Monday, 1 June 2015

A book by its Cover

There is a well known saying, You Can't Judge a Book by its Cover. There are many arguments that come down on both sides of this. It is something I have been thinking about, a lot, recently. The second book in the DI Shona McKenzie Mysteries will be out in July. The cover, above, has been designed by Cathy Helms, of Avalon Graphics, and I love it. I think it gives a real flavour of the book, moody and mysterious. It also incorporates elements of Dundee in the river and bridge. 

So back to our discussion of judging a book by its cover. I have read some books which I have enjoyed, where I hated the cover. I will add here that this does not happen often. The first thing a reader notices when they pick up a book, is the cover. If they don't like it then they will, most likely, put it down again without going any further. The cover and title are crucial in encouraging the reader to look further. This moves them on to the blurb on the back of the book. This is a whole new post so I won't go into it here.

Successful author entrepreneur, Joanna Penn, has written a superb post about book covers and titles. She has recently gone through the process of changing hers. You can read more on the link below

Whether you are traditional, or indie, published, it is important to ensure that books are professionally designed. Working in partnership with the designer is key. I respect Cathy's talent and expertise, and she is willing to listen to me, the author. The result, I am sure you will agree, is fabulous. It think it fits in well with the cover of book one, Killer's Countdown.


That's the first time I have seen them together and I am feeling quite emotional. Not long now until they will be together on my, and the bookshops, shelves. The release date for Killer's Craft is 20th July, 2015. It's exciting being an author. 

If you haven't, yet, read Killer's Countdown, you buy it from Amazon by clicking on the links at the top of the page. The books, are stand alone mysteries, but you will see the characters develop more fully, by reading them in order. 

That's it for today my Bookaholic friends. I'm off to have a glass of Champagne to celebrate. What do you mean it's too early. Maybe you're right. I'll wait until this evening. 


  1. Interesting post, Wendy. I like your covers.

  2. Great covers, Wendy!!

    1. Thank you Candy. My designer has done me proud.

  3. The principles of design come to mind when one sees your covers together. And of course one wonders what colour will be taken up for the third - green? Brown? Yellow? There is the 'linking' colour of blood for the two covers, which we presume will also be there on the third, together with other design aspects such as typography and type of image.
    One can bring up the covers of prolific authors on Amazon and note the evolution of their brands; a very interesting process. Here, we see it already. So I congratulate your designer in that regard.

  4. Thank you Rosanne. We both wanted a very distinct brand and I think my cover artist has got it spot on. I am fortunate to have found her