Cover Love: Plainsong

Book covers fascinate me. Why are some covers kept for various editions and languages? Why are some changed for seemingly every publication variation? I don’t know, but it makes for very interesting viewing.

Kent Haruf’s Plainsong had more cover versions than I was expecting.

The book I read had this cover: big Western sky, lots of clouds, and what look like foothills.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

The large print version takes a very similar approach, but it has more light shining through the clouds. This is my favorite cover.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

And so does the audio edition.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

There are at least four Picador versions. The Picador Pan MacMillan paperback features a girl with her hair blowing in the wind, with two men on horseback in the background. Appropriate enough, although I thought Victoria was described as having dark hair. Perhaps I imagined that.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

A Picador Pan Macmillan paperback from 2013 shows the back of a woman with her hair blowing in the breeze, and she seems to be in a field of flowers. This is one of my favorite covers.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

Another Picador paperback version, this one from 2001.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

One more Picador edition, although I’m not sure of the date.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

Foreign language editions are always especially interesting. The Dutch version features horses fighting. I don’t remember that in the book at all – did I miss it?

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

The Finnish edition shows a girl looking pensively out into the distance. It seems fitting for the book, so no complaints from me.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

Four French editions, one with a bridle, one with two men on horseback, and two with a windmill (but not the same windmill).

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

Then there’s the German edition, with the isolated farmhouse.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

The Italian edition looks like it’s for a book set during a drought.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

The Persian edition also features a girl, looking out alone, but this girl is in the middle of a crop of some kind. Wasn’t she staying with ranchers, not farmers?

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

Finally, the Polish edition shows an old suitcase.

Cover image for Plainsong by Kent Haruf

Which cover(s) are your favorites?

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The “Cover Love” series is inspired by the “Judging Books by Their Covers” series previously featured at Quirky Bookworm.

Cover Love: True Grit

The “Cover Love” series is inspired by the “Judging Books by Their Covers” series previously run at Quirky Bookworm.

For a book only published in 1968, there were a surprising variety of cover versions:

True Grit Covers

Find the book: Print | Kindle | Nook | Audible | Goodreads

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Cover Love: Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

This new “Cover Love” series is inspired by the “Judging Books by Their Covers” series previously run at Quirky Bookworm.

Please note that this post includes spoilers.

If you haven’t read Dark Matter, I’m not kidding: the book is much better if read it without hearing spoilers. In other words, read the post only after you finish the book. If you still need to read it, find the book here: Print | Kindle | Nook | Audible | Goodreads.

Most cover images are taken from a question posted by Katie, who facilitated the discussion on the book in the Facebook group. I’ve also quoted her commentary on the German and Spanish titles, as I thought it was very insightful.

Dark Matter American hardback cover

The American hardback cover, and the one I was familiar with before searching for additional covers. It’s eye-catching, but before reading the book I didn’t care for it. After finishing the book, I can appreciate the subtle hints it provides to the story.

Dark Matter American paperback cover

The American paperback cover. I feel like this is more distracting than the very similar hardback version, but emphasizes the thriller aspect of the novel.

Dark Matter Australian cover

The Australian version. I get what they’re doing with what looks like red paper cut into strips, but it doesn’t do much for me as a cover, and it wouldn’t make me pick up the book.

Dark Matter German cover

The German cover. “The subtitle is odd, because he’s not a time-traveler, he’s a multiverse traveler. But time travel is Zeitreise, so I guess maybe the plural Zeiten conveys the multiple worlds? And then runner because it’s a race to return to his life/the thriller aspect. Mostly I just love the blurb, because Wahnsinn (craziness) is one of my favorite words in German, and also totally describes this book! Germans and their understatement.”

Dark Matter Spanish cover

The Spanish cover “focuses more on the dark matter of the title (materia obscura = dark matter), with all the little drops of oily black, but it also reminds one of the examples Jason2 uses to explain the multiverse to Daniela, describing each universe as a pond and the fish inside have no idea there are other ponds and a world that holds them.”

Dark Matter Twitter promotional cover

Promotional cover posted to Twitter. Makes complete sense once you know the story, and I’m surprised it was never used in any other way (apparently).

UK paperback cover. I like the maze-like appearance, and that Amanda is there, as she was such a great character. This may be my favorite cover.


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Cover Love: Emma

Emma was first published in 1815, so there have been almost endless cover versions. To give some limit to the ones I shared today, I stuck with English-language ones published since 2000, with one exception for a 1998 Dover version that I thought was especially pretty.

Pictures are shared in date order, beginning in 1998 and ending with two 2015 200th anniversary edition covers.

emma-cover-collage

See all posts in the “Cover Love” series.

Find the book: Print | Kindle | Nook | Audible | Librivox | Goodreads

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Cover Love: Burial Rites

burial-rites-covers

Hannah Kent’s novel Burial Rites was our book club selection last month, and I asked about the cover versions in the Facebook group, but then realized I never asked about it here! Three covers – hardcover, Australian, and paperback/Kindle. I first was drawn to the book by the hardcover version, but ended up reading the Kindle version. And I like both of those covers! I don’t dislike the middle one, but it would never have made me take a second look at it.

Which one do you like best? Would one of them make you more likely to pick up the book?

(Interested in what I thought about it? Here’s my review.)


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Cover Love: The Chosen

I love looking at all the cover variations that exist for different books, and Chaim Potok’s The Chosen had many versions. Here are my favorites:
The Chosen favorite covers
The first one on the left is the print copy I bought, but the second from the left is from the new Kindle version – I love how it’s so different from all the other covers. The two on the right I like because of their focus on the two boys, and their friendship.

Four other English-language covers:

The Chosen covers

Like foreign-language versions as much as I do? Here’s one in Czech, two in French, and one in Italian.

The Chosen Czech French Italian

And apparently it’s a really popular book in the Netherlands, because these are only four of the Duthc-language covers I found. There were several others as well, I just couldn’t find good-quality cover images to show here. 🙂

The Chosen Dutch

If you read the book (or have read it in the past), is your cover shown in the examples I shared? Which one of these is your favorite (or favorites)?

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Cover Love: The Count of Monte Cristo

A look at some of the covers The Count of Monte CristoThe Count of Monte Cristo has had through the years. Emphasis on only some of them – as popular public domain book that’s been translated into multiple languages, there was no way to feature them all.

(Click on any of the image groups to enlarge it if you want to see more detail.)

The Count of Monte Cristo Covers 1

From left to right: the Robin Buss translation I read and think is the easiest way to read the book in English, the beautiful leather bound version that I think is the prettiest one, a movie tie-in version that confuses me a bit (what is he doing? Would it make sense if I’d seen the movie?), a striking one that wins points from me for being something so different than everything else I was seeing, and a Canadian version that goes really heavy on the symbolism.

The Count of Monte Cristo Covers 2

From left to right: The author, and then lots of depictions of the Count, often looking off into the distance.
The Count of Monte Cristo Covers 3

More of the Count, many of them still where he’s looking off into the distance. Why is he almost always looking off to the right (his left?). In the version on the far left he’s also floating somewhat menacingly in the clouds over the Château d’If.

The Count of Monte Cristo Covers 4

Speaking of the Château d’If, it features prominantly on many covers as well.

The Count of Monte Cristo Covers 5

The far left cover is, based on my shaky French, perhaps one of the earliest ones after it was compiled into a single book. The next is a Tor paperback, which caught my eye because I didn’t realize Tor published “classic” novels – I thought they were all science fiction/fantasy. The middle seems like it’s taking a small item from the book, and using it as the cover inspiration. The fourth had me convinced it was a children’s adaptation (though apparently it’s not, but it is an abridged version). And the final one makes me laugh and feel sad. Do you see why?

The Count of Monte Cristo Covers 6

And these covers make me smile. They’re mostly comic book adaptations of the story, or heavily abridged and illustrated editions. Those illustrations are hilarious and I love them. I think the fourth one might be my favorite – the look on his face is fantastic!

Which one is your favorite? Do you have an alternative cover that you want to share – I think you can post it on the blog’s Facebook page (or if you’re in the book club group on Facebook I know you can share it there). I had to quit looking for more cover options as there are just. so. many.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

Three years ago: Link Love

The Count of Monte Cristo Covers

Cover Love: The Well of Lost Plots

This new “Cover Love” series is inspired by the “Judging Books by Their Covers” series previously run at Quirky Bookworm.

The Well of Lost Plots UK and US covers

Two UK versions, and two US versions. The first two are both UK paperbacks (?), but the third is the US hardcover & Kindle version. The fourth is the US paperback and ebook version.

The Well of Lost Plots French German and Spanish covers

I do love non-English-language covers. They’re so fun.

In order: French, German (Kindle), German (paperback), and Spanish.

Once again I’m having a tough time deciding which is my favorite. I like the car in the library in the first one, I like the text sea in the third, and I like the Jurisfiction badge and dodo in the fourth. The German Kindle version has so many great images behind the witch, but I don’t like how prominent the witch is on that cover. The German paperback includes the plane which is fun.

Find the book: My original review | Print | Kindle | Audible | Goodreads

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

Cover Love: The Princess Bride

The Princess BrideThe Princess Bride: S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure by William Goldman by William Goldman was originally published in 1973 and has had many covers since then. I stuck with English-language covers only this time (to put some limits on how many I was featuring).

The original cover from 1973:

The Princess Bride 1973 Original Edition

A paperback from 1977 that absolutely SCREAMS ’70s cover to me. Please note the “A Hot Fairy Tale” line – I’ve never heard of that before, and I’m not sure I want to go searching for what it means:

The Princess Bride 1977 Paperback

The 1990s brought the 25th anniversary of the publication, and some fresh covers.

The hardcover 25th anniversary edition:

The Princess Bride 1998 25th Anniversary Hardcover

The paperback 25th anniversary edition. This one seems pretty awful to me, and would not remotely make me pick it up and try it:

The Princess Bride 1998 25th Anniversary Paperback

A paperback version from 1999, featured only because I am horrified by the depiction of Westley:

The Princess Bride 1999 Paperback

Not enough? There was a new cover for the 30th anniversary:

The Princess Bride 2003 30th Anniversary Edition

And a new one for the audio book:

The Princess Bride 2006 Audio

One featuring the stars of the movie in 2007:

The Princess Bride 2007 Hardcover

And another one in 2008 that does no justice to Westley:

The Princess Bride 2008

Finally, the newest cover is in honor of the 40th anniversary. It’s a beautiful one too:

The Princess Pride 2013 40th Anniversary

This new “Cover Love” series is inspired by the “Judging Books by Their Covers” series previously run at Quirky Bookworm.

Buy the book: Print | Kindle | Audible

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

Cover Love: The Book of Speculation by Erika Swyler

One very newly published book, three covers. How can that be? Because there is the US version, and the others are the still-to-be-published UK and Australia versions. They’re all great, in very different ways.

The Book of Speculation Covers

The stack of books in the US cover caught my eye, and made me want to read it, but that house on the cliff in the UK version is so eerie, and so right for the book. It would have also made me pick it up and see what it was about. And while I think the Australian version is really pretty, it wouldn’t have made me want to read the book.

Which cover do you like the best? Would one of them (or more) make you pick the book up and see if you liked the description?

(Curious to know what I thought about it? My review is here.)

This new “Cover Love” series is inspired by the “Judging Books by Their Covers” series previously run at Quirky Bookworm.