Mary’s Bad Marketing Awards 2008: The Year of Misleading Cover Art

In Which a Bookseller Tries to Sell Good Books with Awful Covers

The Chief offenders:

“The Wilde Women” by Paula Wall, from Washington Square Press: The cover makes this look like a panting, heaving bodice-ripper. In fact, it is a well written story about a quirky, southern family with romance and a good portion of humor thrown in. An ideal beach read for the thinking woman.*

“The Gargoyle,” Andrew Davidson from Doubleday – due August 5th: This book looks like some kind of weird, goth, vampires-in-love saga. Not so. Actually, an amazing feat of literature. Redemption without sentimentality. A haunting paen to Dante and a ticket to other times. My favorite book this year.

“Madapple” by Christina Meldrum from Knopf: Looks like “Carrie Part II: Now I’m Really Pissed.” In reality, a lyrical examination of family relationships and identity with a fascinating narrator. Marketed as a teen novel, this book is for everyone and belongs alonside its literary fiction peers with “Before I Die” by Jenny Downham (another brilliant novel unfairly relegated to the teen realm).

*I can include this one since it came out in paperback this year & so the publisher had a chance to Make Things Right.

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