So the author of this book has commented in the press that she doesn’t like the cover. To be specific she said that it is “ultimately degrading to women”.
Wow — there are lots of authors out there who don’t like their covers, but very few go public about it. It is part of the unspoken deal between publishers and writers. No one really knows which covers will work and which won’t, so they all shut up about it until the sales have gone way or another (Then they can say whatever they like, fully backed-up by the weight of hindsight).
Of course the press have had a field day with these criticisms. The combination of an unhappy author and accusations of sexism make for great copy. In fact, rarely has The Bookseller website had so many comments about an article on its website (21 and counting)
What is funny is that most people can’t see what the author is complaining about (How refreshingly un-PC).
That is because, ‘degrading to women’ are the words that the media have leapt upon. But it seems that this is not the point that the author was trying to make.
Her real issue seems to be that that she believes this is quite a serious and insightful book about life in the City but the cover has made it feel ‘fluffy’ and ‘frivolous’. In other words, the book is pitched completely wrong. The tone of voice does not represent the content.
Wrong tone of voice…attracts wrong readers…who get frustrated or let down by the content…and don’t recommend it to their friends…and so sales never grow.
All very logical, but the real problem with this cover is that it is just very, very dull.
There is nothing here to engage the reader, arouse interest or grab attention.
Unless of course the publishers knew that their greatest weapon was the author herself. After all, she is a self-published success story — If anyone knows how to generate attention and awareness it will be her.
Do you think they deliberately created a crap cover? (It does appear that way…)
Was this all part of a grand plan to generate a storm in a media tea cup and get us all to notice a book that otherwise would have slipped under the radar?
If so, Avon and Polly, we salute you..