On… covers

I haven’t posted about covers in a while. Partly because I’ve been working on movie stuff and haven’t had time, but also because I just don’t think about them much anymore. Covers are something that you completely lose your mind about with your first book, and learn to shrug off with approximately two seconds thought by the time you hit no.4. (Ditto publicity. Ditto distribution. Ditto reviews. You can’t control it, so don’t worry about it. Just start your next project. Far more productive. Everything will be fine. And so on.)

I loathed my first cover, it looked like the kind of book I’d be embarrassed to read in public. I only wrote the damn book on a whim so that girls like me and my friends could read something funny about love that wasn’t stupid, and here I was, with an incredibly stupid cover. I kept thinking ‘but… my book is so much cooler than that’. Didn’t matter: that year in the UK, all the light contemporary fiction books written by women had cartoon covers with a dickish girl sporting a red coat and a jaunty leg kick, and so it was for me. (I got a hand in the US cover, which I like very much.)

Anyway, now that I’ve had five books published in the UK and the US, as well as in German, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Polish, Lithuanian and Slovakian, I just enjoy covers, and everything else book-related, with a sort of benevolent detachment. Once I’ve written the books, I love them, but they’re no longer mine, and I don’t really worry about them again. (I know some people say their books are like their babies, but dude, now that I have babies, I know that’s not true. Books are books. Babies are your heart.)

The US covers of the Brooklyn Girls series are terrific. I was unusually involved in this cover process, thanks to my lovely editor. I suggested we try something that looked a bit like an Instagram picture crossed with a Richard Linklater movie still, so we did, and they’re perfect. (Okay, so the middle one is a leetle streetwalkery, but what are you gonna do.)

the_wild_one      brooklyngirls_us      loveandchaos_us

The UK covers of the series are also great – reminiscent of posters for a TV series, which I like, and the girls have attitude. (Third cover coming soon).

brooklyngirls_uk      loveandchaos_uk

Dutch covers are cool, like Dutch people. You can tell this girl is a teeny weeny bit stoned, about 6.1″ and will probably have a home birth one day. I am waiting to see the next Dutch covers. If anyone can find them, shoot them my way.


Polish covers are incredibly damn stylish. Especially the first one, with the girl looking out of the cab. She’s adorable.

dziewczyny_po      polish_2

German covers are a little kooky. Why is she chasing men with a butterfly net? Why is the Indian protagonist suddenly white? Why are there boys in a tree and why is she wearing red rainboots? Why not. Don’t ever change, Germany.

gluckssalat      derletztesingle      mannerfrei

Spanish covers are a little surreal. As though Bridget Jones wandered into a Pedro Almodovar movie.

spanish_2       spanish_1

And… we shall have to wait for Italian, Lithuanian and Slovak covers, as I don’t have them yet. Can’t wait. I hope the Italian cover is all bunga-bunga-esque.

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One thought on “On… covers

  1. William Kendall

    They have to grab the attention straight off. One of my friends wrote for Berkeley, and the covers they came up with all had the sort of Jackie Collins- Sidney Sheldon jewelry motif.


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