New cover for Turner

You may have noticed that the cover for Turner has changed. The new cover is this:

It has a number of elements from the novel: the creepy Bwystfil in the red hooded coat, the bike and Dynion toilets from the prologue, The Old Man pub, the stormy weather, the red colours that resemble blood... It does a good job of telling the reader what they're in for, helped by the tag line. It was designed by Create Imaginations. Let's take a look at the other covers Turner has had.

This was the previous cover, which I really like - in fact, I think it is beautiful - but it doesn't give such clear guidance that the novel is survival horror, and as a result I think I am missing the audience who would normally gobble this kind of book up.

While I'm on the subject of the new book cover, as always happens with these projects we went through a few revisions. The first design was this:

I liked it, though the hooded figure needed work (since this image was a woman). However, I was keen to see if there were other ideas than a lighthouse.

This was another early version - the background was kept for the final image, but the figure turned around and made horrifying to add to the horror element. I certainly wouldn't like to bump into the final version of the Bwystfil on a dark night!

Turner has had quite a few covers. The first one in print was this:

I only used that for early review editions, but loved the stark contrasts, the Sauron-like lighthouse, and the idea that darkness was coming. Then I did some image work myself, and ended up with this:

This was the first cover to go on the retail copies. The print copies had a wrap-around image, and later I made the horizon reds brighter for the e-book versions. And then the blue edition came out.

What do you think? Which cover is best?

(I'd like to add that I had one of those horrible situations writing this post - I created a long post about the history of the covers, with loads of images, and it got lost when a freakish screen-wiping error coincided with Blogger's autosave. I was dispirited and decided I couldn't face re-writing everything. Then a few days later I changed my mind, girded my loins, and started afresh with a slightly shorter post. And now 'tis done. I can rest.)


Sam Oakley said...

I definitely like the most recent one best - nothing wrong with any of the predecessors but I think it sets the tone just right and I like the story details you can spot. All that redesign work paid off!

Bec said...

I prefer the latest cover, because it suits the story. The title font is perfect. Those of us who like a scare know we will enjoy what's inside the book!

Karl Turner said...

Thanks both of you, I'm glad other people agree with me. It's not affecting sales yet, but maybe in the future!

Sam - I wouldn't have thought it was your kind of book, I see you as more of a Cold Fusion 2000 person (academia, literature, the importance of history). :-)

Bec - yes, I'd forgotten to mention the font, a lovely cracked look. The first letter in red reminds me of a bloody dagger; the white letters are like bleached bones, or one particular bone that plays a part in the novel. You're right, people should be able to tell what they're going to get even before they read the blurb.

Shaun Horton said...

I like the most recent one, though, I have to say, I like the one where the woman is in front of the lighthouse, as she looks very much like I imagined Bran Ddu.

I also have to say, I love Create-Imaginations. They did both of the covers for my two books so far and I have no doubt that despite keeping my eyes open for other reputable companies to try, I will be using them again in the future.

Alyson said...

Definitely a good idea to have cover match the content! For that reason the latest version is most suitable, although I think the blue one with the bloke is very beautiful.

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