Jan-Philipp Sendker's novel, The Art of Hearing Heartbeats, has been published all over the world. And with a title like that -- so stirring -- not to mention the complicated and tender story inside, the cover has proven to be a challenge that every art department has tackled differently. 


A little more about the book, from the publisher: "A poignant and inspirational love story set in Burma, The Art of Hearing Heartbeats spans the decades between the 1950s and the present. When a successful New York lawyer suddenly disappears without a trace, neither his wife nor his daughter Julia has any idea where he might be…until they find a love letter he wrote many years ago, to a Burmese woman they have never heard of. Intent on solving the mystery and coming to terms with her father’s past, Julia decides to travel to the village where the woman lived. There she uncovers a tale of unimaginable hardship, resilience, and passion that will reaffirm the reader’s belief in the power of love to move mountains."


Jan-Philipp is here to share his feelings about his US cover, and he's also showing covers from around the world. Here's the author:


"I had no ideas for the cover; they just showed me the cover hoping I would like it!


"My book has been translated into many different languages and I have seen many different covers. This one is my favorite -- by far.


"I only saw one version. I think that covers in general are overrated. My guess is that 80% are merely okay: they don't help to sell the book and don't prevent it from being sold. 10% are so good that the book sells because of it; 10% are so bad that people won't buy it.


"I feel that my cover is very beautiful.  It looks like a treasure I would like to hold in my hands, and own. So I think it belongs to the rare 10% that helps to sell a book."


Thanks, Jan-Philippe! The author also sent international images to share, so here are his book covers in, from left to right, Spanish, Croatian, German, Italian:




I think I agree with Jan-Philipp -- the US cover captures me the most, maybe because it's so abstract and so textured and rich. 


What do you guys think?


Melissa Walker is the author of six Young Adult novels, including the Violet trilogy, Lovestruck Summer, Small Town Sinners and the upcoming 

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