I’m coming right out of the PC closet with this one:
I do judge a book by its cover.
And if this makes me a bad, bad person then so be it. Face facts, 2010 has been a mighty disappointing year in so far as quality adult fiction covers is concerned. From the shortlisted Booker prizewinners (yawn) to the horrors regularly dished up on Large Print fiction, it has been tough for the visually inclined.
Honestly speaking, cover-wise, is it really too much to ask:
- that a cover match the content of the book and its title
- that the cover show a little creative flair and
- that said cover should be devoid of glittery raised lettering that can be read like braille?
It really was better in the past. Look back at some of the mouthwatering covers that we have feasted on over the years in Seven Hundred Penguins – and sigh.
I am not alone in this I know, and who better to give an incisive, bitingly intelligent slant on it than Lionel Shriver. When I interviewed her on her novel So Much For That, she was extremely vexed over the cover choices on offer to authors. And there is nothing better than Shriver vexed and on a roll. You can read her in full swing here. One of her pet peeves is the “pretty in pink” approach to women writers. As only Shriver can put it:
“trussing up my novels as sweet, girly and soft is like stuffing a rottweiler in a dress.”
And that I think is my literary quote of the year!
What, I wonder, were your quotes and covers of 2010?