Sunday, August 8, 2010
One of my followers wrote me about a complaint she had regarding some of the historical romance covers. I decided to share her thought and see what you think.
Covers, as a topic of conversation among romance readers, is not a new one. The recent (last 7 years or so) trend of showing only a body without a head, has been discussed numerous times on many blog sites. And the old “clinch” covers are, thankfully, far and few between now. But what this follower takes issue with is the tastefully done historical cover where the hero, heroine, or both is standing proudly against all odds. They appear beautiful, determined, heroic, and . . . modern?
Yes, modern as in present day. I would have to agree. I have seen some of these covers and despite the period costume, there is something too modern about the facial features. Now, who is to say that a particular face hasn’t been around the human race for eons and could very well be historically accurate? But sometimes historically accurate is not enough. If I’m reading a medieval romance and I come across the “f” word, it immediately throws me out of the period. That’s not to say the word did not exist back then because actually it did, but to today’s reader it is a contemporary word.
So, I think perhaps this follower has a point. She said when she sees historical romance covers with modern faces she just can’t get past it and buys a different book. When writers create fiction, their first duty is to suspend your disbelief. If the cover has one thinking “Macy’s” instead of “village market day,” the suspension fails.
Have you ever noticed a historical romance cover with a modern face? Has it bothered you or made you think twice? We’d be interested to know.