2014 Book Cover Trends ~ Ferris Wheels

2014 is almost in the history books but I have one more current cover trend to highlight before putting a lid on my 2014 book cover trends.  I’ve noticed that Ferris Wheels have become a mini trend.    Since I have a fear of falling, and have always avoided the dreaded Ferris Wheel with a passion,  I immediately noticed my nemesis appearing on several book covers.  It’s amazing how Ferris Wheels can depict either a charming tone or an ominous tone depending  how they are used by cover designers.  What do you think of this trend in background props?


dearth's Daughter

Carina Press ~ March, 2014

Fair Play

Howard Books ~ May, 2014


Katherine Tegen Books ~ July, 2014

At Blue Bonnet Lake

Revell ~ October, 2014


HMH Books – May, 2015



2014 Book Cover Trends – Ravens and Crows

We’ve all seen beautiful book covers,  featuring a cottage by the sea and graceful seagulls flying over head.   The birds are subtle touches but they seldom stand out.   This year,  I’ve noticed that ravens and crows  are  prominent on several alternate reality or thriller cover layouts.  They are a focal point and not just a background item.  Of course, I have examples.

The first cover is Visions, a contemporary thriller.  It uses crows to show unrest, mystery, and maybe even an ominous threat to those inside the house.


Dutton Adult – August, 2014

The second cover is from, Illusions of Fate.  It is a whimsical cover with the  birds flying from the side of a porcelain teacup into the air.  It’s charming and I’m curious why the heroine isn’t  startled when the teacup design comes to life.

Illusions of Fate

Harper Teen – September, 2014

The third example is, Winterspell.   I love how the bird is perched on the two “L”   letters in the title.   Based on the crow and the heroine holding that knife, something bad is going down.


Simon Schuster – September, 2014

Even self-published steampunk novels are using this trend.  The fourth example is, Storms of Lazarus.  Now granted,  the first thing you  notice is the gorgeous hero on the cover but look again,  there is a either a crow or a raven perched on his shoulder.

Storms of Lazarus

Self-published – July, 2014

The next example is disturbing but it fascinates me.  Take a look at Homecoming Homicides and the feathered friend getting up close and personal with either the heroine or an unfortunate victim.

Homecoming Homicides

Wild Rose Press – January, 2014

My final two covers are from the same Harlequin series and they are my, “What were they thinking?” covers.  I’m not sure if featuring giant ravens, looming over the hero and heroine, creates a good cover.  But then, maybe there are HUGE ravens in the  series.

Raven's Hollow

Harlequin Intrigue – January, 2014

Night Of The Raven

Harlequin Intrigue – November, 2014

What do you think of , Raven’s Hollow and Night of the Raven?    This isn’t a huge trend but it is an interesting mini trend.   Illusions of Fate and Winterspell are my favorites from the group.

A Lady & Her Gloves – Romance Book Cover Trend

Years ago, wearing gloves was the “proper” etiquette of the day. They were a sign of the privileged class and signaled status. In the fifties and early sixties, gloves were worn by “ladies” to social events and I can remember my Mom wearing them to church on Sunday and whenever she went out to a tea or coffee social with her friends. I’ve noticed several Historical romance book covers adding a touch of elegance and interest to the covers with a pair of gloves.

The Memory of Lost Senses

NAL – January, 2014

Circle of Spies

Harvest House Publishers – April, 2014

A Place in His Heart

Revell – June, 2014

A Good Debutante's Guide to Ruin

Avon – July, 2014

Enticing Miss Eugenie Villaret

Kensington – July, 2014

A Grave Matter

Berkley – July, 2014

The Truth About Lady Felkirk

Harlequin – September, 2014

A Matter of Grave Concern

Montlake Romance – October, 2014

I am a fan.  What do you think of this current trend?   Which of the above covers, if any,  are your favorites?

2014 Cover Trends – Pianos

I keep tabs on possible future cover trends as a little side hobby and I’ve collected enough evidence (aka covers) for another 2014 cover trend prediction.  I’m not sure  if using a piano will be a major trend but it is a definite mini trend.

Background items add interest to cover layouts and they are often described in the romance beneath the cover.    During the past two years, we’ve seen women, men, and even couples draped across a lovely settee, divan, or sofa.   I’m hoping that the “settee”  trend is  growing cold and the arrival of a piano or harpsichord as a  background item gives me hope.   However, if the piano appears on too many covers,  I’ll be wishing for its demise in a future Pet Peeves post. Enjoy the covers below and notice how cover designers  used  the “keyboard” musical instrument in their layouts.

A Marriage of Notoriety

Harlequin – 12/14

This hero is willing to teach the heroine about more than the piano.  I don’t believe they really care about the music in this captured intimate moment.

A Passion for Pleasure

Grand Central Publishing – 04/14

I wonder just what this heroine is gazing at in the distance and I love the deep purple gown against the golden piano.

The Nurses's Perfect Match

Harlequin Heartsong Presents – 05/14

I don’t know about nurses and pianos but this scene reminds me of a family that plays together, stays together.

Playing By Heart

Bethany House – 08/14

This is such a great cover, the heroine’s costume looks  authentic, the upright piano rocks, and the title’s play on words wins my vote!

Not Quite A wife

Zebra – 08/14

This cover features another gorgeous purple gown and a white piano or perhaps a harpsichord. Maybe I should alter my forecast to include purple gowns accompanied by keyboard instruments. :D

If you haven’t voted yet in the annual cover contest, you have until May 21st, 2014 to choose your favorite covers from 2013.  Below is the link to the contest:


Until next time,

Where in the world is The Midnight Rose?

I was looking for covers that would fit in our new Avant Garde category and fell in love with the US cover for  The Midnight Rose. When I began researching the publishing details, I discovered there were several international versions released with different covers. My quest for information expanded. All of the covers have different designs and it’s fascinating how each cover designer interpreted the story inside.  Lucinda Riley’s novel falls into the Women’s Historical category and follows one heroine from age 11 forward.  The story encompasses 4 generations from 1911 to the present and travels from India to England.

The first cover I’ll show you is the US release.   I fell in love with the “Monet” impressionist style used by the designer.  (This isn’t surprising since Monet is one of my favorite artists.)  The soft colors and the wistful stance of the heroine enchanted me from the first moment and her Sari style costume instantly reminded me of India.

Midnight Rose - US

Atria – March 18, 2014 – US

Next, is the UK cover and it gives a different vibe all together with wedged hedges in the traditional English garden. It reminded me of England immediately.  The designer also added the hero in a top hat and both H/F face away from the reader to preserve the mystery.

Midnight Rose - UK

Pan Macmillan – August, 2013 – UK

The German version eliminated the heroine and went with an English landscape design. This version didn’t light my fire but it is a pretty cover.

Midnight Rose - German

Goldmann Verlag – January, 2014 – German

The cover released in Norway has a combination of English and Indian influences. We have a Downton Abbey structure and the quintessential English garden but the heroine is dressed in traditional Indian attire.

Midnight Rose - Norway

Cappelen Damm – January, 2014 – Norway

The Italian version changes the reader’s view and features the heroine looking out over the gardens from the terrace. She is dressed in a colorful strapless gown with an exotic flower in her hair. For some reason, she reminds me of a maiden from Hawaii and not India. The mystery of her face is still hidden.

Midnight Rose - Italy

Giunti A – February, 2014 – Italy

My favorite is the US version followed by the Norwegian version. Which covers are your favorite versions of Midnight Rose? Do you agree with me?

Until next time,

2014 Cover Trends – Piers

My first prediction for 2014 cover trends involves an often overlooked background item, the simple wooden pier.   Beaches, oceans,  lakes, rivers, and even streams have  been  popular cover backgrounds but piers also add interest.  I’ve noticed that cover designers have placed piers in a more prominent position on several 2014 romance covers .

Piers visually signal action, i.e. people climbing in and out of boats, walking, sitting, fishing, daydreaming, or even a couple embracing and watching the sunset.  They can also trigger emotions and memories.   Sigh, I’m a fan.  What do you think of this trend?

Carolina Man

Berkley – March, 2014

The Widow's Walk

Harper Collins – May, 2014

The Summer They Never Fogot

Harlequin Romance – February, 2014

Evening Stars

Mira – February, 2014