Thursday, May 13, 2010

Sumptuous Historical Romance Covers

I'll admit it - I'm a ho for reprints. I know they tend to annoy most readers (unless the reprint in question is for a book that had been selling used online for outrageous sums), but for me it's a by-product of my job. Yes, I buy lots of shiny, new titles - but I also spend quite a bit of time scouring for reprints to replace tired, worn, pathetic looking copies of old favorites.

Sometimes the publisher simply recycles the old cover art, or uses a bland, stock image. Or in the case of Harlequin, they revamp them entirely, with delectable results. This summer, Susan Wiggs' Chicago Fire trilogy is getting reissued (for the second time, by my count) and Harlequin has slapped them with such sumptuously beautiful covers that I'm actually contemplating buying them all over again. Never mind that I already have two copies of The Firebrand in the Bat Cave Keeper Stash.






Seriously, aren't these covers dreamy? Of course if you don't like beef-cake-less, headless heroine covers, you probably think I'm demented, but....

Dreamy, dreamy sigh.

And for the record, I lurved The Hostage and The Firebrand, but was meh on The Mistress. These will be released back-to-back-to-back starting with The Hostage on June 29. I hope they sell oodles, since I keep hoping Mira will let Wiggs write Phoebe's story.

18 comments:

Holly said...

I'm not a fan of the headless, but these work for me because they have partial heads. Partial is good, none is bad.

Head aside, these are gorgeous.

I'm all for reprints as long as they're clearly marked as reprints. I bought Jennie Crusie's Anyone But You in effing hardback for like $15 awhile back (it's category btw) not realizing it was a freaking reprint. I've never been so annoyed in my life.

Alea said...

These are beautiful! I have this problem a lot when books get new covers. It always seems I want to new cover even when I have the first one already! Gah! I might have to add these to my wishlist just because of their beauty alone!

BevBB said...

Well... uh... beautiful, yeah.

But, to be perfectly honest, you know what my first thought was?

What is it? The pastel prom series?

Hehehe.

Okay, I'll be good and go away now. Bye. ;-)

Lil Sis said...

You know I wonder if books with these types of covers actually sell BETTER than the beefcake covers. I was thinking this since people may not worry about what other people will think if they read them in public. I mean, I could care less about book covers but I do know that for some people romance covers can be embarrassing.

Lynne Connolly said...

Why are they all wearing bridesmaid's dresses? The covers just don't look historical to me. I'd have picked them up as contemporaries, like Susan Elizabeth Phillips' "What I Did For Love."
I want the beefcake back.

nath said...

Ohhhh, those are very pretty :D I actually like headless, partial heads :)

Although I'm not sure they fit the stories... and actually, they don't look at historicals... but they are gorgeous :D

AnimeJune said...

I just the back blurbs on these and HOLY COW I want to read the Firebrand! But I already have a Wiggs on my TBR (a contemporary)...

JamiSings said...

I don't know, the dresses are pretty, but the headless/partial head thing always creeps me out.

I think it goes back to that restaurant/bar in Corona Del Mar, The Quiet Woman. It's always creeped me out how the pictures outside the bar show a headless woman with those words above it. Like if saying the only way to make a woman quiet is to chop off her head. Guess it worked for Henry The 8th but still....

BevBB said...

Why are they all wearing bridesmaid's dresses? The covers just don't look historical to me. I'd have picked them up as contemporaries,

Thank you, Lynne. Bridemaids, not prom. Exactly. Says nothing about them being beautiful as covers, it's just that I knew I wasn't imagining it being a set. 'Cause they all look like the same dress only in different pastels.

Weird when one doesn't trust one's own eyes. Peer pressure. Bah. ;-p

You know, I can go either way on it being a male or female on the cover. It all depends on the pose, I think. These aren't bad. It was seeing them altogether that threw me. I have seen some indivdual female only covers in years past, though, that I honestly did not like. Usually because the dress/pose/something absolutely does not match the story, though.

I will say this. I'm getting rather tired of male stomachs - you know those oh-so-impossibly-ridged six-packs - in every conceivable situation and sub-genre. Who do they think they're kidding?

Wendy said...

Actually, I think Bev had it right the first time with prom dresses. I mean, these dresses are pretty - and the stereotype of unfortunate bridesmaid dresses does exist for a reason :)

AnimeJune: I adore The Firebrand. I know, I'm not helping.

One thing I didn't mention in the post: these covers remind me of Anna Godbersen's YA series (Luxe, Rumors, Splendor etc.) Seriously, I'm a sucker for pretty dress covers.

EC Sheedy said...

I liked the covers. A lot. They are pretty, lush, and romantic. I'm not sure how they stack up against those magical six-pack abs :-) but I would definitely pick them up and take a look.

Sabrina (about happy books) said...

Love the covers, they are really beautiful.

BevBB said...

I thought I commented again late last night. Maybe I dreamed it? o.O

Anyhoo, I would think prom dresses now too except for the fact that they're almost identical, Wendy. You know how sometimes bridesmaids dresses are almost exactly alike but just little variations? That's what they look like to me. Which is what was bugging me, I think, until Lynne brought them up.

And that's avoided like the plague with prom dresses. They would at least have distinct differences to them. ;-)

Karenmc said...

The covers are lovely, and they don't reflect the stories at all, which is okay by me.

Wendy, my reaction to the trilogy was the same as yours. The Mistress just didn't grab me the way the other books did (especially The Firebrand - me loves that book a lot).

Carrie Lofty said...

I was just the opposite, Wendy. I was "meh" about The Hostage, quite liked The Firebrand and adored The Mistress. In a very roundabout way that I won't get into here, The Mistress inspired my upcoming Song of Seduction. I love the new covers but they look more like prom dress ads than historical covers--very pretty, but nothing that evokes "historical romance" to me. I think it's that they're photographs rather than photos-turned-paintings, but photo covers are just becoming unavoidable.

kay - Infinite Shelf said...

These are beautiful! They kind of remind me of the YA series covers "The Luxe". Love, love, love it!

Marg said...

I would buy these. I did buy the first couple of Luxe books based on the covers. Haven't read them yet.

Kaetrin said...

I've never read any Susan Wiggs but those covers are mighty purty.