Book Trailer for Pilikia

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

You can judge a book by its cover

A discussion on another blog about book covers got me thinking about what I consider the golden age of paperbacks when books were sold in drug stores and the covers were scandalous. I became hooked on genre fiction, sci-fi, mysteries, and thrillers in high school. My school was forty minutes away by school bus, an hour and a half by public bus service, which I used two or three days a week. The public bus required a transfer at a depot. If I missed my connection, I had at least a twenty-minute wait for the next one. I always hoped I'd miss the connection because there was a Katz Drugstore at the depot with rack after rack of paperbacks and I could spend some very happy minutes looking through them.

The primary market had to be men because the books were always near the liquor and tobacco. There were books by Mickey Spillane, Richard S. Prather, John D. MacDonald, Ian Fleming and hundreds of other authors. And the women on the covers. How could you not become addicted to reading?

The publisher of Pilikia Is My Business asked my input on the cover. That's something that doesn't happen to most artists. Remembering all those great covers from high school, I suggested cars, guns and cleavage. Well, I got the car.

Here are some websites where you can find vinatage paperback covers. If I have any input on the cover of The Law of the Splintered Paddle, I'm going to pull some of these covers out and say, "Just like this, please."

The sites: Vintage Paperbacks and Good Girl Art.

Maybe I'll get a cover like the one on this post. It has all the elements I want, a beautiful woman, a tropical waterfall. So what if that's not what the story is about?


  1. Dana Fredsti said...

    I love these old covers. There was a great art show in L.A a few years ago featuring the cover art on all the old men's magazines, like True Adventure and the rest. I loved 'em.

  2. Helen Ginger said...

    Why not, Mark? Plenty of romance novels have scantily clad men on their covers!