of red.
YASSS! I was thinking that too…that a popular book can trigger a whole slew of copycat covers throughout a genre.
I read “The Kiss Quotient” by Helen Hoang and quite enjoyed it! There are others in the series and some were quite good and some were good.
Meant to add that part of the appeal is that the main characters are all neurodiverse in one way or another, which was fascinating. My fave was #2 in the series.
Loved and actually reread The Hating Game. Reading The Kiss Quotient now- not loving it as much but it is well-written ( I am hit or miss on contemporary romance – too angsty).
We did a display at our library of books that matched our brand colors one of which is teal. There are so many books with this color cover! It was by far the easiest one to put together and we pulled across genres.
Anyway have read The Kiss Quotient, which is a favorite and a book I’ve given to new romance readers for it’s diversity and inclusion. Neurodivergent heroine who hires a male escort to help her get used to the physical side of relationships.
The Hating Game is another super popular book that got a movie adaptation. Enemies to lovers, first person, rival office mates romance.
Both are super popular in my bookclub as well.
Richard Cartwright says
I honestly thought this was just the publishers cheaping out on the covers.
The Kiss Quotient was a very good romance read. The book has a neurodiverse protagonist and I think she did a really good job with their story.
I found the hating game a very enjoyable read. And I’m not typically a fan of enemies-to-lovers romances. It was entertaining.
The movie they made on it was entertaining too
Lynn L says
I enjoyed THE KISS QUOTIENT as well. Well written and an interesting take on romance.
Read The Hating Game and really enjoyed it. Heard it was being made into a movie.
It is! The movie is on Hulu!
I thought it was pretty well adapted. I read the audio book then saw the movie and they try to be pretty true to the novel.
Susan D says
I have not read any of the books listed. I know we are not supposed to judge a book by its cover. But I can’t help thinking that books with such plain covers are going to be of lesser quality.
Moderator R says
The style of cover more or less covers a whole genre so there will be a spectrum of quality, as in all genres. It’s all up to personal taste 😊
Marcia B-C says
As a long-time romance reader, with a group of long-time romance reader friends, we have a long-time practice of laughing about trends in romance book covers. We call the current trend “comic book covers,” and believe they are targeted at readers younger than we are. There were the headless, or partially headless, hero covers, the running couple covers (usually for romantic suspense books), the couple that didn’t look like either the hero or heroine described in the book covers, the ones with dogs (whether there was a dog or not in the story), etc. We do notice the trends, the cost cutting (cover models used to appear at reader cons), and tell our own jokes about the book selling business.
Marcia B-C says
I forgot the high heels and/or fruit covers for contemporary romances in the 90s and early 2000s. One author’s fandom called themselves “The Cherries” due to this trend.
I remember all of these trends and have had a similar reaction to the current one referenced above – marketing to a younger audience!
Thats hilarious. I noticed a lot of the “new” historical romance covers all look the same too, they’re trying to get away from the bodice ripper “I AM SEXY HISTORICAL MAN” covers xD
Moderator R says
I love HISTORICAL SEXY MAN! 😂
Donna A says
Don’t forget barechested kilted dude! We must not lose him!
Every hero in the 80s was Fabio.
Cannot tell you how many Fabio covers are still sitting on my bookshelves!
When I was in the book industry (late 80s, early 90s), I saw Fabio in person at an event. Not the same.
I have read 3 of the 4 (not the 2nd), and I liked all 3.
Hating Game was maybe the most predictable; I liked one of the other books in the Hook, Line, and Sinker better; and I enjoyed Kiss Quotient because it was so funny and different (I am beginning to view a lot of the autism scale romances as derivative in the more negative senses).
As for the teal, wasn’t that the hot color of the 1991 Geo Storm?
I read the comments on HISTORICAL SEXY MAN and barechested kilted dude and immediately thought of Roman in a Kilt! I looked up Russian kilts and discovered there is a Russian Scottish tartan pattern. Sometimes I just form odd mental connections. Must be because it’s almost midnight.
Moderator R says
Thinking about bare chested Roman at night is a worthy pursuit 😁
LOL, or at any other time.
Well, *almost* any other time. There must always be exceptions.
Personally listened to both The Hating Game and The Kiss Quotient and loved them both.
I was cursed for decades with a mindnumbingly boring job. My only daily escape was audio books. I have listened to those same two and agree with you.
Andy Lawler says
How important our covers in these days of ebooks? I can’t remember the last time I made a decision based on cover.
Moderator R says
I used to think the same but have learned people are still very passionate about what they like cover-wise!
I’m in the Kobo Reddit and there was one person who was in pain because the Kobo ebook would supplant his favored covers imported from Calibre. They were quite upset not to have their preferred covers showing. In guess it’s mostly personal preference because I barely look at covers on ebooks.
House DeMille says
Good covers are even more important for ebooks. I read exclusively ebooks now and I certainly judge all books by their covers. When you’re on the Kindle Store, it’s basically a host of covers – it’s the first line of decision making.
Gaylin Chev says
I have read The Hating Game, The Kiss Quotient and Hook, Line & Sinker and enjoyed them all.
I pretty much ignore covers these days. I look for author’s books by their name and read the blurb. Or with Ilona Andrews books, just pre-order and wait impatiently. 😉
Tasha A says
Key word is “Impatiently”. I turn into my 2 year old when a House Andrews books is going to be published!
Jessa N says
I’ve read the Hating Game, The Kiss Quotient and Hook, Line, and Sinker and recommend them all! All different, but all great. I’d recommend all three authors!
Proud Bookworm says
I read “The Kiss Quotient” and enjoyed it. One of the characters (and the author) is on the Spectrum. Having the thought process of a character who is not neurotypical was new to me and I enjoyed the different perspective.
I’ve read two of these books. The Hating Game is pretty ok if you like enemies to lovers but Helen Hoang’s series starting with the Kiss Quotient is very good. Her characters are neurodivergent and have a lot to work through, which can make them a tad…angsty is maybe not the right word as their concerns are very real but I can’t think of another adjective. If you don’t mind that, I would highly recommend.
I can’t handle angsty *at all* as a rule, and regularly DNF books that go too far down that road. It doesn’t bother me with her books because the thought processes make sense in the way she writes them. Her characters never seem TSTL.
I’ve read The Kiss Quotient (the whole series actually) and really enjoyed it!
I have read and really enjoyed The Kiss Quotient. Read Helen Hoang’s series out of order, the colour of the cover had no bearing on reading the book just her writing and topics. Would recommend. Further I have read Hook Line and Sinker more b/c it was available through my library in audio and looked fun. I did read the other in that series b/c I like to complete things. Well written and just a fun read. The covers w/o models is actually a draw for me. Someone else mentioned that a real model adjusts the description in the book and skews one’s interpretation a bit. I have to say Teal is not an attractive colour to me, to wear or see, not drawn to it at all.
Carina Paredes says
I have only read The Kiss Quotient and it was really good and worth a read if you like romance.
Interesting to see Nalini Singh cover quote on Kiss Quotient. I don’t usually branch out into the regular world as a setting anymore but with that and so many good comments here I’m curious to try a sample.
Yellow and teal! My living room or bedroom? Ha ha. I’m decorating working with a mint green and pink/teal/light blue, maroon and yellow rug (blended tastefully in the pattern) a not quite 60s avocado green sofa, and wooden tables… pink sofa cushions… hum hum. And yes alot of teal, pinks, blushes and yellows. Sigh. Florida at its best. At least the walls are no longer soft celadon green (all the rage now and making a comeback, ha ha). I painted those white.
This is fascinating!
I have read the kiss quotient and hating game.
Highly rec the kiss quotient.
The Hating Game was well written and fun. I really enjoyed it.
I absolutely loved The Kiss Quotient and The Hating Game was adorable.
Tracey Gleason says
The Hating Game is hilarious- one of my favorite rom coms. Highly recommend!
Aly Anz says
I enjoyed The Hating Game!! Haven’t read the rest. I struggle to pick up books by new authors and end up mostly re-reading House Andrews books 🙂
Question – do authors mostly keep control over book titles?
Moderator R says
Ehhhh, so so. It probably depends a lot from case to case 🙂.
Kira Hagen says
Cover design is THE WORST. People who do it professionally, hats off to you and I understand completely why designers take these simplification shortcuts because the whole process is terrible. I say this having just self-published a novel I wrote during lockdown and having done my own cover. Started with, “What font says dystopian military but also faery? (fyi, it doesn’t exist)” and things went downhill from there. Finding a working design the FB amateur cover designers group didn’t rip to shreds was AWFUL. And slow. Very, very slow. I think the final version was named something like “10cfinalfinalsuperfinalyesreally.psd” and that was 10c on redesign number 5 or 6… and I worked on that one for I think seven months. And I’m a photographer, I thought, “Oh, I know photoshop, this will be a piece of cake!” No. No, it is not. Clear graphic design that communicates genre and tone and lets readers know what they’re getting? That is a completely different skill set from photo editing. I ended up with something that people said, Oh, I’d read the blurb on that… but it doesn’t show much of what a genre bender the book is, one reviewer said anything with an animal on the cover is going to be considered a kids book, and overall it looks way more fantasy than it really should. It’s my best take, but I know it has huge issues and I wish I could have just handed the whole process to someone who knows what they’re doing.
But, no money, and I’d hit my eff it all point by then. I wrote the thing to deal with lockdown, lost all my work and income during it, and looked at my depression and knew I couldn’t cope with the rejection gamut of trad publishing… so congrats to anyone having their covers done for them, because just the design process and never mind writing the !#$#@ blurb is miserable and also a huge skill set in its own right, which has almost no overlap with anything else. Kudos the people who are good at it, even if they’re copying each other a bit too much!
Kira, it is a gorgeous cover. But you need to ditch the tree behind the elk and stick a rusted skyscraper in there instead. 🙂
This is good advice — and from someone who is successful in the field!
Kira Hagen says
Arghhh I thought checked the notifications thing, and then my favorite author replies to me and I don’t even see it! ::faints in fangirl::
That’s a good idea. Might use it for book 2. Right now my plan is to do otherworldly white animals with green eyes on all the covers, and book two will have an excessively Minnesotan werewolf pack in it so it might show a werewolf in a cone of shame. Well, there’d be one pretty/ spooky wolf in the center, then another in a cone in the background. Possibly a second with a toy duck (his grandfather trained him as a hunting dog when he was little).
There are actually are a bunch of ruined buildings and power plants in the background of “Strangeling”‘s cover, but I *may* have gotten a bit heavy-handed when I sent the picture into the “make everything glow” plugin… The thing is, everything in the picture is 3D models except the deer, which I had to hand illustrate because Megaloceros deer have been extinct for 8,000 years. Then I had to make everything else look hand-illustrated too…
Here’s the paperback illustration without the text, you can see the tank and ruins and stuff better. The Tree that Grows Between Worlds is a major story element and sort of the fantasy-scifi bridge of the story, as the sidhe are human-based symbiotes of it that diverged after the Younger Dryas Impact, towards the end of the Ice Age. They use the Tree as the source of their magic and as a 5th dimensional transit network; it uses them like Amazonian zombie ants, and their return to Earth sort of broke open the local time-space continuum and let all sorts of things loose. So it felt important to have on the cover, for what that’s worth. But book 2, ruins covered in vines with a sort of tree shape to it, I think I’ll do that. Thanks.
Tasha A says
Now I have to go check out your book and your cover!! 🙂
Linzi Day says
Oh Kira, I FEEL your pain somewhere in my belly. Just reading this took me back!
I did almost exactly the same (Lockdown, first book weird genre etc) except that I gave up at 6g_effthis.psd when I realised I would need a paperback cover too. I handed it off to a cover designer who specialised in PWF .
And then the pain of failing to write the blurb started …. aargh!
I can highly recommend The Hating Game and also enjoyed The Kiss Quotient.
I’ll be honest, those type of covers never ever entice me to pick up the book and look at it.
I have a confession. My first experience with HA was Kate Daniel’s book #4. I was at the library perusing fantasy and actually skipped over the book based on the cover. I was like “you girl with sword, me your lion fated mate”. It fell off the shelf and hit me in the head and the rest is history. I refer to it as a comic slap on the back of the head for judging a book by its cover. Now I always read the synopsis.
Moderator R says
Sometimes Fate has to use the good throwing arm 😂
Very grateful House Andrews don’t do the Fated Mate trope!
Me too! Although I don’t count Derek’s vision. I”m totally on board with the theory that its HEA with Julie.
I have read, and absolutely loved, both the Hating Game and the Kids Quotient . Now I feel like I need to read the other two listed. 😂
Kiss Quotient, not Kids!
I hate this trend of cartoon covers. They must cost less to produce. Remember the trend of primary colored historical covers with girl in big dress? I hated those too.
It could be worse . They all have heads not just torsos only. The faces could use some work. They are also not orange or yellow. I think the color choices come in waves like furniture. +1 the Kiss Quotient.
Michelle M says
I read the Kiss Quotient and really liked it. The female protagonist has Asperger’s and I appreciated how the author handled that aspect of the story. Then I found out the author has autism and when I read some of her interviews I was impressed. This was her debut novel and it is lots of fun.
Stacy Koster says
I have read, and really by enjoyed, the Kiss Quotient (I love all three of Helen Hoang’s books) and Hook, Line, and Sinker.
I haven’t read either The Hating Game or The Kiss Quotient, but based on BDH enthusiasm they’re now on my reading list.
The first Ilona Andrews book I read was Magic Burns.
I bought it based on the cover.
I liked that the woman in the picture looked fit enough to wield her sword and it was cool that she was actually wearing clothes that would help her survive combat. I admit that I also had a burning curiousity about the lion. Little did I know that IA would become a gateway book for my unbridled Urban Fantacy addiction. Now, when I’m inbetween re-reading Ilona Andrews books, I look for new books with the same moody cover art.
I never thought I would say this but I miss Fabio on the cover of romance novels. I find the current crop of generic covers unappealing. No disrespect to the authors but I group these in the same category as Harlequin romances where you can interchange the covers and they all fit
Ooooooh The Hating Game by Sally Thorne… Is steamy and fun, i really enjoy it, but i found it With a different cover
The covers were how I used to identify urban fantasy books when they were really popular. I’d look for a drawing of a woman turned away from the reader, probably wearing leather with one arm obscured.
Yes! I immediately thought of the Kim Harrison books and all of the Rachel Morgan knock-offs.
SO much teal!
I have to say that my first thought was “Supporting the fight against ovarian cancer. Yay!. Oh, not. Too bad.”
I also have to say that I probably would not bother with any of these titles if I saw them on Amazon’s list or in a book store. For some reason, I get “Cheap, probably unedited, doubt I’d care for the plot.” out of the appearance of the books.
I am obviously wrong, given the glowing reviews by the BDH.
Sorry, I am still unlikely to pay for them. Since I am not in the likely focus group (being 73), I will not worry that I am terminally uncool.
F Burke says
I read the kiss quotient and liked it a lot she’s written two other books about side characters from the original story and that’s kind of fun also. Enjoyed all three of them and it was fun getting there HEA for everyone even though the stories were all different. (Helen hoang)
I wonder if the trend away from models on book covers coincided with covid and the challenges of coordinating in person shoots?
Nah, this trend didn’t start in the Covid Abyss. Even before the animated characters were added, covers were starting to travel in that direction by becoming more font-focused.
I know nothing about the books, authors, etc. What I do know is teal is a color I really dislike. It hits something viscerally repellent in me. The books look to have a certain cheesiness to me, and when I see books like this in a store or online, I tend to skip right over them. Not really sure why, it just is. Add a little more green to it and I find it nauseous.
Beats the heckers outta me. There are other issues I have that mean more and take more time. So- I accept it and move on.
Elaine Scamordella says
The Kiss Quotient is a great romance novel. It’s really well written in my opinion and the conflict is a different from the usual by the numbers plot.
Those covers remind me of the intro for Bewitched.
I’ve been burned both ways by cover art. I’ve been seduced by covers that are so beautiful I’d think the book inside HAS to be good, only to find myself struggling to even finish them. On the flip side, if I hadn’t had a solid recommendation, I’d have missed out on my most favorite story of all time, because the cover was so lame. It’s a crapshoot.
Megan H says
Tessa Bailey is a light, fun read. The kind of book that is great to take to the beach or read before bed. I have The Kiss Quotient in my TBR pile but it hasn’t made it to the top yet. I very rarely choose a book by the cover but they do sometimes make me want to read a synopsis. None of these covers do that.
Jen B. Green says
Pretty much my favorite color. The Hating Game is one of my a break-glass-in-case-of-terrible-day contemporary books. I ordered a special collectors edition today, in fact. Signed, with sprayed edged and a pink cover. 🙂
I’ve read Hook, Line, and Sinker (Tessa Bailey is known for a lot of dirty talk, so if that’s your thing…) and The Kiss Quotient (has good ND rep). Both were solid.
I don’t know that I’d put these books into the same category, though – contemporary romance, yes. But the Hating Game and Hook, Line, and Sinker are more romcom, while the Kiss Quotient took itself more seriously.
And in theory, it would be nice if authors had more say in their covers. But a cover is basically a giant advertisement for the book and is probably best left up to the people who do that for a living inside of those who wrangle words into coherence.
The Kiss Quotient is phenomenal but I’m a huge Helen Hoang fan. Neurodiverse heroine, funny, quirky, truly cool hero. I like Tessa Bailey a lot but haven’t read that one yet.
ooh Michelle! You will enjoy it! Hannah and Fox are such great characters!
I’m not trying to be rude….but cover art is the first reason I would choose a book. Based on the cover, I read the blurb, then decide if I’ll read the book. This type of art would not draw me in, unless I was already familiar with, and liked the author.
I’ve read The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang and thoroughly enjoyed it. The cover didn’t attract me, the blurb did.
I have read three of the four books – The Hating Game (so good and funny!), The Kiss Quotient (good read and mc is on the spectrum), Hook, line and sinker (friends to lovers book I just listened too)
all great books in the Rom-Com category!
*just want to add that The Kiss Quotient does deal with some more serious issues so not a true rom-com *
I’ve read and loved three of them. I have not read the Alina Jacobs book.
It could be worse. I remember some covers which used the same model…from the same photo shoot…in the same pose.
Margaret K says
I’ve read 3 out of 4! I read The Hating Game, The Kiss Quotient, and Hook, Line, and Sinker. I really really liked all of them! I’m picky about contemporary rom-coms and these 3 hit the spot for me. In fact, I’ve read The Hating Game 2x because I loved it so much.
I read three of the books. Hook,Line and Sinker was the second of two books and there was a boat involved, at least indirectly. It was relatively entertaining. The Hating Game was better and the Netflix movie was reasonably entertaining. The Kiss Quotient was very interesting. Helen Hoang writes romances about neuroatypical people and I find them very engaging and refreshing. Helen Hoang’s last book, can’t remember the title, was about a girl who basically had given away all her power and was sad all the time. I didn’t like it, but people who saw me read it commented about how they related and how amazing the book was. I prefer my heroines to rip the heads off of people who attempt to oppress them, but whatevs.
I found all three books through articles recommending romances, so my assumption is that the publications are tight with the romance publishers. Many of the other books I’ve tried based on recommendations from similar articles have been terrible. It’s kind of outrageous that the same brand,monotonous themes are pushed by publishers who turn around and refuses to touch amazing books like the Innkeeper series. 🙄
100% authors have no say about covers. In an unrelated series I’m reading, the main character as depicted on the cover is enough unlike his description that the author has turned it into a running joke.
One of the authors I collect has changed the look of her book covers for her older series. They are now generic contemporary without a united theme to tie them together. I don’t like them because they are not instantly recognizable as that series. Someone felt they were dated so the reprint (?) covers were changed.
If I was looking for a new author to try I would look right past them because, to me, there is nothing eye catching or interesting about them.
I totally agree. The new covers look cheap and like they just couldn’t be bothered to try for excellence.
I built a neighbourhood library to see if anybody in the neighbourhood would use it and all four of these books have passed through it. The only book that hooked me in for the full read was “I hate, I bake and I don’t date” by Alina Jacobs. The story got me and I admit I ended up skipping over the sex scenes because the story was more interesting than the sex. The other three books, I ended up putting back into the library the next day. Other people in the neighbourhood obviously like them because they were gone when I went out again to add some children’s books into circulation.
Ray G says
I really enjoyed the Kiss Qoutient and the hating game ( side note this one was actually made into a movie recently starring Lucy Hale).
Sometimes the covers do entice me to at least take a look at the book blurb as you know it’s probably going to be a nice, light, fun read which is all I need sometimes !
Hmm, reading the comments and then going back to check, I hadn’t even noticed one of the authors was called Tessa Bailey- realised it wasn’t the author I thought it was. But the generic treatments of the cover can also cause an issue that you miss an author you normally read of your skimming through a kindle shop etc. And don’t notice their name properly on a cover which is similar to another author who you don’t read/tried and didn’t like.
So while cover treatments being similar to a successful serise could draw in new readers, I guess it could also miss readers who are put off mistakenly of they aren’t paying attention properly and don’t notice the authors name.
Being a maths teacher I went straight for the kiss quotient. I can now happily recommend it.
I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Except for it being very predictable, I liked reading “hook line & sinker”.
I’ve read “The Hating Game”, and I got surprised since I didn’t expect it to be very good. I really, really like it, so much that I have re-read it a couple of times. I like the pace which is slower than in most other books of that genre, and the people are likeable and real. Recommend.
Cat Russell says
I’m not reading anything at all right now that isn’t fantasy of some sort. And new fantasy, urban fantasy or what have you, all gets the ‘spoiler treatment’ – I’ll skip to the last chapter to see who’s died. And no dystopian stuff, etc. Except for anything HA writes! (Although I don’t reread the Edge series ☹️ rn, as much as I love it)
Even if I was reading regular romance stuff, I think some of these books wouldn’t have appealed to me, but not because of their covers. I don’t buy physical books, and get ebooks or audiobooks. And those are from known authors or recommendations from those authors. And I still try to find a spoiler review if I think it will end sadly. Only The Kiss Quotient sounds like I might like it, but I think I’d have to find a spoiler review.
Sorry if the spoiler review thing or skipping ahead thing bothers anyone. Taking care of my mental health (which is greatly impacted by books) is just too important. HA, thank you so so so much for helping me through a truly hideous depression and the aftermath. Y’all and a few other authors have been great for that and I appreciate all of of you. ❤️
Moderator R says
I hope there are only brighter days ahead for you!
Of course mental health above all, do whatever it takes with spoilers! 🤗
Michele G says
I am so sorry. 😱I have not read any of those books. I just hate the colour combination with a passion. It turns me off the book immediately.
What does that say for marketing to me?
I now need to read one, to see if they are as cloying and insipid as the cover looks!
I’d recommend The Kiss Quotient. I liked it so much I searched down and read the other two books she’s written in that series.
Bill G says
GASP!!!!! SHOCK!!!!!! … slow recovery … you mean to say that authors DON’T have TOTAL CONTROL over their book once they sell it?
I did read hook line and sinker! It was pretty good, and I think I liked it better than the first one (but that’s mostly just because I relate with this sister more than the other one)
#personallyattacked this is my favorite colour, I would definitely stop at all these books on a display 😂😂😂
I very much enjoyed The Hating Game and The Kiss Quotient. Both were smart, funny, and engaging. Of course, I only read them as a palate cleanser between House Andrews books.
Tasha A says
I LOVE!!!!!! The Hating Game. It is a great read and the slow burn romance is the best of the best!!! A+ and HIGHLY recommend!!
I haven’t read the others but hoping other members of the BDH will recommend them and i will check them out!
Also the covers make me laugh! Since i read all my books on kindle I rarely consciencely pay attention to the book covers. But i have noticed this teal trend. Feels like publishers were just lazy.
Amateur Hermit says
Helen Hoang’s novels are all fabulous. Loved The Kiss Quotient so much that I have read everything in the series. Tessa Bailey is very good as well. I thoroughly enjoyed Hook, Line, and Sinker. Who knew that teal was trending as a romcom cover. It just goes to show that you should never judge a book by its cover. 😀
I’ve read The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang. It’s a very good read. So good I also read the other books in the series.
And sometimes the cover will snag my attention but if the blurb on the back doesn’t catch me I’m moving on to something else.
I prefer these drawn covers to the old-school clinch covers. It’s kind of fun to see the evolution older book covers go through to try and grab new readers.
I’ve read 3 of the 4 books here (same as most) and appreciate self-published Alina Jacobs marketing her book in a way that might attract the same readers.
Tessa Bailey is the author I like best of these but I preferred the 1st sister’s book to this one. The Hating Game reminded me too much of a an older favorite romance but it was fun.
I love Helen Hoang, she writes neurodivergent characters so wonderfully and that and her personal voice makes the Kiss Quotient quite a different book from the others featured.
Yes I take the genre point but … it’s a shame she got shoe-horned into this by her publisher
I really liked “The Hating Game” and “The Kiss Quotient”.
The Hating Game is AMAZING
If Teal is the in colour – Ruby Fever should definitely stand out!
(Or maybe they’re following the Emerald of Emerald Blaze, and next year they’ll all be in shades of Ruby?)
Is the use of similar styles/designs just the modern version of reusing artwork – as they used to do ca. 1930-1960 on children’s books? Thinking Nina K Brisley et al. who would draw a frontispiece for one book/dustjacket for one book, and then it’d be reused entirely for another book a few years later – just with a new title & author.
Read everything but the Jacobs book. Enjoyed all 3. Purchased for my kindle based on the author, book synopsis, and/or recommendations. Cover style didn’t factor into any purchase.
Nicole Ramos says
The hating game is one of my favorites and they did a decent job on the movie
I’ve read both The Hating Game and the Kiss Quotient and enjoyed both quite a bit.
I used to work in a bookstore for several years and I can verify this has been going on for years (at one point I even considered making an Instagram just to post “book cover twins” for fun). What seems to happen is a book comes out and is a massive success and becomes well known in the genre (for this collection, The Hating Game), then all the publishers in that genre try to capitalize on this success by using similar cover designs to remind you of the previous book in the genre that was a hit.
Another good example is a couple of years ago we had tons of historical fiction esque books that were dark blue with gold gilt on the covers because of All The Light We Cannot See and The Nightingale. You had a ton of storm colored (dark blues, greens, browns, and greys) window/water covers with the same large all caps fonts in mystery books marketed to women after The Girl On The Train. Really close in timeline so there might be another source but Madeleine Albright’s Fascism and then John Carreyrou’s Bad Blood. I could go on for ages!
Sharon Leahy says
Authors are artists with words, and their artwork, the books, should be treated as artworks, and given a cover that honors the effort the authors put into their art. The Innkeeper and Hidden Legacy covers are exquisite, multi-genre artworks on exquisite complex, interwoven novels with beautifully executed artwork covers. In perfect contrast, the four books you’ve picked as examples have covers drawn in a style that I’d expect from high school student, and given that “draw it in an hour and it’s done” type of artwork, I’d expect the stories to be trite, vapid, sickeningly saccarine and filled with cookie cutter insipidities.
Moderator R says
Given the rave reviews the BDH have give so far, it’s likely the the old adage is true and we shouldn’t judge the contents by the cover 🙂
Well, we know they’re all about 20-30 something Anglos in a first world setting.
Michael Phan in the Kiss Quotient is Vietnamese. 🙂 According to multiple reviews from the readers here it is an excellent book.
All three of her books have characters from an extended Vietnamese family. The author is of Vietnamese descent and some of the scenes are really fun.
I have not read any of those books….and I probably won’t. Teal makes my skin itch. I’m a “judge the book by the cover” kinda girl, I’ll admit it. But I’m looking for a story, and I believe the story starts with the title and the picture on the cover. I go back and look at covers while I’m reading when I’m thinking about the characters or the plot.
I just went back and looked more closely at the teal. If I can get past the itch, the pictures aren’t so bad. And it helps me think about what the story might be…might check out the Kiss Quotient…’cause I’m a geek. 🙂
I’ve read The Hating Game, The Kiss Quotient (One of my favorite romances! It features a heroine with autism), Hook, Line, and Sinker and love them.
I will say that The Hating Game and Kiss Quotient kind of blew up on the contemporary romance scene when they were published, and I strongly believe their popularity is what led to the trend of publishers marketing with illustrated covers, for better or worse. (I like them
It’s been said, but I’ll chime in: The Kiss Quotient is a fun read!
I love these covers & the other non-teal, yet still stylistically connected, covers of books similar in plot & feel (Book Lovers, Adult Assembly Required, One to Watch, etc.). Maybe that’ll change in a year or two–this style seems like it might get outdated quickly–but for now, the bright colors & fun fonts are a happy spot in my life, not too serious & especially welcome given pandemic-coated real life & other news events. The style is definitive, catches your eye & communicates a lot of info quickly–IRL and electronically online/in app–when you’re browsing.
I like the different book series that I own to each have a distinctive look (though sometimes I end up buying some books in a series in the US and some in the UK version because internet). I would hate having books by very different authors look almost the same, it would make it so much harder to find a book I want to re-read
Lauren T says
To be fair these titles are published YEARS apart. The Hating Game came out in 2016, The Kiss Quotient (2018) and Hook, Line & Sinker came out this year. They do look similar but they aren’t contemporaries!
Also I’ve read three of them and they are all great!
Moderator R says
The point was more that they are indicative of a trend in marketing and publishing, which of course affects quite a few years 🙂
Ann Reader says
Helen Hoang scratches a very specific dirty talk itch while making me cry in books. No opinions on anything else.
I loved the hating game. They even made a movie out of it.
The ‘colour attracting people to a certain genre’ is something I noticed way back in the 70’s- back then it was red. Most chick-lit books had bright or deep red covers, then about 20 years later it was jewel tones( a lot of blue and gold) and the images were made from dramatic photos. The bosom-ripper genre. Now, with the cartoon images they are using teal. It could be that the cartoons don’t show as well on other colours but they have us trained. We see that teal cover and know that this is a book with an HEA.
Poor writers those covers are a massive turnoff for me. And I like romance among all the other genres. I used to read 5 or 6 harlequins a week back when books were cheap and the used book store close by and cheaper
Claudine Schneider says
I read the last two books and enjoyed them. Thank you public library!
I read all books except for “I hate I bake…”, and “The Hating Game” is one of my favorite romantic comedies.
I’ve read all 4, enjoyed Tye Kiss Quotient and The Hating Game the most. The Hating Game is a movie now but book is better.
The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang was unique and quite good.
Janie McGaugh says
I’ve read The Kiss Quotient (excellent) and Hook, Line, and Sinker (very good). I read them because they were audiobooks available from my library. I have The Hating Game reserved.
When I first saw this style of book covers (elsewhere), I kept thinking I’d already looked at that individual title before and pass it over. It took multiple encounters before I realized it wasn’t even the same author. (Most of my reading is in other genres so I only occasionally read rom-coms or pure romance.)
Because you asked so nicely, I’ve read The Hating Game and really enjoyed it. I’d recommend it.
Wow. That was not even a little bit subtle. I mean I remember from a long ago college class exactly why they’re doing it. But that just seems particularly blatant. Lol
Patty Gouthro says
I read Hook Line Snd Sinker and it was a wonderful read. Funny, relatable and fun to read
I read and listened to the audiobook for The Hating Game. I initially picked it because the cover was cheesy. (Brain goes to typical romantic comedy). After reading the premise, decided it would work as a book I could listen to while I worked that wouldn’t be distracting. While it started slow, I really got into it. It was surprisingly very good, I laughed…I cried.Afterwards, I also read it on my kindle to make sure I didn’t miss anything good. 😁
i’m totally a judge a book by its cover kind of gal. to me these book covers scream cheap and lazy. as if the publisher couldn’t be bothered to spend the time or money on a proper cover. and if they cheaped out on the cover, they must feel the book isn’t worth the effort.
but also, if i cant get some idea of what the book is about from looking at the cover, i don’t pick it up to read the blurb. i pass right on by. those book covers all look the same to me. nothing gives a clue to their contents. and nothing snags my interest. to be fair though, i don’t read contemporary romance.
I’ve read two of these books and liked them. The cover color choice was only relevant to the story in The Hating Game, though. Overall I don’t like these cartoonish covers but in romance you find mostly this or abs and face in shaded lighting.
I’ve noticed this exact same cover color scheme (I even have one or two of those books) in my Kindle app. I love the colors, but it does become kind of annoying to see the exact same styles and color schemes (pink/white/yellow is another) representing certain genres. I’d love to see a blog where they compare covers. I know I’ve seen some criticizing older romance covers, and they are hilarious. I think it’d be great to see more genre by cover quizzes!
The Kiss Quotient and the Hating game are both really cute romances with good banter. They are believable romances that have relatable characters. They are a bit cheesy, but i like that when I’m in that kind of mood. I haven’t read the other two.
Work in a bookstore. Get what you mean. One of these books are not like the others. It is on a list that I won’t type. Others are doing exactly as u stated and trying to catch the wave. Maybe..never know with surfers. 15 year bookseller.
Heh… yes, I remember the days of photoshopping shirts onto our broke af billionaire Rogan. Hello Kitty was the best (^^,)
I’ve done multiple re-reads of The Hating Game and The Kiss Quotient. The Kiss Quotient is one of my favorite books of all time. It’s a a boundary breaker. I’ve given it away as gifts. Can’t say enough good things about that book
I actually read all 4 of them. They are winners.
The Hating Game was insanely popular, so I wouldn’t be surprised if its success was the driving force behind the decisions. 🙂
This particular trend of covers is still all the rage in the publishing, very recognizable for the genre.
Lex Keating says
Surprisingly, I enjoyed The Kiss Quotient. Enough to track down the sequel. I like that the statistician figures out a formula that isolates and identifies love. These are the heroes we need more of….
The Kiss Quotient is the only one I’ve read and it is really fun and quirky. One of her main characters is neuro divergent and it’s a interesting view into the thought process.
Is it possible they are all copying “The Hating Game”? A truly good read and quite funny.
So to really confuse people I should use this style the (big letters) Learning to Hate (little letters) Perl in 7 days.
I love the Hating Game. The Kiss. Quotient was good too.
I like when series I enjoy have a distinct style making it easy to find more. In SFF, I’m thinking of Mercedes Lackey’s Valdemar books. Each book cover in each trilogy was obviously closely aligned with the others in the same trilogy and related to the other trilogies. In historical romance, Courtney Milan’s covers have the female character in a wonderful dress against a period appropriate background. She’s not the only one who did that though so it may have been a genre or publisher reaction to dropping the hero clutching the heroine to his (often bare) chest style that came before.