Friday Faceoff – The book is a film that takes place in the mind of the reader… #Brainfluffbookblog #FridayFaceoffmovietieincovers


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 meme is currently being nurtured by Lynn’s Book Blog and the subject this week featuring on any of our covers is MOVIE TIE-IN. I’ve selected Catching Fire – Book 2 of The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins. Mostly because I think both the book and film are more successful than most notoriously difficult second-in-the-series efforts.


This edition was produced by Scholastic Press in September 2009 and is a strong design that catches the eye on the shelves (I know – I bought this edition, having seen it on said shelves). Red and gold are always a strong colour combination and the design and the unusual bird give a sci fi feel to this cover. If I have a moan, it’s that blocky, rather uninspired font.


Published in November 2011 by Nemira, this Romanian edition is very effective, with the face half-hidden by those red leaves. The detail of the raindrops beading the leaves gives a nice three-dimensional aspect. But then they went and botched it by plonking the title font bang in the middle of the cover in the same shade of red. It both clutters the overall design and is difficult to read – hard to imagine how they could have made more of a mess of it, really.


This edition, published by Scholastic in October 2014, goes for a different suite of colours no less eye-catching than the red and gold. I love the treatment of the font which is both attractive and imaginative. However, that negative effect on the mockingjay makes it look like a fossilised pterodactyl, which isn’t an accurate portrayal of the book. I suppose I can give them a pass on this one – by 2014 you’d have to be living under a rock not to have heard of The Hunger Games, but it goes against the grain to have a cover that doesn’t accurately reflect the book’s genre.


This movie tie-in edition, produced by Scholastic in October 2013 is an underwhelming effort. It certainly doesn’t work all that well in thumbnail – all you see are those roiling clouds. Katniss merely blends into the background wearing her hunting attire. I think this is the least effective of all the covers.

This Scholastic Singapore edition, published in October 2014, is my favourite. Just look at the bird on fire against the black background. Gloriously simple and yet so beautiful and visually compelling. It is also one of the movie tie-in covers and if you’ve seen the film, you’ll know it works really well as a nod to that terrible scene when it all does, indeed, catch fire… Which is your favourite?

26 responses »

  1. I like your favourite Sarah – great choice btw. That’s so dramatic and eye catching and I prefer it to the cover I owned which had a cut out front cover that unfolded.
    Lynn 😀

    • Thank you, Lynn:). Yes – as soon as I saw it, I realised that was my absolute favourite – though I’m always fascinated to see what my visitors choose…

  2. I too think that the Singapore edition is the best. The Jay pin is a link between all the books. It was a great idea from the start to put in on the cover.

  3. I love the last cover too: the theme is similar to the first one (which is the best known, at least for me), but while that first cover only suggests the fire by the color choice, here the fire is present in all its dramatic splendor, and it makes a huge difference.

  4. I totally agree with your choice Sarah. I read the first one, the Scholastic 2009 and do like that one as well, but I like the Singapore one much better for the same reason as you.

  5. I have the first version, too, and I’ll stick with that one because that trilogy is a great example of maintaining a strong cover style while also changing up colors. The font’s the same, the placement of cover elements is the same, but the bird changes a little and the base color changes. We know we’re looking at books of a series, but they still strongly stand out as individual installments–there’s no confusing volumes.
    Does that make sense? Ugh, I’m still in a Nyquil fog from my summer cold…

    • It makes absolutely sense – and yes… I also love the smart cover design which also looked so very different from everything else on the shelves at the time. Brave and clever marketing that worked incredibly well.

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