Friday Faceoff – Burning my bridges…


This meme was started by Books by Proxy, whose fabulous idea was to compare UK and US book covers and decide which is we prefer. This week the theme is bridges, I’ve chosen The Bridge by Janine Ellen Young.


This cover, produced by Aspect in September 2000 is rather gloomy, with its sepia tones and rather hefty medieval styling – which is odd, given this is supposed to be a bridge through space. Frankly, I think this one is underwhelming – even the font is boring. And it’s a real shame, because the book isn’t anything of the sort.


This UK edition, produced by the now defunct Earthlight, has a far better cover in every way. The bridge is a wonderful construction that also closely resembles our DNA, which is a clever double reference to the plague that sweeps through humanity in this apocalyptic science fiction adventure. Even the font pops and fizzles. Needless to say, this one is my favourite. What about you – which one do you like?

22 responses »

  1. What curious choices in that first cover! It’s like they took what people could identify, such as a big brick bridge, and made that, well, it. Light makes it intriguing! This person may as well be raising his hands to Jesus or aliens or Jesu-aliens, honestly. It’s a cover where one saw the title and didn’t feel the need to know anything else. And what IS it about the lack of color? But then, fantasy covers for a while lost all sense of color, didn’t they? Either that or the cold medicine’s draining my eyeball cones…
    Speaking of, stay healthy! 🙂

    • You’re right – colour did seem to be in shades of sepia for a time. As for staying healthy – the grandchildren both had colds when they arrived and today I’m feeling DREADFUL, aching limbs, sore throat, headache… Oh joy…

      • Oh no! The boys both had strep, and now Bo and I both have some sort of cold that HOPEFULLY isn’t strep. So far Blondie seems unfazed, but then, she was determined to attend her school’s Arbor Day no matter what…

      • I’m drinking plenty of fluids, taking quantities of vitamin C and homeopathic remedies… Fingers crossed it isn’t strep – that’s really miserable:(.

      • And reading my reply, I realise it sounds as if I’m worried about ME getting strep – I’m not. I was commiserating and hoping you and Bo were able to avoid it.

  2. Two very different covers for the same book. While the first does fit the traditional idea of a bridge more, it does sound like the second cover fits the bridge in the book more. I like it when the cover for a book fits the story. I think I prefer the second one as well as it has a more sci-fi feel, which from your description is the genre of this book, and because it seems to fit the bridge depicted in the story better.

    • I try quite hard to include books I’ve read – otherwise how do I know whether the cover is appropriate? I didn’t appear to have read all that many books about bridges so my options were limited.

  3. I’m going to go against the trend here and say I actually kinda like the first one! I’m often drawn to dark and gloomy cover art though, maybe that’s why 😀 Shame that it doesn’t really represent the book though, because I think that’s important too.

    • And wouldn’t the world be a boring old place if we all liked the same thing? I was half hoping SOMEONE would have some love for the first cover – or it would mean the cover artists REALLY didn’t know what they were doing…

  4. I’m not going to disagree with everyone here, that US version isn’t great.

    What I particularly like about the UK version is the combination of title and imagery. If you had the image without the title, I’m not sure you would know it was a bridge. But, putting that title with it immediately tells us, okay, that’s a bridge; it doesn’t look like a bridge, but it must be, and now I’m intrigued. I want to find out what sort of bridge it is and what’s happening.

    The first does the opposite by showing us a bridge that looks just like, well, a bridge. Less intriguing, I think.

    • Yes… I was disappointed that the US cover artist was quite so literal about this one – particularly as it is just a good book. Many thanks for swinging by, John.

  5. I don’t know the book, but from what you’re writing, the second one seems to be fitting the story and genre better, so it would be my choice as well.

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