Alex Flinn has shared Cover Stories for a couple of her books, including A Kiss in Time and Beastly (which was made into a major motion picture in the spring), and now she's here to tell the story of another of her re-imagined fairy tales, Cloaked. Here's Alex:


"Cloaked is a story based upon several fairy tales, most obviously The Frog Prince and The Shoemaker and the Elves. The main character works in a shoe repair but dreams of designing shoes like Manolo Blahnik.

So, my original thought was something with a frog and a glamorous shoe. I was thinking a combination of the covers of Chasing Harry Winston and The Boyfriend List (Ruby Oliver Quartet Series #1)  (below), only with a real frog. 


"I made that suggestion, but ultimately, the folks at my publisher felt that a cover with a frog on it might look too much like a middle grade novel, and they wanted to concentrate more on the romance element and, also, do a cover that tied to my other two fairy tale novels, Beastly (which has a rose on the cover) and A Kiss in Time (which has a sort of reverse-colored poppy).



"The original cover I saw was very beautiful. It had a picture of an orchid on it (below right). Unfortunately, it had little to do with the content of my book. I suggested that if it was going to be a flower, it should be a more obviously Floridian flower, such as a hibiscus. They did a new cover with a hibiscus and let me choose the one I preferred. It's similar because it's a white cover with a red or pink flower, but I think this cover shows more about where the story takes place and, as I said, doesn't seem as pretty or delicate. It suggests the story better. It's a painting or something done on a computer, like the other two covers. 


"If this book was my only book, this is not the cover I would have chosen for it. I understand about the frog, but I might have chosen something about the cloak that gives the book its title. However, I do appreciate that the publisher wanted to tie this cover in to my other two fairy tale books, so readers would recognize that this was one of my novels and similar to the other two. I'm glad if it will help readers to find the book. I've always wanted to have a 'brand.'"


Thanks, Alex! I do love the branding of the three novels together -- there is certainly a cohesive look. I'm also a fan of the flowers and the thorny font. There will be a newly designed paperback for 2012, so we'll see how it changes!


What do you guys think?


PS-A little bit of trivia: The German version of Cloaked, which was retitled Kissed, does have a frog on the cover (left)!

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Melissa Walker is the author of five Young Adult novels, including the Violet trilogy, Lovestruck Summer and the just-published Small Town Sinners. She is co-creator of the popular teen newsletter I Heart Daily and the awkward-stage blog Before You Were Hot, as well as the blogger for Her author blog, where Cover Stories originated, is

0 Kudos
by CH-3_ on ‎08-30-2011 04:52 PM

I understand why the publishers wanted the flower cover; it's kind of her trademark. It lets people know who the author is right away.

by Fricka on ‎09-02-2011 04:02 PM

I'm always wondering how much imput an author has towards the cover art of his/her books. While I do understand to a certain extent why the editors wanted a flower on the cover of Flinn's book, I don't see why a compromise couldn't have been arranged. After all, children aren't the only ones who enjoy reading fairy tales. Also, why couldn't a frog been on the cover, as per Alex's thought? The fact that a German publisher DID put a frog on its cover shows that it could have been done! The statement that using a frog would make the cover look like a "middle grade novel" is rather lame, IMHO. No reason why a frog couldn't have been given an art deco or similar treatment to clarify the book's intended audience.

Oh, and by the way, after reading about Alex Flinn's books here, I put in a request for her latest from my local library. Guess where it's kept? In the YA section! ( of course, there is a difference between YA and middle grade, I guess, but really--I still fail to see why the editors and artists didn't make more of an effort to realize Flinn's vision)


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