Judge a book by its cover

This week’s Weekly Geeks assignment is to:

Pick a book–any book, really–and search out multiple book cover images for that book. They could span a decade or two (or more)…Or they could span several countries. Which cover is your favorite? Which one is your least favorite? Which one best ‘captures’ what the book is about?

I think this is a great assignment. I’m the type of person who loves looking at book covers. I would rather pay more for a hardcover edition of a book if the cover looks a lot better than the paperback version. Most of the time I buy a book primarily because of the cover and a few good reviews. I’m paying for that outlook now.

I picked Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief because it’s one of my favorite reads. This is the cover I have on my hardcover copy. I checked Amazon.ca and found the same cover for both hardcover and paperback.

I searched around and found this vastly different color at Amazon Denmark. It’s creepy and I like it better, but it does misrepresents Death. He’s not some creepy bloodthirsty creature. He’s pretty sweet with a hard job and no vacation from it.

This cover I found at Amazon.uk. It does not fit the theme of the book at all. Liesel, the main character, is not just reading books in the novel. She’s living her life and learning so much about loyalty and trust, the meaning of family, and how strong love is and how hard loss can be.


I’ve seen the French cover before but it’s creepier than the Denmark version. Liesel dancing with Death? Not exactly.

So which one do you prefer? Do you judge a book harshly by its cover?

About Vasilly

Mother, daughter, sister, college student, bookworm, lover of chocolate and coffee.
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20 Responses to Judge a book by its cover

  1. gautami tripathy says:

    I agree with your views about the last one. It somehow demeans the book.

    I got the first one..

    Covered!

  2. Erotic Horizon says:

    I didn’t realise that there was so much cover for this book.

    I loved this book as well – good choice

    E.H.

  3. wordlily says:

    Wow, some of them sure are different! I’d only seen the first one before. (*Whispers* Haven’t read this book yet, either…)

  4. Suey says:

    I love that you picked this book. Fun to see what the other covers look like. I’m still liking “my” cover with the dominoes.

  5. claire says:

    I haven’t read the book yet (but mean to) so I can’t judge the cover by its relevance to the story. If I had to choose, I love the third cover the best, from UK. I also like the last one, the French.

  6. Becky says:

    I was hoping someone would pick this book. I’ve followed the covers for this one for a while now. My favorite is the Australian one which you don’t have listed. But I own the American one with the dominoes.

  7. Kerrie says:

    An interesting selection Vassily. I think I have seen a plain blue one somewhere too

  8. Lightheaded says:

    I have the first one (the one with the dominoes) but while I haven’t finished it (more like I haven’t gone past the first fifty-pages, not so much an apt read for small pockets of reading time) I do like the second cover you featured.

    My take on that cover is simple really: Death is watching the girl. The cover looks creepy but those picking up the book will realize that this is a story narrated by Death. And the most popular representation of Death we have so far is that creepy guy with a scythe🙂

    Oh goodness, I wish I have that cover.

  9. J.C. Montgomery says:

    Oh man, I have this book sitting next to my laptop now as it is one of my February TBR’s.

    The cover of my edition is the same as the first one you show, however I really like the last one.

    I’d like to say I never judge a book by its cover, but there have been some that literally bothered my eyes and I got because it came highly recommended. First thing I did was to make a book cover for it or use one of the stretchy ones I got for my school books. That way I am not distracted from the contents as that is what really matters.

    Great post! I have really been enjoying seeing everyone’s picks.

  10. Bernadette in Australia says:

    I haven’t read the book so just judging by design alone I like the one with the dominoes. I must read this book.

    I try not to judge by covers, and as I generally go looking for specific titles these days it’s not too difficult to get the book I want without worrying too much about the cover.

  11. Robin of My Two Blessings says:

    I’ve got the book with the first cover and will be reading it soon. But I really like the Denmark one with the shadow of death standing over the child. Creepy but interesting.

    Mine is finally up now.

    Happy Reading!

  12. Jo says:

    I like the one with the dominoes. I’e got the bottom one though. haven’y read it yet though so can’t comment on its apprpriateness

  13. Maree says:

    I haven’t read the book, but all the covers _ apart from the last one, which is just … strange …are great.
    Happy Weekly Geeks🙂

  14. CoversGirl says:

    I really want to read this, but I haven’t managed it yet – the library’s copies are always all checked out. None of these covers resemble the one I’ve seen here in Australia; I’d love something resembling the Danish version.

  15. Chris says:

    I like the ones I really shouldn’t!

  16. Iliana says:

    I probably prefer the dominoes cover just because it’s the one I happen to have but actually I like that death isn’t so prominent on the cover. I kin dof like the Amazon.UK one but you are right, that almost seem like you are just going into the life of a reader.

    Great weekly geeks choice!

  17. Eva says:

    I love the French one-it’s just beautiful! In a creepy way, of course.😉

  18. softdrink says:

    I haven’t read this yet, but I have the first cover. I like the second cover, bt from what I’ve heard of the book you’re right about it not fitting.

  19. "Confuzzled" Shannon says:

    I must be weird because I kinda like the ones with death on the cover.

  20. Joanne says:

    I like the playfully creepy death covers. But my favorite is the girl lying down reading. I like that she appears to be on a stage (from the curtains) which fits the story since it is told from death’s pov.
    I own the domino cover, and I don’t like it.

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