cell coverage: angry young man

Confession: This may not come as a surprise, but I’ve become a little disoriented lately with the onslaught of Sad Girls in Pretty Dresses plastered on every single YA title’s cover. They’re dark. They’re moody. They’re alluring. Heck, they may even be setting trends for prom dresses, for all I know. They all. Look. The. Same.

But when I went to my local bookstore the other week, I spotted another dark, moody and alluring title that didn’t feature a red/purple/black dress and an ornate floral design:

What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you see Angry Young Man’s cover? I’m pretty sure I saw the spine before sliding this novel out from the bookshelf, but I can tell you that when I first turned it over to look at the front, my immediate reaction was something along the lines of: “Whoa.”

Those dark clouds, seemingly on the precipice of disaster, are stunning. Whether they were color-treated in the comp or not, they’re beautiful and dark and angry and an effective illustration paired with those thin, uppercase words in the cover’s title. And pairing these reds and oranges against its dark and desaturated background? That wasn’t exactly a light-handed decision.

This brings me to one of my favorite generalizations about covers like these. Angry Young Man represents a specific characteristic of cover art that bears a strong sense of purpose. One glance at this photography and you know what it’s about, no questions asked. It’d be difficult to deny the kind of magnetic pull to read the inside of its jacket, especially after you run your hands over its smooth, lightly textured cover. This cover art isn’t drowning in a sea of Sad Girls in Pretty Dresses — it is the prom dress.

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14 thoughts on “cell coverage: angry young man

  1. Oh this cover looks very… angry! lol Sorry but it does. I think my favorite element would have to be the red & orange type against that stark gray tones. Very clever.

  2. I really like this cover. It says “fire and destruction” to me. These were very deliberate and excellent choices.

    It reminds me of the cover for hush, hush by Becca Fitzpatrick, my favorite of all book covers.

  3. My immediate reaction to this was the same as yours – WHOA. Talk about intensity, anger, potential disaster, etc. just from some stormy clouds. I have no idea what the premise of the book is but I will definitely be checking it out!

  4. Loving this cover. I love weather, so dark clouds, to me, immediately mean TORNADOES. I don’t know if that’s what the cover designer was going for with that, but I’m intrigued. Also, they further support the fact that said young man is angry.

  5. The cover combined with the title makes me feel like something very bad is about to happen, or just happened. It definitely makes me want to read the flap copy!

  6. The cover caused a “Whoa” response in me too. But I tend to like covers with symbolic objects. (I don’t mind the sad girls in pretty dresses covers, however. There are many that are very striking. Of course, your comment causes me to wonder what the male equivalent would be. A sad, but hot guy in a tux? Or just a hot, shirtless guy as per many romance novels?) I do like Chris Lynch, so I’m glad his book has such a cool cover.

    • Hmmm, now you’ve got me thinking about the male equivalent. That’s a VERY good question. I feel like a lot of “boy books” for YA don’t have a bunch of faces on the cover. (Twisted, Leviathan, and Little Brother come to mind)

      I absolutely love the cover art for Hothouse, also by Chris Lynch.

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