Now this may be a fabulous book. It may be the most wonderful book on the planet. I may be depriving myself of a life changing experience. But y'know, I'll never read it. Why? 'Cause its cover and spine look just like this book:

Bad designer! Bad! No cookie for you.


In defense of my gut reaction (every damn time I see this book, which is often since it's in our New Books section, it makes me think that LaHaye et al. came out with a new Left Behind book), let me show you the rest of the books in the Left Behind series:

and a really lousy picture (crappy cell phone picture) of the spines of the LB series (with Warded Man somewhere in it...can you tell??) which would be much better evidence if the LB series weren't on the shelf that gets full sun each and every day and therefore has faded all the books to look like they're in black and white. Work with me here!


BikerPuppy said...

But it has action and suspense all the way!

Caitlin said...

You can't realistically expect designers to produce absolutely novel designs all the time.

There is a similarity (and it's a very small one), but if that's the only factor that makes it a bad cover, then almost every book cover falls under that (especially paranormal and urban fantasy works). Every cover shares some elements with other covers, and even illustrated ones have similar trends. This horizontal image stripe is not unique to these two covers. Horizontal image stripes (AND vertical image stripes) are pretty common.

I think the cover's actually done beautifully. It's eye-catching and I love the design of that rune or whatever it is.

Karen said...

Luckily, I have not paid much attention to the "Left Behind" series, so that didn't even blip on my radar when I checked out "The Warded Man" last week. I read it 2 days ago, actually, and it was quite good.

Alissa Grosso said...

But what does "Warded" mean?

Anonymous said...

Warded = magically protected (I think)

It's not the horizontal band at fault. That's something you see on many books, true. It's a little because of the colour palette.

xenobiologista said...

I read enough fantasy fiction to get it, but my first interpretation of "warded" would have been "hospitalized", as in "put in a hospital ward". Guess that's not an American usage?