Friday, 13 January 2012

The Hunt for Cover Girl

I have seen her face countless times now, peering out from the book jacket with hope in her eyes, or is that sadness? Or courage? There is definitely something in her eyes, an emotive quality that speaks to the reader and says "know me and you will understand!" No wonder then, that so many jacket designers have seen her and stuck her on their books.


Who are you mysterious Cover Girl, with your chocolate drop eyes, freckled nose and slightly pouty lips? She seems rather lovely, if a little pensive. I wonder if she has seen terrible things in her tender years; whether she doesn't smile, not because the photographer asked her to be that way, but because she knows things that no young person should know?

Come forth little Cover Girl - I will be your friend! We shall tumble in autumn leaves on the heath! We shall make snow angels and then wrap our mittened hands around mugs of hot chocolate! And then, as the night grows dark we shall huddle up in our sleeping bags and talk about make-up and boys! 

Oh Cover Girl. I hope you are real and not the crazy whacked out imaginings of some nerdy teen with too much time on his hands and access to photoshop. 

If you are out there, find me. 


  1. She's a lovely cover girl but on far too many covers! A face that might launch a thousand books if publishers are not careful!

  2. Hey Nicole,
    Good spot! I can offer a bit of feedback here from a publisher's perspective:
    We at Usborne did actually realise that this photo had been used before, but only when we were quite far along with the design process for Mockingbird. It's funny, even though she looked familiar, it is difficult to recognise a face in a different context, sometimes - like when you see someone in the street and can't place them. But we loved the girl and the way the image has been used within the overall design and decided that she was still the girl for us - despite it being unfortunate that she's got a twin (or two - actually, I hadn't seen The Fatal Child before now).
    To give you a bit more info on why designers like her so much, here's what our cover designer who chose her said:
    "She has a very open face that kind of draws you in, but also a strong sense of determination that gives you a feeling she is quite tough. The best pictures of faces are the ones that give you several sides of their character."
    Not everyone will agree that we should have gone ahead, but hopefully this is some interesting insight!

  3. She's also on the cover of the new Helen Dunmore INGO novel STORMSWEPT if I'm not mistaken. Thoroughly sick of her. I do wish publishers would be less lazy.