Faceless Book Covers by Julie Arduini

With the re packaging and re release of my first novel, Entrusted, I’ve spent weeks researching images and learning cover design. I’m not quite ready to reveal the covers for my Surrendering Time series (formerly the Adirondack Surrender Romance,) but I noticed a couple things.

  • I am now looking at movie posters, traffic signs, restaurant menus and basically anything with pictures and text through the eyes of what I’m learning. I can spot a bad photoshopped head thrown on a body or if fonts are too clunky. It’s almost like a Sci-Fi movie. I’m in so deep with what I’ve seen while training that I can’t go back when it comes to looking at things.


  • Covers are changing, at least with romances. I’ve always depended on a cover to show me the characters. As a reader, I enjoy looking to see how accurate my imagination is to what is on the cover. That’s not always the case these days.

This picture from pexels is an example of what a book cover could look like under the new trend of not showing faces.

Here is what I’m noticing with romance covers:

  • One character is displayed instead of two. Sometimes the character isn’t even visible. They are far off so you can’t see facial features, or, their back is turned to the reader.


  • If both the hero and heroine are visible, it’s not their full body. The placement is such that heads aren’t there, or, heads are turned. You might notice the man has stubble and dark hair, but you don’t see the eyes.


I’ve read that this is the new trend to allow readers to use their imaginations. When characters are displayed, it takes away the “romance” of wondering what they look like. Each reader has a different concept of what the character should look like, so those kind of covers work.

I confess, I’d rather see the characters up close, features visible. That said, I do have people on my covers, and I’m curious if the hundreds and hundreds of pictures I’ve looked at match what readers have pictured in their minds. In my research I read that the cover doesn’t have to be 100% accurate when it comes to details, but interesting and close enough to get them to want to know more.

So, how about you? What kind of cover do you like? Characters on covers? Characters far off? Facing the reader? Not facing the reader? Not on the cover at all? I’d love to hear what you think.

About juliearduini

Julie Arduini loves to encourage readers to find freedom in Christ by surrendering the good, the bad, and ---maybe one day---the chocolate. She’s the author of the contemporary romance series SURRENDERING TIME, (Entrusted, Entangled, Engaged,) as well as the stand-alone novellas, MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN and RESTORING CHRISTMAS. She also shares her story in the infertility devotional, A WALK IN THE VALLEY. Her other latest release, YOU’RE BRILLIANT, is for girls ages 10-100, written with her teenaged daughter, Hannah, and is book 3 in their SURRENDERING STINKIN’ THINKIN’ series. She blogs every other Wednesday for Christians Read, as well as monthly with Inspy Romance. She resides in Ohio with her husband and two children. Learn more by visiting her at http://juliearduini.com, where she invites readers to opt in to her content full of resources and giveaway opportunities.
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4 Responses to Faceless Book Covers by Julie Arduini

  1. Kristen Heitzmann says:

    Good insight Julie. I love a cover with faces when the face is spectacular–in my opinion–and will rarely even see what a book is about when the characters are cheesy–in my opinion. I like the partial trend that hints at the characters, but decapitation like the photo above is just sick.

    Liked by 1 person

    • juliearduini says:

      LOL, I chose that picture on purpose to see if anyone would find it as horrific as I did. I confess it is not a book cover that I’m aware of, but if I saw it as one, I would not like it!


  2. Gail Johnson says:

    Interesting, Julie! I like no faces or faces turned where I can’t see them. I like imagining the characters myself. If I have a picture that doesn’t match what I think the character should look like I’m like, “What?” I’m reading one now that I can’t like the woman because of the picture. Yes, I know that’s absurd, but that’s the way it is.

    Liked by 1 person

    • juliearduini says:

      Gail, that makes complete sense to me. In fact, I believe that is why the trend is the way it is. I’m the one with odd thinking seeing if the picture matches my imagination. I think it is all very interesting!

      Liked by 1 person

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