Sunday, July 2, 2017

Don't Judge a Book By Its Cover...

People always say "don't judge a book by its cover". However, let's admit it, covers are a really important part of a customer's consideration when buying books. Skimming the shelves means that you won't read every single synopsis, but you will look at the title from the spine, and if interested, peek at the cover. Let me give an example of how a cover impacts a buyer's decisions. The following are Goodreads covers of the same book, Revolution Is Not A Dinner Party by Ying Chang Compestine. It's an AWESOME book about the Cultural Revoultion about China, and I definitely recommend it to any historical fiction fan. 

791602   6759451

Both of these covers are actually very beautiful. Each is attractive in its own way. Here are four categories that I've split basic cover factors into (color, etc.) that would persuade me into checking out the story. Let's see how this cover love plays out.

1. Color
Color is one of the most important things that draws me to a book. The bright red and black shine compared to the dullish cover of the paperback edition is far more attractive. However, the dull color does portray that the story is actually a sad, not joyous, one. In the end, I think I'd go with the hardback cover because I like bright covers.

2. Title and Text
Yes, they both have the same title, but in this category also comes the way the title is shown. The large, red, bold font in the paperback edition of the book stands out against the background, just like the white title stands out against the black for the hardcover one. However, I'll have to go with the paperback edition on this one, because the title and author are a bit crammed in the hardcover edition, and the green just doesn't really match the rest of the cover to me. 

3. The Central Image
Both of the girls are photographed to match the tone of the covers (a slight smile on the author for bright colors vs. a serious face on the cover's girl for diminished colors). I actually think the central image is not such a dominating factor in this case, just because each matches with the cover they're on. 

4. Layout
The layout of the hardback edition seems actually a bit unusual to me. Usually the title is on the top or in the middle, not the bottom of the book. The paperback layout is what I see more commonly, with a title on the side in front of the background. I like the layout of both books, but the hardback edition feels a bit empty at the top because there's no text near the image. I can say that the layout would not affect my decision in reading the synopsis though, because it's not super awkward on any of the covers.

So that's how I judge a book cover. Now, if the cover even interests me a little bit, let alone so much like this book, I usually look into it. I understand that even good covers have bad stories, and vice versa. That's why, don't judge a book by its cover, judge a book's cover by it's cover (if that makes sense)!

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