Friday Faceoff – When Life gets blurry, adjust your focus… #Brainfluffbookblog #FridayFaceoffdoublevisioncovers


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 being nurtured by Lynn’s Book Blog and this week we are featuring DOUBLE VISION covers. I’ve selected Dark Matter by Blake Crouch, which I really enjoyed – see my review.


This offering was produced by Crown in July 2016. It’s actually a really simple cover. Just the title in black, against a red background and then parts of the top and bottom of the title font copied in diminishing sizes. But isn’t it effective? So very clever and eye-catching! It just goes to show that some of the best designs are those with the simplest dynamic. And yay for a complete lack of clutter – other than the title and the author’s name, there is NOTHING ELSE on the cover. This is my favourite.


Published in May 2017 by Ballantine, this is the reverse of the previous effort. Except they have also added a repeating pattern of the protagonist across the background, which I think looks really effective, adding an extra dimension to the design. In thumbnail, I’d decided that this one was my favourite – until I’d enlarged it to discover they’d decided to add some chatter top and bottom, which I think compromises the visual impact of the whole design. What a shame! Otherwise, it would have been my favourite.


This edition, published in August 2016 by Pan, is another awesome design. It’s funny how some authors are lucky enough to have several wonderful book designs. If you have read the book, you’ll know that that this design is especially appropriate, as well as visually beautiful. It is a real contender for me – I was so very tempted to make this one my favourite, especially as I love the spiralling effect down to into the centre of the cover.


This edition, published in August 2016 by Macmillan is… interesting. I envisage the conversation between the cover designer and publisher going something like this –
“What – you want me to do a redesign? But it’s awesome!”
“We want our own branding. Though if you can reference the original cover regarding colours…”
“So red and black, then.”
“Can I mix it up – add a couple more colours? Bring in another concept?”
“Nope. Just rebrand it with a fresh twist. Using the same colours and with a nod to the original design.”
And this is what they ended up with…


This Finnish edition, published by Tammi in January 2017, is another strong offering. I really like the orange and black, which also works well. The two figures are effective, with orange in profile and the other fractured version facing us. Again, a pleasing nod to the story – and again – I’m delighted at the lack of chatter on the cover, which gives us a chance to appreciate the full impact of the design. But which is your favourite?

19 responses »

  1. The one you chose is the cover of the book I read and I do like it, but I think my favourite is the Pan 2016 cover. I love the background, fits the story so well.

    • They are both great covers. I think they are all brilliant – except the Macmillan cover, which I don’t like at all. But Himself says it looks as though it’s been shredded and I suppose that COULD work. But it still looks like a derivative poor relation, as far as I’m concerned…

    • I’m not sure that my explanations have any validity whatsoever, Rae:)). Most of the time, they are more of a rant, than anything else! Glad you like the last one, though.

  2. The first one is definitely eye catching and I like it’s simplicity but I think I like the 2nd book a bit better. It’s not that more complicated and I like the color reversal.

    • Yes – I think it works really well, too. To be honest, I might have been unduly influenced by the first cover being on the book I read:)). I have a hunch that pulls quite a bit of weight.

  3. What a great choice of book – I love your favourite, I do love a maze type design and for some reason it makes me think of Flowers for Algernon (not because they look alike – just the maze idea).
    Lynn 😀

    • Yes… and Flowers for Algernon is a book I haven’t yet had the pleasure of reading – but I believe it’s something of a heartbreak, so I’m leaving it until things settle down a bit more:).

  4. A tough choice this time, indeed! I wonder if that shredded paper style would have been more effective if it hadn’t been black and red…anyhoo, that third offering’s a win in my book. The labyrinth style gets me every time:)

    • Yes – that was my main grizzle with the paper-shredded on, which was a real contender for Himself. If they were making a departure from the main design, why not use a different colour palette?

      And yes – I so very nearly went with the third option, it is such a classy cover.

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