You CAN judge a book by it’s cover… well, sometimes.

A Gracious Plenty — book coverI often pick up a book because I like it’s cover. Okay, very often.  I am a designer, it’s what I do. I like to mull over why they put that there, used that font/image/whatever. I like to wonder at the appeal of the appeal of a thing. Think about what made me pick up this one and skip over that other one. Then I might even read the book.

I picked up one of my all-time favourite books EVER because of its cover. A Gracious Plenty, found in the bargain bin out the front of the bookstore. Not just any bin. It was on the trolley of books they can’t even see from the sales counter, indicating they think they don’t even care if you steal it. TWO DOLLARS.  I still can’t believe. it. The wording of the title is beautiful, plus with my gravestone fascination, I was sold. After reading this book I read all the other books Sheri Reynolds wrote.  I liked them, they were a little weird and I laughed so much at some of them.  I didn’t love them as much as this one though.

The old age of El Magnifico — book coverOf course cover shopping doesn’t always work. For example, take The old age of El Magnifico. Please, take it. I picked it up a dozen times and when they finally stuck the 50% off sticker on it I snapped it up. If I had once, during all those times of looking at it longingly, read any of it, I could have saved myself the cash. Turns out the old cat had cancer in its leg so they lopped it off.  A front leg and his shoulder. He was FOURTEEN YEARS OLD. I just thought that was mean. The cat kept forgetting its leg was gone and trying to leap things and run down the stairs. A You Tube maybe, a whole book?  No.

Here are a few of my other favourites. No, not all found in the bin.


Wildflower — book cover

Oh yeah, my bargain bin shopping sometimes ends in complete disaster.  Once I got about two chapters in and just went “Life’s too short”. I cut the cover off and threw the book away.  Sacrilege?  Maybe. It was a horrible book hidden behind a pretty cool cover. I would show it to you RIGHT NOW but, um … can’t find it.  Might have to write a post on “Organisational skills and how to get them”.

I picked this one up five or six times before actually deciding to buy it.  I spent a very long time trying to work out just how abnormally long this woman’s legs were.  She was gorgeous. Her story is sad. Illness, philandering husband she couldn’t get out of her system, murder. And what makes it worse—it’s a true story.

In my digging around in the cupboard looking for my favourites I found these. I have kept them from when I was a little kid. Just goes to show throwing EVERYTHING away to be über clean and tidy is denying yourself the simple pleasure of revisiting something you loved as a kid.  This afternoon I shall  kick back and read The Hobbit-pages-25-to-28-missing. I read it so much as a kid they fell out. Doesn’t matter, I know it by heart. Happy book-loving people! : )

Puffin Joke Book, Brighty of the Grand Canyon, The Hobbit — old book covers

About gillianloves

I decided there was not enough laughing in my life so I set to and started to design greeting cards in addition to my other design work. I'm happy to make people smile and to show that giving something really good takes as little effort as sending something pretty ordinary. I fully believe that if you can laugh about it someday you may as well laugh about it today. And also that we are just about as happy as we try to be. But you should know, Pollyanna I'm not. Even I might want to slap her after a day or so.
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6 Responses to You CAN judge a book by it’s cover… well, sometimes.

  1. Oh i just love your book reviews. I am not a reader so you’ve saved me time & money on that cat book. Who amputates the leg of a cat who is already in old age?? Ethics vet, or did it pay for his last holiday?? Tractors, really, a great funny read, i’ll have to trust you on that. When i saw the cover of the ‘great life & ultimately death in Africa’ i thought it was one of your funny cards in a ‘here’s to a fanastic life which you eventually die from’ kind of way. Love Posie

    • gillianloves says:

      Poor kitty. I agree, there is worse things than being gently shuffled off.

      On the book with the lady and elephant, YES! I think that’s why I picked it up… because it looked a bit like one of my cards. I am a little sad I don’t have a pic like that to play with. *pouts* I hated the book though. The first half was good then it all turned to custard when husband went off the rails. I thought she should have hit him with divorce papers (and her land rover).

  2. lampshadehat says:

    there is one book that i really wish i’d kept from my kiddiehood –
    very strange childrens book about a captain of a ship in the merchant navy and his green parrot. no idea about the title or anything so very difficult to try and track down.
    still remember the pictures vividly though.

  3. Cindi aka oldblackcatboo says:

    crap crap CRAP!!!!!
    Now I have an OVERWHELMING desire to drive to Borders!
    I am just the same, the covers get me every time!
    I love gravestones and baby elephants so I would probably have grabbed the same books.
    As for the kitty……I work at a vet clinic, and that kind of situation is what rips my heart out. I go crazy that pet owners only think about THEIR loss and THEIR pain rather than the poor animal that they claim to love so dearly. I’m just glad they aren’t MY family. and then…….the Veterinarian that actually does it. I get upset wondering if he thinks he is God and can actually SAVE the pet or…………is it to pay on of HIS bills???? Oops, sorry I have to climb off my soapbox now!

    • gillianloves says:

      You get up on your box any old time you like! I used to work at a vet clinic too. It is sad isn’t it that some of the pets have to go through too much. It’s hard to let them go but it’s part of the deal I reckon. : )

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