It’s been a very long time since I did a UK v. US book cover post, but the contrast between these covers grabbed my attention.
So, Connie Willis’s CROSSTALK – UK cover on the left, US on the right.
I’d seen the US cover around previously, and thought it was an interesting choice for an SF book; it reminded me of YA romance (for instance, Julie Cross’s TEMPEST) so my guess was that the publisher was trying to widen the audience for this book. The UK cover, on the other hand, comes across as much more retro and adult, and if I’d seen this in the New Releases section of the bookstore, I’m not sure I’d have connected it with SF if it wasn’t for Connie Willis’s name.
Even the back cover copy gives out different vibes – here’s the UK copy:
Briddey is about to get exactly what she thinks she wants . . .
Briddey is a high-powered exec in the mobile phone industry, overseeing new products from concept (‘anything to beat the new apple phone’) to delivery. And she works with her wonderful partner, Trent. They’ve been together for six magical weeks, in a whirlwind of flowers, dinners, laughter and now comes the icing on the cake: not a weekend away or a proposal but something even better. An EDD. A procedure which will let them sense each other’s feelings. Trent doesn’t just want to tell her how much he loves her – he wants her to feel it.
The trouble is, Briddey can’t breathe a word of it to anyone (difficult, when the wholeoffice is guessing) until she’s had two minutes to call her family. And they’re hounding her about the latest family drama.
The race is on: not just for new, cutting-edge technology, but also for a shred of privacy in a public world and – for Briddey – a chance for love at the heart of it all.
And then the US version:
In the not-too-distant future, a simple outpatient procedure to increase empathy between romantic partners has become all the rage. And Briddey Flannigan is delighted when her boyfriend, Trent, suggests undergoing the operation prior to a marriage proposal—to enjoy better emotional connection and a perfect relationship with complete communication and understanding. But things don’t quite work out as planned, and Briddey finds herself connected to someone else entirely—in a way far beyond what she signed up for.
It is almost more than she can handle—especially when the stress of managing her all-too-eager-to-communicate-at-all-times family is already burdening her brain. But that’s only the beginning. As things go from bad to worse, she begins to see the dark side of too much information, and to realize that love—and communication—are far more complicated than she ever imagined.
The UK version feels a bit chicklit (SF-style) to me, while the US one reads both younger and more romance-y.
What do you think?
(I should say that the UK cover came to my attention because of a Goodreads giveaway email – it’s here if you’re interested in entering, UK-only though).