Interesting post at the Literary Hub site, comparing covers. Wow, some of them are so different.
I should add, none of these are SFF covers. But they’re interesting!
a) I would never in a zillion years have printed the words backward on a cover. Not only would I not have thought of that, I hate it. I literally couldn’t figure out the title Notes from the Fog without looking at the US cover. Plus I don’t like the cover image either. So for me, the UK cover is a big failure. I wouldn’t say I like the US cover either, though. Tiny, tiny print on an image of unidentifiable equipment doesn’t do it for me. If you click through and know what that equipment is, well, what?
b) For There There, the UK is the one I prefer, and I like it okay, though in a somewhat “well, whatever” kind of way.
c) Evenings in Paradise. Both are okay. I like the bright splash of yellow.
d) Killing Commendator. Hmm. Tough. Fine, okay, the one with the owl.
e) Asymmetry. The US cover. For a change, I agree with all the comments over at the post.
Okay …. glancing over the whole lineup, I see I prefer the US cover fairly strongly or very strongly to the UK cover on five out of sixteen covers. I prefer the UK cover fairly or very strongly for just one. In general, US audiences are expected to prefer US covers and vice versa, so that rule does hold here.
Out of all 32 covers, I find eight covers actually repellent, thus demonstrating, I guess, that I am not the target audience for literary book covers. For me, the worst, most repulsive cover is … no, hey, I don’t want to bias you. If you’ve got time, click through, scan through the covers, pick the ones you like most and least, and we’ll see if we all agree.