Does the book cover define my book Aeron spy thriller? Does a person only choose to read a book if it has a cover that appeals in some way? Perhaps. Certainly that’s the sale pitch of companies that make money designing book covers. When I am looking for a book, the title and the cover do play an important part in deciding whether I will read the blurb on the back.
So what about my Aeron spy thriller? Where did that cover come from, and does it work?
I decided to design my own book cover. The decision was pretty simple; I just was not going to pay for anyone else to do it for me. The current book cover was based on a photograph I took inside the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne. The main entrance features a glass wall with water continuously running down the wall. I took a picture of it from a balcony just inside the gallery.
I honed in to just a tree and its reflection and the cover was born.
The concept was that in the book, as in life, all is not as it seems. It is not always possible to recognise an object, or what is going on, from how it appears. Conspiracy is a sub-theme of the book, so that seems as good a way of choosing the cover as any other.
Alternative Book Covers
At the time I had two. One I dismissed fairly quickly. It was part of a photo that was actually taken off the coast near Portland, Maine in the US. The idea I had was the main character Raynor really enjoyed surfing. I dismissed the cover for a number of reasons, not the least of which was that the wave in the photo was hardly an exciting break.
The second was an oblong split into two triangles, one black and one white. The symbolism here was that in any conspiracy or any spy thriller events are rarely black and white in the allegorical sense of crystal clear. There are often at least two points of view and frequently there is a second meaning to what is said. There are good guys and bad guys. What is good for a good guy is bad for the bad guy and vice a versa.
I did at least get some professional advice about the three covers I had designed from someone who had read the final version of the book. The Waves was dismissed immediately. The choice between Black and White and the Blurred Tree was harder. In the end the tree won.
Juliet, in discussing Romeo’s house and her love for Romeo was of the view:
that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell so sweet:
What do you think? Does a book work no matter what the cover looks like? Does the book cover mean a lot when you are considering a book? Would you be have been more interested in finding out about the Aeron spy thriller if I had gone with the black and white cover?