Cover help and a Free Book Giveaway

I’m desperately in need of cover help.
Basically, I can’t decide between two different covers for the Christmas book that I’m about to republish. I’ve revised and extended it and I want it to be right. So I’m asking for advice here.

Please tell me which cover you think I should choose.

And, as a thank you, one lucky commenter, chosen at random, will receive a free copy of the book, whether the cover they choose turns out to be the final cover or not. [Competition now closed]

Context for cover help: what the book is about

The story was originally published as part of the Libertà anthology, I Hate Christmas. But, on re-reading it, I realised it needed more, especially in the timeslip section. So I’ve added quite a lot of words. Chapters even 😉

And I’ve given it a new title, too. It used to be One Christmas Tree To Go. Now, it’s
To a Blissful Christmas Reunion.

Since the hero is called Gabriel Bliss, I think that fits rather well. I hope you agree and you’ll forgive what might be a pretty awful pun. Lucy, the heroine, is certainly hoping for a blissful Christmas reunion. But there seem to be a lot of hurdles in the ball on Christmas tree branch

In order to decide which cover fits, you’ll need to know what it’s about.
So here’s a short introduction:

Lucy Cairns and Gabriel Bliss were close once. But when Gabe returns after years away and rents land from Lucy’s millionaire father for a tree nursery, their relationship is far from blissful. Especially in the run-up to Christmas.

Christmas trees are a cash crop for Gabe’s struggling nursery, even though he hates Christmas. Lucy, too, has painful memories of the festive season, but she needs Gabe’s help to find the perfect tree for the manor house and the business guests who will be arriving on Christmas Eve. The pair are forced to do business together.

Gabe remains professional and distant. His time away has changed him, though he won’t say why. He refuses to get close to Lucy, insisting there’s too much of a gulf between the millionaire’s daughter and a dirty-fingered son of the soil like him. But then he chances on a 19th century image of Lucy’s manor house with the master and mistress standing proudly outside the main door.

And that married couple look exactly like Gabe and Lucy…

So, the cover help is to choose between these two:


Let’s call them Cover A Yellow Title (on the left), and Cover B White Title (on the right).

My question to you, dear readers, is which one do you prefer? You don’t have to give reasons. In fact, it may be better if you just go with your instant reaction. That’s what readers do in bookshops, after all, and when looking a book covers online.

So please tell me which immediately appeals. Is it Lucy with a pretty and confident smile in Cover A with the yellow title? Or thoughtful (possibly mischievous?) Lucy in Cover B with the white title.

Gift of a dedicationGiveaway: what and when

Comments left until midnight on Tuesday 30th August will be entered.

On Wednesday 31st August, I’ll pick one comment at random from all those that have been left here on the blog. That lucky winner will receive the book as soon as I have copies (which will be very soon, I hope). In addition to the print book, the prize pack will also include a Libertà mini notebook and some rather nice chocolate. What’s not to like?

The winner will be announced on Wednesday here on this blog.

So please do leave a comment. You never know, you might be the winner.
Someone has to win the goodies, don’t they?

POSTSCRIPT: And the winner is…

Thank you to all those who left a comment, especially those who gave me advice on the covers. That was helpful. The voting was pretty even—12 votes for the yellow cover and 10 for the white one. I decided to go with the yellow cover and I’ve pasted in the final version below, so that you can see it.Cover of To a Blissful Christmas Reunion by Joanna Maitland

The winner of the goodies, chosen at random from all those who commented, is
Ronwyn Proctor (who, as it happens, preferred the white cover that I’m not using). Ronwyn’s goodies will be on the way to her as soon as my print copies
of the book appear which may take a couple of weeks.
Congratulations, Ronwyn. Enjoy your prize.

Joanna Maitland authorfrom Joanna

48 thoughts on “Cover help and a Free Book Giveaway

  1. Margaret

    So Joanna, If I have to choose, I’ll go with the yellow, though I think the “timeslip romance” tag on the bottom should not include the yellow background. That said, I thought the blue ornament on the pine tree was one of the choices, and I LOVED that – it just evokes a quiet, Christmas beauty! Any chance you might change your mind??! The story itself sounds wonderful, and I can’t wait to read it.

    1. Joanna Post author

      Thanks so much, Margaret. The background on the “timeslip” tag is needed to make it easy to read but I get the point. I like the blue ornament too but it’s difficult to twin it with a model so it probably won’t make the cut.

  2. Catherine Jones

    I like the yellow title. I prefer the eye contact with the heroine – I find her more engaging. But they’re both good, TBH.

  3. Jan+Jones

    Cover B for me, with the heroine blowing on her drink to cool it and dreaming of good things to come. It’s full of comfort and hope.

  4. Louise Allen

    Cover A for me. I think the overall composition is better and there’s something about the shape of the model’s head in B that is unsettling – it looks oddly elongated.

  5. Alison May

    I prefer the image on Cover A Yellow, but the title placement looks a bit squashed in to one side. Can you move the woman down to make space for the title to be full width? If not, then I think I’d go for B (poss with the title in a colour rather than white) as the layout feels cleaner and more professional and easier to read.

    1. Joanna Post author

      Thanks, Alison. A very thoughtful reply though I’m not sure your suggestion for A would work. Shall think on…

      1. Joanna Post author

        Have looked again re Alison’s comment and No, I can’t move the model down because the original image has her hat cut off at the top. I knew I had a reason for putting her where she is, but I’d forgotten what it was. Anno domini, I fear…

  6. Ronwyn Proctor

    Cover B white writing appeals to me more, not too keen on the models expression in Cover A. But my first preference would be for the blue ornament.

  7. amy linderman

    the white! i want to know what she is thinking. she looks like she has a plan evolving

  8. Joanna Post author

    So far, I reckon we have 9 votes for the yellow cover A, and 7 votes for the white cover B. Anyone else want to have a say?

  9. lizharriswriter

    Cover A, the yellow lettering. The girl looks som pleased with herself and the world generally that I’m sure that something will go wrong, and I’d like to know what that something is!

    1. Joanna Post author

      There are worse typos, Liz. You could have written “pissed” instead of “pleased” 😉 And yes, you’re right. Something is going to go wrong. In spades.

  10. Joanna Toye

    Gut reaction was the yellow, (eye contact) then I read the blurb and wavered – but I’m back on the yellow now. To be picky (you did ask!) I know yellow is standout, I just don’t find it very Xmassy, Have you considered red or turquoise (also picking up the lights on the tree behind)? Good luck with the book, whatever!

    1. Joanna Post author

      I did actually try turquoise, Joanna, but that blurry Christmas tree is difficult and the turquoise didn’t show up well enough. So I went back to the yellow. Red doesn’t work well enough either. But thanks for taking the trouble to comment and advise.

  11. Anne Harvey

    Definitely cover A for me, she hasa mischievous look in her eye and I think Gabe would go for that! Sounds a wonderful book and I’d love to read it.

    1. Joanna Post author

      Thanks, Anne. I also think she’s got a twinkle. I’ll be republishing the ebook in September, I think, but I’m not sure how soon the print copies will be available.

    1. Joanna Post author

      For some reason, Sandra, this comment came through twice. (And no, you don’t get two chances in the prize draw. Sorry) I didn’t think the B heroine was looking at the hero, but she may be. I thought she was pensive and possibly plotting. She does have to do that, because Gabe is not being exactly cooperative…

    1. Joanna Post author

      Thanks, Kathleen. Each to her own, eh? It’s impossible to produce a cover that everyone likes but so far, you’re in the minority, Yellow 12 White 10. Still pretty evenly balanced so it looks like I’ll have to decide for myself.

Comments are closed.