We scoured the internet, received submissions from authors and publishers and sat with piles of books around us until we found the 10 Best Lesbian Book Covers in 2015. Okay, well most of the covers were looked at on screen, so we sat with virtual piles of books, but still it makes for a great image doesn’t it? I can officially say that this is one of the most beautiful posts we have ever had because it is filled with the work of genius designers to whom we tip our hats. This time I was not judging alone. Judging this series of covers was myself (Sheena) and my wife (Tamara) who, apart from being my sexy wife, is a fantastic designer. She did my website, my branding and she does design and marketing work for a living, so I thought I would drag along for the ride. We looked for covers with specific criteria. They had to:
- Be visually appealing to lesbians
- Convey the idea of the book and the genre
- Be striking enough to encourage book sales
Two quick points I would like you to note: I do not have sales figures for these, so I can’t say whether or not these outsold others, but we figured that if it was striking the chances are it would draw attention enough to promote sales. Also, I have not read all of these books so I cannot guarantee that they are good. I will link to reviews of the books I have read.
1 The World of Cherry by Kay Brandt
These covers speak of opulence, sex and something primal that surfaces when one looks at a beautiful woman. It’s more than just hot ladies in sexy outfits, though. There is a depth to the cover design that makes one just want to touch it. I have put all three covers in the number one spot because they work so well as a set.
Cover designer: Mass Designs
Mass Desig eXcessica Publishing
Review: These books are not for sensitive ladies. The World of Cherry is a series of lesbian porn novels.
Amazon Blurb: The World of Cherry is an erotic and psychological journey into the soul of a lesbian madam and the explicit activities that take place within the private high-end, all-women strip club she owns. At the Cherry Club, the members are free to indulge in their wildest fantasies with other women, discreetly, and with class. A beautiful and skilled staff of dancers and acrobatic performers entertain for their pleasure, stopping at nothing to satisfy the needs of the gorgeous and wealthy women who frequent the club.
The cover is a perfect representation of this sweet, light romance. So often illustrated covers go wrong. I can think f a number of fantasy covers that have failed. However, when done just right they are a perfect depiction of the book you will read and the journey you will take with the characters.
Cover designer: Fereday Design
Publisher: Breezy Tree Press
Review: See my Full Review of That Certain Something by Clare Ashton
Amazon Blurb: Lambda Literary Award finalist for lesbian romance. Love or money? Follow the head or heart? Pia and Cate seem to be flip sides of a coin. But when they meet they definitely have that certain something, and these questions aren’t so simple after a night like theirs. Pia Benitez-Smith has her head in the clouds of ideals and romance. She’s a photojournalist out to prove herself with her compassionate eye and although not exactly accident prone, most days trouble seems to find her. On one such day, she literally falls into the arms of the beautiful Cate. Elegant, intriguing and classy, Cate is Pia’s polar opposite. When the two dispute the importance of love versus money, Cate is adamant that her perfect night will always be an expensive one. Working class Pia can’t resist the challenge and with the assistance of a beguiling summer night in London, she begins to enchant her new friend.
The cover is bold. The image is strong, the flag and badge work well behind the title and it suits Radclyffe’s strong writing style.
Cover designer: Sheri Halal
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
Review: This is an action-packed audiobook with great narration.
Amazon Blurb: Honor and duty are not always black and white—and when self-styled patriots take up arms against the government, the price of honor may be a life. Blair Powell and Jane Graves have much in common and even more that sets them apart in an invisible battle raging on home soil. Blair’s father is the president of the United States, while Jane’s is a domestic terrorist bent on bringing about a new world order at the expense of the present one. When Blair takes to the campaign trial to support her father’s re-election, Cameron Roberts and the newest members of Blair’s security detail must protect the president and his daughter from foes bent on revenge. Jane and her secret ally within the president’s inner circle vow to destroy them all, at any cost.
This cover is clean and modern in design. The colours, symmetry and image style show that it is a light chicklit book and the white space gives it a lovely balance.
Cover designer: Kevin Pruitt
Publisher: Custard Books
Review: See my Full Review of London Calling
Blurb: “When the plane took off, I wondered what Karen was doing, if she was happy, knew I was leaving or wanted me back. Whatever, it was too late now. I was gone…” Jess Sharp is at a crossroads – back in London, living in her parents’ spare room, jobless and single. Not quite the irresistible package she was aiming for at age 32. One night things take an upward turn when she meets someone who could be a game-changer. But everything in her riotously chaotic life seems to get in the way, including her best friend’s wedding, far too much tequila and the ghosts of girlfriends past. The course of true love has never been so injury-prone. Will Jess eventually overcome her romantic ineptitude and find her happy ever after? Or will she continue to trip over her own feet in the race for romance? A cracking debut novel from a new UK talent that zips along with sparkling dialogue and believable, yet original characters. Thousands of readers around the globe agree!
The nostalgic imagery, colouring and general appearance reflect the concept of the book well. The imagery is so well done that it makes you want to pick up the book and take the journey to Paris.
Cover designer: Acorn Graphics
Publisher: Regal Crest
Blurb: After four years of war ravaging the French countryside and towns, it looked as if all sense of humanity had disappeared. To an outsider, the streets of 1918 Paris would seem the worst and most dreary place for an American to ever wish to step foot upon being only ninety miles from the closest front. This, of course, was the fear that beset the soul of Marguerite Adler. She would not have had the slightest interest in traveling to Paris if it were not for a letter from her mother’s estate, which stated her presence was needed immediately to settle affairs. Marguerite’s life becomes gradually transformed in a city that is very much removed from any imaginations. Paris, despite parts of it damaged, is quite alive and colorful. It is in Paris where she finds Jean, a seemingly virtuous soul trapped in a mind exposed to the effects of war and her patriotic support. Both women, having pledged themselves to peace, albeit in quite opposite ways, find themselves attracted to a spirit the other wished they had. This is a story of how civilians survived in an everyday world of atrocity, hostilities and love by their almost sublime faiths and their prevailing submission of acceptance of the world around them.
6 Falling Slowly by Lila Bruce
The cover is striking. The image of the flag draws your eye and almost seems to contradict the rolling hills and peaceful scene underneath.
Cover designer: Eden Connors
Blurb: Badly wounded in Afghanistan when the helicopter she is piloting goes down under enemy fire, Captain Quinn Briscoe is struggling to rebuild her life. Facing not only a disfiguring injury, but a medical discharge and the end of a serious relationship, Quinn increasingly shuts herself—and her heart—off from the rest of the world. Her first meeting with lovely, self-confident and successful business owner Alison Jenkins is disastrous, and Quinn feels an instant antipathy for the woman, along with an undeniable attraction. Trying to get along for the sake of her sister Rebekah, who’s gone to work for Allie, Quinn offers to fly the attractive boutique owner to a family wedding. However, what should have been a quick one day trip to the mountains of North Carolina suddenly turns into a long weekend at a romantic lodge. When a series of circumstances makes it increasingly clear that Quinn won’t be able to deny the growing passion between them much longer, will she be able to put the scars of the past aside to build a relationship with Allie worth fighting for.
So often lesbian book covers look awkward because the two women on the cover are posing. This cover looks like we caught the lovers in a moment of passion. The balance of the photo, the scratchy effect, the colours used and the font all work together towards a good depiction of the book.
Publisher: Venatic Press
Review: See my Review of The Housemistress
Amazon Blurb: The Housemistress — An Erotic Lesbian Romance. For a lot of seventeen-year-old girls, being sent to a same-sex boarding school would be a nightmare for one simple reason: No boys. But that’s really not a problem for sixth form student Rylie Harcourt. Instead, what might prove somewhat difficult to overcome is the school’s strict policy concerning on-campus relationships. All sexual contact is expressly forbidden. Carnal pursuits are a distraction from learning, so says the Headmistress, and virtue is to be as highly regarded as education–if not higher. This harsh ban on expressions of love becomes especially problematic when Rylie meets her new French Housemistress, Vivienne Carriveau, and attraction sparks. In a sexless environment, thirty-one-year-old Mademoiselle Carriveau is a magnet for the affections of her hormonal, adolescent students. Competition for her attention is fierce, and when it starts to become clear that Rylie’s burgeoning interest in her is reciprocated in equal measure, tension among the student body rises to a deadly level.
It’s a striking image and the font used gives it a gothic feel. It makes one long to pick up the book and give it a read.
Cover designer: Linda Callaghan
Amazon Blurb: In 1899 Cecilia Natashia Dupuin, a new graduate of a Parisian finishing school, is summoned to a secluded château on the outskirts of Grenoble, France. She believes her employment is to write a simple vanity memoir for the Lady of the household.
However, Cecilia soon finds herself caught up in a dark and fantastical tale centered on the mysterious history of the château. Will Cecilia be pulled into the unholy darkness of the château, or will she escape the seductive nature of the beast that hides within the shadows?
The font and imagery work together to create a mood.
Publisher: Affinity eBook Press NZ
Cover designer: Irish Dragon Designs
Amazon Blurb: After catching her husband red-handed in bed with his secretary, Kayleigh Gibbs takes her daughter and her Jeep and flees across the country. She opens up her own veterinarian practice, and they move into an old, secluded farmhouse in Hoekwil, South Africa.
At her best friend’s housewarming party Kayleigh meets the beautiful and enchanting Rebecca Steward. Rebecca is instantly drawn to Kayleigh, but is still recovering from a breakup – her girlfriend left her for a man. She’s afraid of a repeat performance with Kayleigh, and won’t pursue a romantic relationship with her, preferring instead to develop a platonic friendship.
When odd, inexplicable things start happening on the farmhouse, a terrified Kayleigh turns to Rebecca for comfort, only to find herself developing unexplainable feelings for her new friend. Rebecca, despite her best intentions, is falling in love with Kayleigh. But when Rebecca moves in with Kayleigh to help her get to the bottom of the haunting, she finds more than she bargained for. Can Rebecca and Kayleigh overcome ghosts from the past and their own insecurities, or will a presence from the past tear them apart?
The red, gold and black play off one another to create a feeling of opulence and intrigue.
My Review: I enjoyed this book. The bondage isn’t usually my kind of thing, but this was a fun read.
Amazon Blurb: Bethany from North Carolina is about to lose her job, as her company has been sold to a much larger company in Silicon Valley. She spends the weekend in The Bay Area prior to a Monday morning job interview only to meet the dark and dangerous Katrina.
Katrina is a domme and introduces Bethany to a world she’s only imagined in her darkest fantasies.
This novel is 61,000 words. This story features sex between two women, bondage, domination and submission.
Let’s face it, we all judge a book by its cover, that is why there is a saying about it. Plus it’s kind of fun judging books by their covers. I just made a top 10 list by doing exactly that. Also, judging a book by its cover is completely educational.
Why you ask? Well because a lesbian author or book designer may be scrolling the internet late one night when she comes across this post and is struck by the thunder of how brilliant these covers are. Overcome, she is going to create a masterpiece to be enjoyed forever more. Lesbian book covers don’t have to be subpar.
Self Published covers do not have to be terrible. Let me tell you there are a couple of self-published books on this list with fantastic covers. Any book can have a spectacular cover. Every good story should have a beautiful exterior and make us want to read the story that is trapped within the pages, just waiting to be explored. I must say, one of the saddest things for me is a great book with a terrible cover. I just feel that the author won’t get the attention that she deserves.