Saturday, 20 August 2016

Cover me!

New cover ... almost ready

They always say you shouldn't judge a book by its cover.

I have received both praise and 'stick' for my covers. Interestingly, the praise has always come from readers, who appreciate the nuanced designs, with their nod to original Victorian covers. This is deliberate ~ if you read the novels, they are not just fast-paced detective stories, but a 'homage' to the style of novels of that period, which I frequently reference as I go.

The 'stick' has come from various publishers who've approached me to ask if I'd consider letting them take the series over ON CONDITION that they changed the covers.
Original early Victorian book covers

The fact that you are looking at the new cover for Murder & Mayhem (published via Amazon this September in both book and ebook formats, all being well) gives you an indication of my response. Thanks but no thanks. My covers are designed by a local graphic designer and friend, David Baird, thus adding an extra personal dimension to them. They are now published under the Little G imprint (my own) adding yet a further one. They are special and it is a joy to share them with you.
It always amuses me, when scrolling through Twitter, to pick out the 'I bought an off-the peg cover' people. It's so easy to do. Frequently you see the same muscled bloke or shapely young lady with accompanying pout in different settings, and wearing different clothes depending upon the genre. There seems to be a smallish pool of cover models out there. And although many of the cover suppliers SAY they do not re-use a design once you have bought and paid for it ~ they do. Believe me. Seen it with my own eyes, Guv.

So I shall continue to have my own bespoke covers, using original Victorian fonts and colours (the new one is teal) until I run out of ideas. And in case you can't make out the blurb, here's what the complete description on Amazon will look like:

The city is in the grip of railway mania when the gruesome discovery of several infant corpses in an abandoned house forces Inspector Lachlan Greig of A Division, Bow Street Police Office and his men to enter the dark and horrific world of baby farming. It will take all Greig's skill and ingenuity to track down the evil perpetrators and get justice for the murdered innocents.

Meanwhile two school friends Letitia and Daisy stand side by side on the threshold of womanhood. One longs for marriage to a handsome man The other craves entry to higher education. Will their dreams come true, or will their lives be shattered into little pieces by the tragic and unexpected events that are about to overtake them?

Some lovely late Victorian covers
Hope meets horror, and Parliament is threatened by anarchists in this rumbustious fourth Victorian crime novel, set once again amongst the dangerous twisting alleyways and gaslit thoroughfares of 1860s London.

Grab DIAMONDS & DUST, the first in this electrifying series.

Praise for HONOUR & OBEY: 
“Carol Hedges has again delivered a book which is written to be devoured in one sitting.” ~ A Woman’s Wisdom

Praise for DEATH & DOMINION:
''I love Carol Hedges' portrayal of atmosphere .... and her gift for conveying exactly what a character is like.''   ~  Rosie's Book Review Team

So that's my cover philosophy. That's how I roll. How about you ~ what makes a 'good' book cover? Please join in the debate...


  1. Call me what you want but I love the colour

    1. I call you a man of great taste and discernment!

    2. Thank you. I know at least one who wouldn't sign this.

  2. I love your covers, Carol - they fit the books. And of course we can't please all the people all of the time!

    1. Absolutely! And at least it's MY choice...and not a former publisher's.

  3. Love yours. My publishers refused the lovely cover I'd had designed for my Edwardian. There are times...

    1. I think publishers like to keep it all 'in-house' see my blog!

  4. I love and admire your continuing success with this series, Carol. The covers convey exactly the right nuance of Victorian England in all its glory!

  5. I also like the classic simplicity of your covers, Carol. They fit the period of your books beautifully. It's interesting that covers generate so much 'opinion'. In the past few years, I've entered a number of my books for a particular award and in the judging, the covers are given as much weight in marks as the content and editing. Sadly, I always lose points on my covers, but I don't care now. I choose covers and fonts I personally like. Yours have become identified with your books too, so that's great. When I see one of yours, I immediately know what it is. As Anita says, they convey Victorian style perfectly!

  6. I too love the style of your covers. You've created a Signature style, recognisable at a glance. Isn't that what advertising always strives for? And don't the big advertising companies charge big bucks to provide just that? Well done.


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