Do you dig these covers?

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Oct 14, 2015
Houston, TX
I was browsing an entertainment blog that I read and came across a post (read: advertisement) about new scifi book covers from Penguin Galaxy. These book covers are supposed to be stylish (and part of a specific set), but I'm not sure how I feel about them. (I'm leaning towards dislike, but I'm currently trapped in the realm of ambivalent right now)

Here's the link:

I want to hear how everyone else feels about the covers. Do you like them? Are they too much?

And that brings up another question (that I know we've probably talked about before): what makes a good book cover? And what are some of your favorite covers?
As someone who works on websites and social media as part of the day job my initial reaction is around accessibility. In case anyone doesn't know what that means - it is the readability of any medium by someone with visual impairment. No way would those covers pass an accessibility test. My vision is fine, yet I found them difficult to understand.

Quite simply, they are over designed. They are, however, distinctive. So I can see why there would be some arguments to keep them for their visual aspects rather than their communicative ones.
Overfussy, deserving smacked wrists, rather than pats on the head for the artist/ designer and whoever signed off on approving them as being fitting for a book cover.

Surely, any book cover should act as a lure to draw the reader in, not as a puzzle making them confused.
If I can't make out the title, I don't like the cover. It's sort of a minimum requirement. I think the "Space Odyssey" is the most preposterous of the whole bunch.
I'm getting longsighted and I find them hard to read. Once I get my eye in, they're a neon sign idea, minus the colours. The Once and Future King is legible enough, but lacks magic. Maybe it's just the lack of pictures.

once and future king.jpg
All of the above ...

A cover should attract, not repel, a reader. If one has to struggle to read the font, then it's an out and out failure.

Back to the drawing board guys.
A curious fine line though. When is any image striking and inviting, and when is it cheap and nasty?

Gut instincts, for me, I think, but what about everyone else?
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