Monday, May 17, 2010

Reader Faves, Part I

Last week, we asked readers to send us children's book covers they love. Anything that really stands out on the children's book shelves. Some readers selected old favorites, while others chose newly released books. We're still collecting suggestions, so keep on keepin' on sending us your faves: carol (at) carolbrendler (dot) com.

From Louise P.:
All the World by Liz Scanlon, Illustrated by Marla Frazee

“That cover just makes me 'feel' what it's like to be a kid. Loooove this illustrator! She captures the kid's-eye view, I think.”
From Care:
Make Way for Ducklings and Blueberries for Sal

“The covers are ingrained in my memory with love...”
From Sheila:
Swimmy by Leo Lionni,

The Grannyman by Judith Schachner,

and The Always Prayer Shawl by Sheldon Oberman and illustrated by Ted Lewin.

"Each of these is a picture book with a large illustration on the cover and with the title printed in a font that nicely reflects the tone of the book."
From Mary Atkinson:
The Water Seeker by Kimberly Willis Holt

"The black silhouetted picture of a child holding a tree branch, dowsing for water against the speckled yellow (sunrise? sunset?) sky, the silhouetted grasses, trees, birds--already sets the tone and tells me this is my kind of book."
From Tami @ Through the Tollbooth:
Countdown by Deborah Wiles

"The yellow background is so eye catching and the grooves on that big black record are fantastic."

Keeper by Kathi Appelt

"Photos on the internet don't do this one justice. The cool blue of the ocean pulled me in but it was that red boat and gorgeous greenish mermaid- glazed in shiny stuff that absolutely makes this cover POP."
From Sarah Johnson:
Sarah also selected Kathi Appelt's Keeper, adding, "What a wonderfully designed cover! I love the use of color. For example, red on the boat and for the title font."

Thief Eyes by Janni Lee Simner

"Simple, and eye catching. The coin with runes on the cover suggests both the setting and the genre (fantasy) and gives wonderful hints about the story."
This is fun! Let's have more. Readers, you can do this, it's not really that hard. :-)

Incidentally, I just ran across this blog, The Hiding Spot, while looking for cover images. Nice appearance, with YA novel reviews with comments on covers. Also, the blogger highlights a "Cover of the Week." Likin' it.


  1. Every one of these is wonderful, Carol.
    I know you focus on the jacket but one thing I've noticed more this season, maybe, than ever before is many of these books' high quality design throughout. Chapter titles in Kathi Appelt's keeper use the same font as the title- and look like mermaid tails to me. The trim size is special, too. Small and square and thick, it feels like a treasure in my hand as I read.
    The "documentary" material- hundreds of period photos and song lyric and everything else- interspersed through Debbie's Countdown is a milestone of great book design, enhancing the context and meaning of a novel. Bravo.

  2. That's interesting, perhaps especially in light of the growth of ebooks. Maybe printed books are going to become even more special objects in the future.

  3. Which will make it even worse when I drop them into my bath water, Carol.

    I'm being facetious, but a bit serious, too - I love beautifully designed books, but I don't want books to become rarefied objects, which is what some people think they will become. If that happens, I won't be able to afford them. Besides, it sends the wrong message about who literature belongs to. Does it belong to a privileged class with deep pockets? That's an attitude I thought we got rid of in the last century. Maybe I'm just whining because I know what side of the upper class/lower class fence I'll be on. I'll be staring longingly at books in fancy store windows, and I'll be wanting to strangle the rich SOB who comes out with a purchase in hand.

  4. This may make book thieves of us all. Didn't Oliver Twist get caught stealing a book from his future benefactor?

  5. Okay, here's my contribution to the Faves. It's not brand new (2008) but it's not old. Title is The Friskative Dog, author is Susan Straight.