When Sarah MacLean was in high school, she told her English teacher that her dream job was “romance novelist.” She’s now a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. Her least favorite part of the writing process is “the second-to-last chapter.” And one of her favorite parts? The covers! She’s here to talk about the jacket of her latest release, One Good Earl Deserves a Lover, which features a heroine who wears glasses.
“About a year before my book came out, my editor sent me an email asking for a quick description of the book’s plot, along with physical descriptions of the hero and heroine, and anything else I wanted to ask the art department. I’ve learned that the Avon art department is the best in the business, so I don’t overthink this part—I described the hero and heroine, explained that she is an expert in anatomy and horticulture and asked for one thing: spectacles.
“When I first saw my cover, I thought it was the most beautiful I’d ever seen. That gorgeous blue dress, the wall-hanging like an oriental rug, the ebony desk (both of which I wrote into the book)… and spectacles! Gorgeous, gold-rimmed spectacles!
“My covers are usually finished long before the book is because of my schedule… but I couldn’t believe how much this cover inspired my writing. I even wrote the desk and the dress into the book because I loved them so much.
“The first version had gold lettering. The final version has what my husband refers to as ‘radioactive-pink’ lettering, which I adore, in part because that color has become a bit of a calling card for my books.
“Usually these images are shot with a model and then given a digital overhaul to make them feel more historical. While romance covers used to be mostly original oils, you can tell that my books are all photographic—something that speaks to the more modern sensibilities of my characters, I think.
“I love that on the stepback (the inside art that is a part of many romance novels), you can almost feel how much the hero cherishes the heroine. This book is probably my most emotional—and the stepback really shows it.
“In short, the cover is perfect. I invite you to judge the book by it.”
Thanks, Sarah! The cover for her next book, No Good Duke Goes Unpunished, was just revealed too. (How great are Sarah’s titles?)
What do you guys think of this cover?