January 7, 2014 • Cee • Holy Mother Cover


Inspired by Pure Imagination Blog and Stacked.

Let’s be honest, nobody follows the age-old cliché that tells us not to judge a book by its covers. If you say you do, I am side-eying you. Book covers are the first thing that attracts any of us readers to a book. Before you pick up a book, the cover can essentially make or break a book. If I don’t like a cover design, I won’t pick it up. Lucky for us, publishing companies publish different cover designs, especially when a paperback book comes out. Sometimes we like it, sometimes we don’t. Let’s discuss these cover changes, shall we?

Today, we look at the cover of Just One Day by Gayle Forman!

I’m kind of indifferent to both covers. They’re okay, but not the absolute greatest. However, if I am forced to pick (like if you ask me in caps-lock), I’d most likely say the hardcover one is the best one.

The main thing I love about the hardcover design is the scene it portrays. In it, we see the cover model, posing as the main character of the book, waiting. It’s a very good interpretation of what happens in Just One Day because it emphasizes on time. We see a watch on the cover (which my eyes is instantly drawn to). It’s an extremely important item for Allyson — both physically and mentally. Time is something that is emphasized throughout the story, especially during the scenes with her and Willem. We know that [spoiler]Allyson received a watch as a graduation present from her mother, and Willem takes it away from her so she’d enjoy herself better without a constant reminder that time is passing and that moments like the ones they’re experiencing are extremely fleeting.[/spoiler] Allyson seems to be forever stuck, waiting for Willem. I just love that.

Also, I loved that we’re seeing her through glass. There’s a barrier between her and the rest of the world, as if she’s in a bubble that’s preventing her from knowing why Willem disappeared. It’s great!

The paperback cover makes me cringe a bit because the color tone of it is a bit washed out. Whoever developed this picture used too much cyan in the dark room. The blue and the teal font color do not work either. It just makes the book even more…blue. I do like that the two characters are walking, hand in hand, since it happened in the book, and that there’s a camera glare right on Willem, blinding us from properly seeing his full form (y’know, almost like a symbol of how he suddenly disappears without a trace and how we and Allyson have no idea who he is and what happens). It’s fitting.

Okay, so it turns out I like the hardcover design a lot more than I expected after I typed this post? Huh.

Which cover design do you prefer? Is there anything you would change in it? How do you feel about the color tone of the paperback cover?


9 Responses to “JUDG(ING) A BOOK BY ITS COVER | The case of Just One Day by Gayle Forman”

  1. I can see where you’re coming from in terms of the hardcover cover, and I definitely see the symbolism in it, despite not having read the book (yet!). But personally, if I saw these two covers, I’d pick the paperback. Again, I see your point about the colors, but I personally like the color(s). Maybe it’s because it isn’t so colorful; maybe it’s because I’m a fan of blue in general, but I also like the image on that better, at least as someone who has not read the book.

  2. I love how you described each because they’re both accurate and I prefer when book covers portray a bit of what happens in the book or what the book is about.

    I own a paperback copy of Just One Day but the cover is that of the right (probably because I bought it before they decided to change the cover…). I love my copy because of all the reasons you described. It’s just perfect and apt than the paperback cover because the story is more about Allyson than both of them.

  3. Missie says:

    I don’t think I would grab this book with either cover

  4. Nara says:

    I don’t particularly like either of the covers haha. But I really like your interpretation of both of them! I hadn’t really thought about the deeper meaning behind the images. I actually own a paperback with the cover on the left though lol.

  5. The hardcover is definitely my pick. For people who haven’t read the book I think that the paperback almost gives you a sense of what might happen and I don’t like that. I agree that there is too much cyan going on, I feel as if they’ve just popped on a x-process filter over the top.

    Also what is it with the authors name being larger than the title font? I just don’t get why that is a thing, I say same size or smaller but wow the title font on these are just so minuscule and using a script font almost makes it unreadable. bah humbug.

  6. I don’t actually have a preference, because I don’t like either one. There’s just nothing that screams me to pick this book up, even though I really want to read it. I think they are a little bit boring and they don’t stand out on a shelf.

    Since I haven’t read the book I can’t judge which cover portrays the inside of the book better, but going by what you said above I would choose the hardcover because of the watch and the waiting. Also, it’s not like the main characters are together a lot in the book, right? Going by the paperback it seems like it’s a love story where the main characters are in each other’s presence a lot, but I thought that’s not what happens in the book. So it can be a little deceiving. Anyway, I haven’t read Just One Day yet and I need to fix this soon.

  7. I prefer the serif font on the paperback, but I’ve got to agree that the hardback cover is better. The oversaturated blue hue is just…gah, painful to the eyes! And it just looks so bog-standard romance novel too. The hardback isn’t the most eye-catching, but it’s certainly not as standard as the paperback.

  8. Lisa says:

    Wow! Great description and reasoning for your choice, and I would have to completely agree with you. The hardcover, just looks better (my descriptions aren’t as great as yours). The paperback cover, just doesn’t really seem to match with the title and the synopsis. Plus its weird that were looking at the back of people’s shadows…

    Anyways, I made sure to purchase the hardcovers. Thank you for this awesome post!


  9. Annie says:

    They’re both not amazing but if I had to pick, I would definitely pick the hardcover too. I just hate the light in the paperback version. It doesn’t look good at all. The composition feels a bit off too. Anyway, I haven’t read this book yet so I can’t base my opinion off the story but I totally agree with your opinion!

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