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Group Collaboration | Should We Judge Books By Their Covers?

book covers

This month we're talking book covers and we asked you to send us your opinions on all things covers - Do they affect your book-buying decisions?, How do you feel about movie covers or cover changes halfway through a series?, How important is the cover design in the marketing of a book?
Here are the results...
'As much as I try to be unbiased with book covers, I'm like a magpie. If a book has a pretty/interesting/shiny cover I'm instantly drawn to it. A cover provides a first impression of the books and some of my favourite book covers are definitely some of my favourite books!' – Ria

'Should we judge a book by their covers...? No. However I do - all the time! I wonder around book shops to see what catches my eye and obviously what catches my eye is usually the most interesting, brightly coloured or unique covered book. Then my mind immediately think 'I'll read it... it must be good... it has a good cover.' But what annoys me more than anything is 'movie covers' I have a huge distaste for them - why do I want to see the actor? I'm reading the book not watching the movie!' – Laura

'I am one of those people who have judged books by their covers in the past. With books like Wither, The Book Thief, Noughts and Crosses etc, I just couldn't resist picking them up and buying them on the spot based on their covers. And I wasn't disappointed because the actual stories were incredible. Now it's the complete opposite as I'll just read anything regardless of the cover! When it comes to buying particular editions of books, I really avoid buying the movie versions. For example I really want to buy Cloud Atlas but all I can find is the movie edition! At the moment, I'm collecting Penguin English Library books because the covers are just gorgeous!!!' – Lucy

'I usually don't choose a book by it covers. I buy most of my books online (it's pretty hard to find the books I want to read in English here in Sweden) so I'm stuck with whatever edition they have and I usually don't care too much. The only time I might even think about the covers is at the library. Again, my library has a pretty limited amount of books in English so I can't usually find anything from my "to read list" so I just pick something with a nice cover (but I still have to check the books rating on Goodreads, I'm pretty obsessed with ratings). I usually don't like the covers from the movie editions, but like I said it's not a big deal for me. I'm happy with whatever edition in English that I can get my hands on! ' – Niina

'Book covers definitely influence my decision when choosing something to read. I'm such a sucker for an awesome cover. Most of the time I will pick up a book (or click on it) if the cover grabs my attention. If it doesn't, then I often don't even bother looking at it. Sad, I know. But I'm a very visual person; I like to be able to see everything and picture everything in my mind, so it's fantastic when a book has a cover that can help create the world in which I'm about to step into. When it comes to series, I do like to have all the same front covers, but at the same time, I don't care too much. For example, I bought Beautiful Creatures from Amazon, and the cheapest one was the one with the movie cover. I want to buy the next ones in the series, but I know that they won't be the same in style. It will annoy me for the first few weeks maybe, but then I'll get over it - it's the words on the inside, not the images on the front that create the story...and that's why we read in the first place' – Anjali

'P.J. O'Rourke once said "Always read something that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it." I take this to be a point as much about looks as content. Stick some pages in leather binding or add a little gold-leafing, and you will always look good (plus not an obnoxious movie cover in sight)! ' – Laura

'Book covers can attract me if I know nothing about a book but are not the sole purpose of a purchase (well obviously); however, I get REALLY annoyed by cover changes!!!' – Lulu

Click here to watch a recent BBC video on how covers are designed

P.S Don't forget to leave us a comment letting us know your opinion on the subject!

Next month we're talking Favourite Protagonists and Main Characters & we want to hear your opinions...! For more information on how you can get involved drop us a quick email to

Post by Erin, Book Cover Images via Goodreads

1 comment

  1. ooh interesting! I have to say, whenever a book has photos from the film all over it, i just can't buy it. No idea why!

    Sophierosehearts x


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