Wednesday, April 5, 2017

I Judge Books By Their Covers: Lincoln in the Bardo

Hi, my name is Lindsay, and I judge books by their covers.

I read the much-hyped "Lincoln in the Bardo" by George Saunders a couple weeks ago, and I haven't yet written my review (and maybe won't ever get around to it) because I haven't quite sorted out my feelings about the book. On the one hand, I totally appreciated the VERY unique and creative format once I finally got used to it, and the story was interesting, but I was sorta left wondering just what I was supposed to get out of it. Definitely a different kind of book, and really a reading experience. But would I recommend it? I'm not entirely sure. What I can talk about with some authority, though, is which cover I like better!

U.S. // U.K.
Holy cow, I think we have one of the rare instances in which I actually like the U.S. cover better than the British one! I often gravitate toward botanical covers, and I don't dislike the U.K. version, but I do find the bright green to be slightly incongruous with the sepia portrait of Willie Lincoln. It's like it's both too busy and too bland at the same time: the tilted "Lincoln" and the vines going every which way make it look a bit messy, but then nothing really catches the eye either. I also don't love the mix of serif and sans-serif fonts here. (I will say, I have a feeling this one might be better-looking in person than it is on the screen.)

On the other hand, the U.S. cover is much more visually appealing to me. I like the teal tones and the eye-catching white handwriting-style font, which is a bit more clean-looking than the U.K. font. The only problem I have is that the cover gives you no idea whatsoever what the book is about. What is that scene, even? It sure doesn't look like a cemetery in Washington, D.C. However, on aesthetics alone, I'd definitely be more likely to pick up the U.S. book.

Do tell: which cover do you prefer?


  1. I'm with you, I actually like the US cover as well and that's an oddity because the UK ones are usually much better. I've seen some mixed reviews on this book and don't really think it's for me. I'll be passing but look forward to your review if you ever decide to post one.

  2. I like the US cover way more than the UK version. The UK version doesn't do anything for me and I would so pass it up.

  3. I agree. The US cover just has so much more color. White with a few wispy branches definitely doesn't do it for me. Also, I loved Tenth of December but somehow can't get interested enough in this novel to read it.


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