Although I finished reading this book several weeks ago, it still sits on my bedside table, one of the first things I see in the morning and the last at night. The book itself doesn’t even belong to me (it’s my friend Millie’s), but I’ve been negligent in returning it to her because I’m so in love with the cover art.
It’s such an elegant portrait, isn’t it? There’s something so intriguing about this woman, the regal curve of her neck and tilted head, the golden highlights in her hair, the gentle slope of her shoulders, tapering into slender arms. She’s holding a small, framed picture, and it appears to be a child’s face, although it’s blurry and dim. Even though her face isn’t visible, you can feel the longing and sadness in her posture, see it in the way she bends toward the photo, and holds it tenderly in both hands.
It’s odd, because as much as I love this photo, it doesn’t really seem to fit the novel. If you’ve read the book, you’ll know that a child doesn’t figure into the story. And somehow I don’t picture Claire Pendleton, the title character, as this languid, sorrowing creature.
But I’ve become quite attached to this book (well, mostly to its cover). This happened with another book I read recently, and it occured to me that there were some curious similarities between the covers. Take a look…
This cover grabbed my attention right away, and I loved the way the photographer captured the gentle bend of this woman’s neck, the wisps of hair escaping from the clip, and most of all, her fingers, poised to clasp the necklace. And once again, as much as I loved this cover (and the story between it!), the cover art isn’t immediately identifiable with the plot or characters.
So why are these particular book covers so attractive to me? Is it the mystery of these women, whose faces we don’t see? Is it their obvious vulnerability? Whatever the reason, these covers are small works of art, and were enjoyable in their own right, quite apart from the book they wrap around. I know you can’t judge book by its cover, but these would make it tempting to try.
Now tell me, have you recently read a book with some especially lovely cover art? Do you even notice similarities between the kinds of cover art which attracts you?
And here’s a site dedicated to book covers…you can even submit your own favorites.