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The 'look' of a book

(23 Posts)
babybythesea Mon 29-Jan-18 22:04:10

I started a new book tonight. The second in the Miss Peregrines Home for Peculiar Children series.
I really enjoyed the first one and wanted to read this one before I'd left it so long between them that I couldn't remember what happened. I was choosing between this one, The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery, and Saplings by Noel Streatfeild.

I was wandering around with the book in hand, earlier this evening, making a cup of tea, when it struck me that one reason I picked this book over the other two is that I LOVE the style of the book. Slightly shiny pages, black pages mixed in with white, the black and white photography on the front.... it's not that I'm necessarily expecting the story to be loads better but I think this book has a gorgeous and unusual feel to it.

Does anyone else feel like this, or am I odd? I also love a big chunky hardback. Love the feel of it in my hands although it's not at all convenient for taking out of the house. (I keep my kindle in my handbag - always have emergency reading to hand just in case! A hardback doesn't suit this so well!!)

Sometimes I will take books off the shelf, read the back, and put them back. Not because I'm picking a new book to read, but just because some books have that allure which compels me to pick them up. I'm starting to sound one sandwich short of a picnic to myself now. Do you do this too, or am I on my own here??

SnapesTears Thu 01-Feb-18 23:05:06

You sound absolutely normal and sane to me.

I often get drawn to books for their aesthetic appeal alone. It could be unreadable baloney inside but if it appeals to my senses I will zone in on it.

Tessliketrees Thu 01-Feb-18 23:44:05

I hardly buy print books anymore but when I did I would often buy them in threes and fours. I then used to get them home and take them out and hold all three, pile them up different ways, place them next to each other etc etc. Basically play with them and look at them for about 10/15 minutes.

I never realised how bizarre it was until the DH commented on it.

I felt like a freak typing that but I am going to hold my head up and post it anyway.

PaperdollCartoon Thu 01-Feb-18 23:47:29

I always judge a book by it’s cover. I still love ‘real’ books and with so many in the shop something has to draw me in. I like the smooth matte finish on them.

SatsukiKusakabe Fri 02-Feb-18 12:43:13

I read a lot on the Kindle now but I still buy a book in proper form if I liked the content first and foremost, but also just to own a pretty thing. The book I’m reading now is from the library, and I’m the first person to take it out, which is a pleasure in itself. It has the most beautiful cover and I shall miss it when it goes back. The one I recently read was a Persephone classic and it had a painting on the cover and a contemporary fabric print on the inside; gorgeous.

I love my Kindle but could never give up real books. Almost my entire collection of Jane Austen was picked up second hand as a teenager, and each one recalls a different time and place and I love the mismatch look of them all together.

LittleTinyPig Fri 02-Feb-18 12:45:18

Definitely the look of a book affects how I feel about it. I think one of the reasons The Essex Serpent did so well was because of its gorgeous cover.

SwanVests Fri 02-Feb-18 12:45:24

I judge books by their cover all the time. I don’t often pick a dud when I’ve chosen it just for its prettiness.

SatsukiKusakabe Fri 02-Feb-18 12:45:27

Look at it! grin

SatsukiKusakabe Fri 02-Feb-18 12:46:48

Yes Essex Serpent was lovely, beautiful inside and out.

SwanVests Fri 02-Feb-18 12:48:16

The Selected Works of TS Spivet is one I chose recently for its cover, it’s lovely.

highinthesky Fri 02-Feb-18 12:49:42

Pachinko looks good - would you recommend it?

moonlight1705 Fri 02-Feb-18 12:53:30

I bought a book the other day because it had red edges (and by an author I like).

I love going around a bookshop and just letting my hand slide over the books on the tables, feeling the smoothness or the embossing blush

Spartacunt Fri 02-Feb-18 13:02:48

I'm reading Pachinko too and chose it because (mainly) of it's beautiful cover. It's a fabulous read as well it turns out!

SatsukiKusakabe Fri 02-Feb-18 13:16:12

I’m about 200 pages in (just under half way) and really enjoying it so far. It covers the Japanese occupation of Korea and the struggles of a Korean family trying to make a life in Japan prior to the Second World War. It centres mainly on the relationships and every day lives of the people, but the history is woven through and is very illuminating. It started quietly and is written with simplicity, but I soon became drawn into the story and characters.

babybythesea Fri 02-Feb-18 14:03:35

No-one answered for a few days, and I thought my weirdness was confirmed. Thank you for either proving me not weird, or at the very least sharing my little weird corner with me!
I do the arranging books thing too, when you've bought new ones. It's like trying on new clothes you've just bought but far, far more fun! You can't read them all immediately so you play with them for a bit.

Pachinko is a stunning book. And sounds really interesting. Another one for the wish list.

I also realised that I take books off my shelf, that I really want to read but can't start just yet because I need to finish something else first. I pick them up and just carry them round for a bit, usually leave them somewhere else for a day or two, and then put them back. It's a sort of anticipation I think.

Piggywaspushed Sat 03-Feb-18 18:15:54

This is exactly why I bought An Almond For a Parrot to subsequently discover it is basically soft porn ! Historical soft porn.

The picture of the book doesn't begin to show the lovely texture of the cover : it really is delightful to hold. Fnarrrr

essietopcoat Sat 03-Feb-18 19:04:06

They say you shouldn't judge a book by its cover but actually, you can. I've been given a few books for christmas and I really feel i can tell they're going to be crap by their covers.

Equally i bought a used copy of an Anne Tyler book - and was bitterly disappointed to find out that it isn't the latest edition as i really like that style of cover and font.

UnimaginativeUsername Sat 03-Feb-18 19:09:28

You can’t always tell. I was stuck in a train station for a few hours once and decided to buy a book in a tiny WH Smith. From the few books available I chose the one I thought would be least awful (the raven boys by Maggie stiefvater), but it turned out to be brilliant, despite the cover and the blurb that wanted to pretend it was a twilight-style paranormal romance. So I’m glad that I didn’t judge that book by its cover.

Nearlyadoctor Sat 03-Feb-18 19:17:57

Not weird at all, I can remember getting my first duvet and cover when I was eight years old. My room was pale blue with matching curtains and duvet cover in white with tiny blue flowers. I choose a hardback copy of Peter Pan with a bluey lilac cover from the school library so it matched and then placed it carefully at an angle on my bed because it looked nice.

And you think your odd!! I never even read the book. grin

idea888 Wed 14-Feb-18 20:06:56

I heard an interesting discussion on the radio recently about book design and how you CAN judge a book by its cover these days. There is so much thought put into the design of covers and appealing to the kind of person who reads that type of book. Having said that, I didn't particularly like The Essex Serpent, but loved the cover.

giddyupnow Wed 14-Feb-18 20:49:50

The Blue Castle is brill, mind.

FabiantheFish Sat 17-Feb-18 10:05:05

I was going to say the same as idea. I read an article recently that said you should judge a book by its cover.
However I brought Hiddensee as the cover really caught my eye in a bookshop, and although I loved the cover I was disappointed with the story inside.

TeaMeBasil Sat 17-Feb-18 10:22:37

Fabian, that book is gorgeous!

I'm exactly the same Op, I have books on my shelves I've bought & not yet read (for a couple of years blush) just because I had to have them, they look so good! The feel & look of a book can be so attractive - I felt the same about the Miss Peregrine book, just loved the style!

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