Friday, April 22, 2011

Cover Critique: Ellora's Cave Special Part 1

Let me preface this post by saying that my critiques of these covers are in no way, shape or form a reflection on the author, the content or the publisher. I know the authors have very little, if any, control over the design. These are strictly my thoughts meant simply to be humorous and not insulting.

I just want to reiterate, before we all dissolve into fits of giggles, that this post is not meant to disrespect Ellora's Cave or their authors. That being said, perusing their website yesterday in search of material was perhaps the greatest day of my life. It was a veritable buffet of awesomeness just begging for my brand of snark, with page after page of spectacularly brilliant covers. Now, not all of their covers are laughable, some of them are actually quite good (perhaps I'll pull some samples of those for you next week) which only makes the bad ones even worse as it's very clear they are capable of much better. This is going to be a 3 week special edition wherein I feature multiple covers because, really, there's just too much good stuff to go one at a time. I hope you all enjoy!


Huh. I'm not going to make a joke about our demon here being horny. I'm not. That would be lame and childish. Instead, I'm going to discuss, in all seriousness, the size of his horns. Much less childish. I think the naked chest clearly tells us that this is a romance novel and we can expect many a sexy moment in between these pages, knowing full well the gentlemen (or demons as the case may be) in these stories are always extraordinarily well-endowed, have the stamina of a marathon runner, and possess the sexual prowess of a god. Good for them. So I guess my question here would be this: why, assuming he's a lover of epic proportions, would they give him such tiny, stunted, and unfortunately curved horns? It makes me wonder if perhaps other parts follow suit. Pity.

Shouldn't he have huge, thick, magnificently masculine horns? Horns that are a testament to his unparalleled skill in the bedroom and make our eyes shift south as we long for maybe just a peek at what's hidden by the title? Maybe that's just me though. I have to say I'm not impressed with his pinky finger sized protrusions, so he can keep his kiss and everything else that goes along with it until he grows a few more inches. Just saying.


Is it me, or does he seem intensely fascinated by what's happening in his pants? He looks as though he's not quite sure what's going to be revealed when he slides that denim those last few inches, and I'm pretty sure if he's concerned about what's going on with his manly bits, then I definitely want no part of them.

Shouldn't he be looking at us? Trying to seduce us with his eyes as he teases us with the low-slung unzipped jeans? I wonder if this is how things play out in the bedroom as well–his partner does all the work while he simply admires his junk, of which he has undoubtedly named something hyper-masculine. Aw, yeah. Good times to be had by all I think.

I do have to give the designer props on the text placement though. The "s" in jewels and "l" in Nile hit just the right spot don't they? Right in his crotch amidst the goods that have him so enthralled. Well done indeed.


People, where has his neck gone? He's like a little naked turtle. I feel like this head and this body are not the same person, and for a reason I cannot fathom, they have photoshopped a head on an already existing shirtless body. He's got his brows raised and forehead crinkled as though he's as confused about how he came to be in this situation as we are. It's okay my friend, we feel your pain, you are not alone in this.

If we were to suspend belief for a moment and pretend this head and body match, it almost seems as though he's ducking to fit his head on the cover before the Ellora's Cave Twilight bar crops it right off. We also have the author's name trying to make its way into his ear, leaving this poor guy with hardly any room at all so it's no wonder he's out of sorts.

I think he's supposed to be some sort of shifter, though if he's not, he's going to want to have the weird dark patches on his arm looked at by a specialist. His lower arm looks practically gangrenous, like it could rot off at any moment. It also appears as though there is some sort of wood paneled wall behind him to suggests he's indoors, but right around his nonexistent neck are strange patches of grass. Fur? Is he a chia pet? So, just to sum up, he's a neck-less naked man suffering from gangrene while random parts of his body sprout grass-like fur. Glorious, just glorious.

Have a great weekend everyone and stay tuned next week for part 2 !


  1. *giggles insanely* I don't read adult fiction, but I absolutely adore these posts. You're hysterical :)

  2. That devil cover is one of the greatest pieces of art I've ever seen. In fact, it may be my next tattoo.

    The one with the guy pulling his pants down reminds me of every magazine I see in my friend Shawn's bathroom...if you know what I mean.

    The last one is just a caricature. It's like that Wilson brother from Zoolander. And I don't like visible veins in anyone's arms. Madonna and weightlifting magazines ruined it for me.


  3. LOL! These are truly awful. If these covers are supposed to make me feel all tingly...they did just the opposite. Especially that first one. He kind of looks like a bat! And those horns are creepy. Yes, what is going on with the second guy. The text placement....bravo! Happy Friday!

  4. Those horns are absolutely creepy! In fact all of the covers are making me giggle like crazy :D
    I love this feature! Thank you, Jenny!

  5. OMG LOL *laughing hysterically* seriously, these are real covers? OMG!

  6. When I saw the first cover I laughed so hard! I mean really, could it look anymore fake! He so does not look like a sexy demon! LOL these covers are seriously crazy!

  7. Love the baby horns. Also wonder why a series entitled Cavemen features a clean, buff guy in jeans. Didn't think cavemen were that stylish. And the "Vision Controller" title makes me imagine a sexy, tough air traffic controller, which I think is an oxymoron.

  8. #1) Ok could you sleep with that guy--I mean I would worry about breaking those flimsy horns LOL Just WOW!

    #2) Before I even read your comment my thought was "I wonder if this is a 1 person romance--he is in "love" with himself"---he does seem rather fascinated.

    #3) What is that game-- Whack a Mole? That is what looks like happened to him.

  9. Laughing... Laughing... Laughing.

    Jewels of the Nile?! I mean, really?

  10. I love these posts. Thanks for the smiles.

  11. Riv - Thank you, I do try:)

    Gwen - I think the demon cover is magnificent really, absolutely something you should tattoo on your body for ever and ever;)

    Julie - I had so much fun on their site I can't even explain it to you. Best. Day. Ever.

    Misha - Glad you enjoyed, if something makes me giggle like a little girl, I like to share it with others:)

    Slowest - They are, and they are AWESOME:)

    Savy - His horns are ridiculous. Why did they do that to him? Poor guy.

    Alison - They're my favorite part. Without them, the cover wouldn't be nearly as entertaining:) And you make a good point about the caveman thing, I didn't even notice that, I was too distracted by his preoccupation with his goods.

    Felicia - Right? You definitely couldn't get a good grip on those puny things;) The second guy is hilarious, what is he so interested in? Has he never seen that appendage before? And yes, Vision Controller has definitely been hit with the Whack A Mole:)

    Flippin - I love the Jewels of the Nile one:)

    Chris - You're welcome, glad they could make you smile!

  12. Okay, I managed to hold it together until the chia pet comment. Then, BAM! Now there shards of Pop-Tarts all over my keyboard from laughing with my mouth full.

  13. I love these covers and titles. Makes me happy!

  14. Aw, I'm less worried about the pinkie size of his horns and more concerned about their unfortunate droop. You have me wondering if there's a problem with the Nile's jewels...

  15. If his arm eventually DID rot off... Would he then be considered a zombie???

    I can't freaking tell you how much I love when you do these! Your comment made me all smiley and *awwww*! <3 you!!

  16. *snorts*

    Ah Jenny! I marvel at your maturity. I would have totally gone for the horny joke, even if that poor Demon's horns aren't very inspiring.

    And Turtle cute.

    I love Ellora's Cave covers! They are the best!

  17. Lol, poor guy, can't get his horns up..oh bad me *giggles*

  18. Darby - Yes! My goal is always to make people spit out food and/or drink while reading these posts. Success;)

    Victoria - Me too!

    Small - The droopiness is most certainly problematic. Maybe there's a kink in Nile's jewels as well and that's why he seems so worried to show them?

    Ashley - I think being a zombie would be an improvement, then we'd at least know he wasn't supposed to look human:) And my comment was true, your blog rocks!

    Missie - It took every ounce of willpower I possess to not make a horny joke. Every ounce:) Seriously, Ellora's Cave is going to keep the CC going for months to come, so much good stuff!

    Blodeuedd - HA! It's sad for him. He has horny dysfunction.

  19. Oh wow- that first cover...I hate anything demon, but that looks like a very wussy demon lover thing....

    Man bits- Im totally using that line in the near future!!!... :D

  20. The Ellora's Cave does tend to offer up some, er, lackluster covers. Have you seen the ones with purely computer generated graphics? Ouch.

  21. Oh. My. God. That has to be THE MOST RIDICULOUS depiction of a demon I've ever seen on a book cover -- seriously? those horns?? And what's with the skin tone? It just reeks of Photoshop :-S And I mean, clearly they all have to use the program, but when it's obvious and it sticks out, that's not good :-S And what's with the orange background? Ugh :-S Not a good cover for "Demon's Kiss" and i definitely wouldn't want to kiss that ;-) You're absolutely right about the size of the horns not being appropriate.

    As or Jewels of the Nile, that just made me smack my head. Why is he looking at his jewels?? lol And for "Vision Controller" it looks like the head has been pasted on to the larger body lol

  22. Ok Ellora's cave has some pretty bad covers. I'm laughing so much right now. Jewels of the Nile is a horrible title. The horns and the wings on the first cover look so fake. Plus the guy looks like he's bored out of his mind and about to fall asleep.

  23. Tina - Poor, poor demon with his little bitty horns. So sad:)

    Jennifer - I have! I've got some of those for next week, they're full of win:)

    Anita - He's my favorite, as soon as I saw him I knew he was destined for immortality on my blog;)

    Jenny - They do indeed. Apparently Jewels of the Nile is a series of some sort, but this guy was the only one checking out his package as opposed to looking at the camera on the covers I found, which clearly makes him awesome.

  24. Oh my gosh... As an author if your books received one of these covers wouldn't you just bawl your eyes out? But hey, they make for awesome entertainment I suppose!

  25. *giggles* gosh how I love your posts... they make me laugh like nothing else!!! You are pure epic awesomeness!

  26. I just burst out laughing when I saw the first cover, before I even read the commentary. Wow, what a sexy demon...not. I have to agree, those horns are pathetic.
    'Ellora's Cave: *Twilight*'-- it seems like everybody wants to be associated with Twilight in some way or another nowadays. Anyway, the critique is hilarious as always. :)

  27. Oh my god...I have tears in my eyes from laughing so hard. I still can't get over those teeny weeny horns. Jenny you have made my day!

  28. Guy No. 3 has a mullet. That's the mossy stuff behind his ears. Also, maybe the Jewel guy's jewels are lost. Maybe he forgot they had them. Still, he has should be gently informed that the cover of a book is not, perhaps, the place to be caughting checking up on them.

  29. SO FLIPPIN' FUNNY!!!! I needed this so much today as for most of it I had the mother of all migraines. Ah, but now is time for the laughter. I must comment tho (because I'm a loud mouth... hee hee)

    Oh the horns! The horns!! Yes, I'm immature enough to go for the horny joke. Um... my comment is about the horns in particular. Don't they look a bit droopy? Hee hee... do I really need to say more? LOL

    Of course the second one I was thinking he was making sure that the Jewels of the Nile are still there. Maybe he was a shifter and was pretending to be someone's dog. And you know what we do to prevent overpopulation of dogs... right???

    Oh and the third one. With your comment you had me thinking of Rocky Horror Picture Show. Where's his f*&^ neck? With his f&(* suit! :D

    Blame it on the meds. :P *giggles*

  30. Jenny have you ever watched The Witches of Eastwick with Jack Nicholson as Daryl the self proclaimed "horny little devil"? His um equipment according to Cher {one of the female character/witches} "bent the wrong way" maybe that is why the first cover's horns are curved ?

    Cover 2 just put me in a different state of mind, maybe he is afraid that when the pants finally come off the "Jewels" may be gone?

    The third cover your prose had me laughing so hard that I had a hard time clicking over to the actual post to even comment!

    Thanks for making my night!

  31. Oh Jenny- You left a comment about laughing in public and people not knowing what you are laughing at....I live in a house full of males right down to the two dogs. No one gets why I laugh hysterically at this post.

    I didn't have to scroll much past those horns to start laughing on the first picture. And I think I dated that second guy! But thanks for explaining what was off with the last picture. I knew it was weird but couldn't figure it out.

    I so look forward to your snark!

    Thanks for the laughs!!

    Have a great weekend!

  32. OMG, Jenny, I don't even know where to start. LOL! I think the guy in the first one had a bad feeling he'd look like that on the cover. Not even his hot abs could save him. As for the second one, I think he's wondering if he's still got it. ;)

  33. Avery - I personally would, especially since I'm sure the writing is way better than these covers would suggest!

    Danny - Thank you so much, I do work on my awesomeness each week;)

    Kat - The horns are inexcusable, I couldn't type my post until I had worked all the giggles out of my system:)

    Nic - Yay! That's always my goal:)

    Ruby - Honestly. He should know better than to check things out in public. Sheesh.

    Melissa - Hope you're feeling better, and so glad the ridiculousness of my post could make you laugh:)

    Jackie - Clearly his, um, parts are bent the wrong way too, that's a good way to describe things:) And there's just no explanation for the 3rd cover.

    Heather - My husband doesn't understand why I laugh at these covers either. Men;)

    Rummanah - If I were the poor first guy, I would have been quite pissed if they put those horns on my head. Pissed!

  34. O that first one is soooo wrong. Those horns are pathetic. Sorry! And you're so right, does the curve foreshadow something else curvy? LOL

  35. Hahaha! Jewels of the Nile, indeed. He really does look genuinely worried.

  36. Love these posts! Hysterical as always!
    Truly Bookish

  37. Oh, Jenny! I love the cover critiques and saw pretty much the same problems as you. Not only are those horns tiny but they look really weird coming out of his head for some reason. Someone needs to do a better job Photoshopping. And what is up with the guy staring into his pants?!

  38. LOL so much I had tears running down my cheeks at your comments. Thanks.

  39. LMAO that's awesome! you so rock these posts!

    I was reading the second one and thought the same thing about the S and I LMAO

    the horns as well, OMG!

  40. *Snorts* I had to look twice to find those tiny little horns. Tsk. That really begs the question as to whether or not that's the only small bits he posesses. Either way, I'd rather be spared the disappointed. Ooh, and let me not get started on Mister badly photoshopped head on body that is not his own. Well, it certianly gives new meaning to the word shape-shifting, doesn't it. Love these posts of yours Jenny - they're such a scream! :)

  41. Juju - Poor small, curvy-horned demon. Maybe his wings are really big in order to compensate?

    Madigan - Doesn't he? I'm pretty concerned for him I think:)

    NC - Thank you:)

    Zahida - Thanks! His horns are just ridiculous in general, I love them:)

    Tahlia - I try;)

    Aly - Aren't they awesome? I wish it would be a series so they're could be a bunch of tiny-horned fellows for us to look at:)

    Larissa - Thank you!!

    Tammy - I don't understand the last cover, I was completely stupefied when I first saw it. My brain just kept saying "why?":)

  42. Jenny...i love the snark. *grins* Ummmm the first makes me go ick. Seriously. Ick. I don't do demon books and honestly can't see how one could be attracted to that cover. (mind you I haven't read the comments here & have nothing against those who do like that sorta thing) But my reflexes make me go gak. XD

    Naked turtle. That kills me! Even though he's a yummy one still I could see!

    This is a most hilarious post, Jenny!
    *waves* Hope your having a great weekend!!

  43. OMG! Could I tell you I was laughing so hard that I couldn't even breathe and I'm sure my stomach now has some new muscles in it! I made my sister, who was in town from Ohio, read it and she was dying. Now, she keeps going, Jen, is that post up yet? I keep telling her it's only on Fridays. She doesn't blog, but she is so into your cover critiques. Gotta love 'em. It really made my Easter Sunday (as that's when I read it). Loved it!

    Favorite line: I have to say I'm not impressed with his pinky finger sized protrusions.

    In the Closet With a Bibliophile

  44. Re: Jewels of the Nile
    Perhaps said gentlemen has just acquired these gems as the result of a lifetime spent without them and is overwhelmed with the amount of felicity the sight of them bestows on him, or maybe they sparkle and he's trying to decide if it was worth acquiring them in the first place. I don't know about you guys but if a gent approached me with glimmering gusto emanating from his trousers, I'd be a bit hesitant, not to mention skeptical as to if he could actually be…bejeweled in such a literal sense.

  45. All I have to say is...thank you. You have made my day! These are too funny. :0)

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