Thursday, August 6, 2015

Liza dissects a book cover and gives it a review.

Oddly the creator of the book I selected didn't respond to my many emails. But that didn't stop me from analyzing and writing a review of her and the author, AR DeClerck's efforts.

Having received all I needed from AR DeClerck, I proceed forth, because I can, I want to, and if not, I won't have time to do anything else and the crickets will set in.

Warning to crickets: I will pour chocolate over you, which makes you seem edible.

Now that I've proven I will drown crickets in chocolate, let's proceed. Here is the cover I so admired:
Rachel Olson of No Sweat Graphics
Designed this lovely cover
I'm so impressed by the attention to detail and beauty of this cover that I decided it needed to be reviewed as well.

First, let's talk about the items that are often ignored: accuracy of time.
The worst offenders of wrong clothes are the Regency designers. Because slender skirts aren't as appealing as long flowing skirts to the modern eye, they constantly put a thousand feet of flowing fabric about the young lady. Seriously, those poor girls would have to hire skirt carriers to pull so much fabric. Here's a painting from the era that gets it right:

So let's check the accuracy of the dress that AR DeClerck found for her heroine. (look above at the cover. I'm not downloading it again.) Focus on the skirt and compare it to this 1869 drawing from the magazines of September 1869.  Oh okay, I'll put the two side by side.

The big difference is that our heroine wears an evening gown, rather than a day dress, but it is such a gorgeous evening gown, I'm glad she did. At least it’s gorgeous now. Rachel, the cover artist, did change the colors to something that is tasteful to modern viewers. In truth, the Victorians loved clashing colors, not only in their parlors, but their gowns. I can only surmise the women were very bored with their pointless lives.
As to why she is wearing an evening gown: Given their propensity for trouble, it's possible they dressed for a ball and got distracted by magic.
I cannot see enough to verify the men's wear, but it looks right enough for evening wear. The tie looks proper, although they tended towards bright colors in their ties as well.  Nor will I complain about the lack of sideburns on the fellow. While a great many men preferred long sideburns, others did not. There was no single fashion for men. They basically did what they bloody well pleased. 

I love that Rachel put the crow on his shoulder and filled the background with runes. While those details won't mean a great deal until you read the book, (which I strongly recommend you do) they do alert you that this is not just a romance, it's something more. And the rune circle behind their heads also draws your vision to the gorgeous couple.

All in all, I think this is a superb cover. It provides a great deal of detail, but avoids being busy. The color tone is unusual, but very pleasing. The couple is beautiful and handsome, caring, but not kissing, which fits the story, for giving into love was not easy for them.

In addition the title and author name are clear and legible. 

So I give this cover 5 stars.

There you have it. My first and possibly last cover review. We'll see.

And if you wish to see this cover some more, you can find it attached to AR DeClerck's book

The Alchemist's Kiss


  1. this was also my favorite cover!

  2. What a great way to examine a cover. It does draw your eyes to the book with the rune circle as a focal point.

    1. Thanks Melissa. I was inspired by it's rightness.

  3. I too love this cover! Great review of it, Liza. I can't wait to see what you'll do next! So far you have interviewed a book and reviewed a cover. You always think of something clever to do. :) Tweeted.

    1. Thanks, I don't recognize walls and barriers. Maybe I'll have the chocolate covered cricket interview a book. And don't forget, I used to kidnap authors. Don't have time for that anymore, but it was great fun while it lasted.

  4. I just love your written voice, Liza, not only for your quirky humor, which I greatly appreciate, but because you always teach me something cool and interesting. This cover is beautiful. Enjoyed reading your break down on it. I'm going to have to go click.
    Great post! Let us know about the chocolate covered cricket. ;-)

    1. Thanks, I was overwhelmed with the rightness in this cover. Normally, I'm horrified by the inaccuracies of Historical romance novel covers. So I felt I had to review this superb cover. One good thing about chocolate covered crickets...they don't chirp. Just in case you missed it I have a sci fi series rolling out. Bk 1 is 99 cents til 8/10


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