While being stuck at my computer today because I’ve feasted too much to be able to get up, I discovered a cool new blog-hop and decided I had to share it, since it’s part of a week-long celebration of all things books and so there’s plenty of opportunities for you to join in, too. Today’s subject is the top ten book covers for books RELEASED in 2012, and for tomorrow’s open category I’m thinking I’ll list my top ten book blogs of the year, so feel free to drop by 
again. 


So here are my favorite designs. And since anyone self-publishing may have to consider creating or at least conceptualizing their own covers, I’ve let my inner graphic design student have a ponder at why they work (even if it means I sound like an arts-y loser). 🙂 

 I. Love. This. Not only because of the tension in the fate of the flower, but also the way the color gradient on the lettering makes the heat seem almost 3D – which just increases the tension even more. Plus, the jagged, red cracks int he background seem to me to indicate more conflict in the back-story.


Sometimes what you leave out of a design is even more important than what you put in. In this cover there’s nothing to connect the images and therefore they raise more questions than they answer, which makes me desperate to read on. 

We all know contrast is one of the strongest tools in a designer’s arsenal, which is why the success of the color contrast is obvious. But also check out the way the soft, flowing vines contrast with the spiky thorns to create a creepy, romantic theme of death. Sounds good to me.

Vintage typography is all the rage right now, so I couldn’t go past the lettering used for the main title. The way the subtitle then sneaks up out of the deep really emphasizes what the story is about, which makes me feel like I can already relate to the character.

I love the way the intricate border brings darkness to something traditionally considered quite light and family-friendly. Having the same effect when you see the sweet, innocent girl with that amusingly dark caption seals the deal for me.

Awesome contrast to make this stand out on a shelf, and beautiful layering of images like road signs and hidden crows. A lot of books have their subjects looking away from the reader, so I love that this one stares at you so you can’t look away.


Simple and therefore eye catching, and something that would stand out in a wall full of black-covered teen reads. Plus it’s fun yet a little bit sad, so it’s like a log-line in its own right.


Beautiful typography, eye-catching colors, and great lighting to illuminate the subjects. All these little hints say ‘these two characters stand out from the crowd, and that’s why you should be reading them.’


As I’ve mentioned, designers often say less is more, but the way the trees, vines and falling leaves crowd around the girl says something is going to come after her. Her hand hesitating at the point of opening the gate gives me all the tension I need. 


The bold colors on this are awesome – because no matter what size you view it, it still stands out (go ahead – view it as small as you can). Something to remember, considering that your book cover will often just be a thumbnail on a website. 
So there you have it. I hope these are useful – or at least as inspirational as they are for me! Don’t forget to check out my top 10 book blogs tomorrow (UPDATE: I realize what I intend to share are writing blogs rather than book blogs so I might sit out of the blog-hop tomorrow, but I’ll still try and post my short-list) – you never know what useful resources you could be missing out on. And thanks to Lisa from A Life Bound By Books, Jessica from Confessions of a Bookaholic, Jamie from Two Chicks on Books, Mindy from Magical Urban Fantasy Reads and Rachel from [Fikt]shun for hosting the hop – jump over to their blogs to join in!
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