Judging Covers

Last week a Publishers Weekly blog post looked at the differences between US and UK book covers. Fascinating stuff. There is also sometimes a difference between Canadian and American book covers, and sometimes even titles. Example: Canadian author Lawrence Hill’s The Book of Negroes. In the USA and in some other places, the book is known as Someone Knows My Name. The author’s webpage (linked above) shows the US, Canadian, and Australian covers for the book. Apparently the title change was a good idea for the US market. I’m not sure what the book is called in the UK.

I’m not sure what to make of all these local versions of books. But, I figure it is all marketing right? And marketing is about tuning in to the culture and making a product attractive to people, so I guess it makes sense. But it can be confusing. I work in a bookshop, and sometimes people come in with the UK title of a book, and we say it isn’t available, then we figure out that the book has a different North American title. Good times.

What do you think about books and the different covers or even titles in different places thing? Legitimate? Confusing? Both?

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