♪ let’s talk about text, baby. ♪

"Mr. Marley" by Cris Wicks (Click to see his work)

I’m a bit of a text-a-holic. A font freak, if you will. Give me some good-lookin serifs, sans serifs, demi-bolds, and ultra-lights and I will not be ashamed to fawn over your type design.

In relation to cover design, typography plays a pretty large role, at least for me. There are countless instances where I’ve loved a particular cover’s art except for the type choice. It’s almost as if the particular font at fault was an afterthought, which kind of neuters my soul.


This may seem finicky and nit-picky, but I view type design as another form of an artistic element that bears its own weight when it comes to designing a cover. Fonts have structure. They have architecture. They have readability and legibility qualities. They can set a tone or mood when placed against a texture, photograph, or color. They are neat, sloppy, uniform, and last but not least, they highlight titles and author names. It helps me to remember whether I want to check out a book if I can remember an eye-catching font. Beautiful Creatures, anyone?

But rather than point out all the covers that missed the mark in Cover Love (or rather, have been thrown into the Type Tragedies category in the back of my brain), I’d prefer to showcase a collection of titles and type design that I absolutely love.

Note: I’m not including any prior Cover Love titles. They’ve already passed with flying colors in my book.

I’m sure I’ve missed plenty of titles. (Okay, seriously, the Internet is so vast and I eventually had to go to sleep) Feel free to post some of your favorites in the comments!

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27 thoughts on “♪ let’s talk about text, baby. ♪

  1. I’ve always loved the cover to Dull Boy. I’m just sad that there doesn’t seem to be another book coming for that series (unless I’ve totally missed it…)

    As a typography nerd, all of these covers are extremely pleasing on the eyes and make me want to go peruse dafont.com for hours on end. 🙂

  2. Great choice of typography covers. I agree with you that font is very important and can make book cover look ugly or beautiful. The same goes for the insides of a book.

  3. OH MAN! I love the font on The Disreputable History so much! and Basically, the font of How to Say Goodbye in Robot is the main reason i bought it.

    I like the text on Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour OH OH and also Flash Burnout. AHHHH and Vinyl princess. I could go on and on and on and on and on but I won’t but MAN CAPILLYA I LOVE THIS POST!

  4. Ooh, those subtly-curvy Rs on the Across the Universe cover are divine! I’m a huge font-lover, too — of course, now I can’t think of any more examples, but the ones you chose are terrific!

  5. You know me C, I appreciate font *almost* as much as you do. It can make or break a cover (in my opinion). I love that you included Gone by Lisa McMann. Those covers are stunning, simply for the font alone & I don’t think they get enough recognition. I was a fool & totally bought Extraordinary due to it’s beautiful cover – then realized it had horrible reviews, after I got home. Oops.

  6. How to Say Goodbye in Robot is one of my favorite books and a big part of what grabbed me in the bookstore is because of the cover and the beautiful font. Having read the book I think it was a brilliant pick for the mood and tone of the story.

    • Yes, I did PSnark’s 5 challenge too! Except I couldn’t boil down all of 2010 to 5 covers, so I did 10. 😉 Thanks for sharing your link. I think Pegasus’s type choice was beautiful.

  7. We deal about fonts a lot at work too, but it kind of sucks that the graphics we do at work can only use Helvetica. Ah corporate world, you can be so boring.

    BUT ANYWAY. I agree! Fonts can make or break the cover. And I love that you included Feed in this one. That was probably one of the few times that a book cover grabbed me and I wanted it even before I knew what it was about. That bloody RSS feed and the title just reeled me in (and it helped to find out that it was a book about zombies and blogging too). 😀

    • Ah, but most of the textophiles I know adore Helvetica. Have you seen the documentary?

      I have yet to read Feed, but I love that cover, too. It definitely outshines its successor, Deadline.

      • Well Helvetica looks good when used properly. It gets boring when you keep on using it all the time. 🙂

        Oh yes, Feed definitely outshines Deadline. I don’t know if the second book has something to do with radio or something since it has that squiggly lines…wavelength? Radio waves? Haha, the term escapes me.

  8. I totally agree. With some covers, the title treatment is such an afterthought, and it ends up looking so blah. I love the covers you picked.

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