Monday, August 16, 2010
I'll say one thing for the British. They certainly keep it real! I haven't read The Help, but when you look at the British cover, it leaves no doubt what kind of "help" the book is talking about. I love it. It's raw and in your face. Bam! Now look at the American cover. If the book wasn't so popular, you would have no idea what the novel is about in my opinion. The cover is innocuous and neutral, telling you nothing of what the story entails. Like I said, I haven't read it, so perhaps those birds on a wire, are indicative of what lies within, but you certainly wouldn't know it details black maids working in Mississippi in the sixties.
What do you think? Is the British cover too much? Is it too real for American sensibilities and consumption? I've heard it said that The Help would not have been as big a hit and gotten the publicity it did, if a black author had penned it. What do you think about this? Do you think such a belief is credible? Food for thought. I'm a therapist, one of my many titles, and I like to know what people are thinking and why.
Moving on to The Hunger Games. I haven't read this book either, though I bought it recently and it's waiting on my shelf for me to get some down time to dig into it. Once again, the American cover has no people, but look, there's a bird again! I don't know if the bird is symbolic of anything in the story, but the popularity of the book surpasses the cover art at this point and even I, who haven't read it know the story premise. I assume the girl in the UK version is Katniss and the boy on the over cover must be Peeta. Does the British version capture the image of the characters as you envision them in your imagination? I was surprised to see the UK covers look so cartoonish. I would have thought them to be more edgy, darker, considering the subject matter.
Hope you enjoyed the covers and the discussion. Until the next time...