Skin

Many have commented on the “face cover.” Recently I’ve noticed some covers where one face is just not enough. Two faces – or more precisely, parts of two faces – are squeezed into the confines of a book jacket. It means that the two faces must be very close together. Most here seem to be moments of intimacy – Kiss Me Kill Me by Lauren Henderson (Delacorte 2008), Going Too Far by Jennifer Echols (MTV Books 2009), Tell Me a Secret by Holly Cupala (HarperTeen 2010), Heartbreak River (2009) and Winter Longing (2010) by Tricia Mills (Razorbill).
In my circles of friends and family, we’ve had several discussions about the kinds of photos that teens like to post on their Facebook pages. They are often like the pictures I see here – particularly on My Invented Life by Lauren Bjorkman (Henry Holt 2009). There is a physical closeness in photos that people of this generation are snapping, that people of my generation might have felt uncomfortable with.
So I wonder how these book covers fare with their target audience. I’m guessing they work well with the teen female audience.

Faces

Kiss Me Kill Me: Longing to be part of the in-crowd at her exclusive London school, orphaned, sixteen-year-old Scarlett, a trained gymnast, eagerly accepts an invitation to a party whose disastrous outcome changes her life forever. Ages 12+. Reviews 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
Going Too Far: Forced to spend spring break in a Birmingham, Alabama, suburb riding along with an attractive rookie police officer on the night shift, rebellious seventeen-year-old Meg finds herself falling unexpectedly in love. Ages 12+. Reviews: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
Tell Me a Secret: Seventeen-year-old Rand’s unexpected pregnancy leads her on a path to unravel the mystery of her sister’s death and face her own more hopeful future. Ages 14+. Reviews: 1, 2, 3, 4.
My Invented Life: During rehearsals for Shakespeare’s “As You Like It,” sixteen-year-old Roz, jealous of her cheerleader sister’s acting skills and heartthrob boyfriend, invents a new identity, with unexpected results. Ages 14+. Reviews: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
Heartbreak River: When her father dies while whitewater rafting, sixteen-year-old Alex feels responsible, but when tragedy strikes again she must face her deepest fears in order to reclaim her love of the Colorado river where she grew up–and of the boy she grew up with. Ages 14+. Reviews: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
Winter Longing: Tundra, Alaska, high school senior Winter learns about love, loss, and starting over when her boyfriend, who has been her best friend since second grade, is killed in a plane crash the day after they declared their love for each other. Ages 14+. Reviews: 1, 2.

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3 Responses to “Skin”

  1. To be honest, I tend to not even consider books with these covers. I know I shouldn’t judge by the cover, but if that’s the first thing I see, it’s going to sway my decision. These usually make me assume they’re going to be cheesy and without depth.

  2. These covers make me uncomfortable as well. I always assume the content is too mature for middle school.

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