When it comes to books, I’m not afraid to admit that I’m entirely prematurely judgmental. If the cover of the book looks ugly or uninteresting I’ll pass it by no problem. It could be the greatest literary work of all time, but if it’s one of those old fashioned boring hard covers with just the title printed on the front, I’ll have no interest. If the cover is beautiful or flashy or unique though, well then that’ll get my attention.
I’ll never understand why some books have photos on the cover when they could just as easily have drawings or doodles or paintings on the cover. That’s so much more creative and interesting! Then there are the books that have been or are being made into movies and they use the movie poster on the cover; this is far too gimmicky for me when I could buy the version with the original (and usually much more visually alluring) cover. I totally judge books by their covers.
Case in point: when I was in high school, I was wandering through a book store and came across a book called The Hobbit. This was long before the Lord of the Rings movies started a Tolkien phenomenon. At this point I vaguely recalled hearing numerous times that this was some sort of classic, but I had no idea what the book was about, nor even any inclination of the genre. The only reason I was inclined to pause was for the cover.
The cover you guys… oh my gosh this cover! The soft cover, the gold runes, the huge gold title, and the dragon! And the book was in a large format, like an artist’s sketchbook, with pencil drawings illustrating the action throughout. I just knew it had to be a cool book, so I bought it without a second though. Turns out this was a 60th Anniversay Edition of the book… I was a little behind the times. Nevertheless I proceeded to gobble up this amazing story of Bilbo and the ring quicker than I can even remember, and thus began an obsession with Lord of the Rings I could never have predicted. All because of the cover.
Never ever underestimate the power of a great book cover.
So in looking at my book challenge for the year and seeing “a book you chose because of the cover”, I knew I would have no problem. I was perusing Chapters online a few months ago and came across The House of Silk by Anthony Horowitz. I clicked to learn more purely because it looked cool.
The colours and the geometrical patterns combined with the key definitely caught my eye. Then upon closer examination of the top I saw that this was a Sherlock Holmes story, so I bought it straight away. I’m big into murder mysteries and Sherlock Holmes has become a bit of thing for me since watching the BBC One television series, as well as the American version Elementary. Plus Tavis received a particularly engaging board game featuring the famous detective last Christmas, so I’ve been on a bit of a Holmes kick lately. This book was right up my alley.
This is a great Sherlock mystery complete with the seemingly-out-of-nowhere deductions and the excellent character development. What especially hooked me was when I sat down with the book and realized that Anthony Horowitz is not Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (duh), nevertheless the book reads just like I always thought a Sherlock Holmes book would read. I’ve never read an original Holmes story, but I definitely want to now.
This book hooked me from the start and didn’t let me go until the final page. I highly recommend this book for Sherlock Holmes fans, murder mystery fans, and/or those who simply enjoy an engaging plot in an easy-to-read format. Pick it because of the cover, love it because of the content.