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Hello kboards people. A while back I asked for title help for my new series, and the consensus seemed to be for "May Contain Spies." I pitched this to a new cover designer and this is what she came up with for May Contain Spies. What do you all think?



Here's the blurb in case you were wondering:

Abby Banks is your typical sixteen-year-old girl, except that her entire life has been one big lie. Kidnapped as a young girl and fostered by a government agency as collateral, Abby never knew she was important... until her mother's terrorist organization unleashes a devastating attack on the facility.

Only she doesn't want Abby back. What she wants is a heart transplant... and she would have gotten it if it wasn't for Stephen, a down on his luck secret agent with a reputation to repair.

Will Stephen be able to keep Abby safe? Will Abby be able to stop her mother before it's too late, or will they both wind up as speed bumps on her mother's road to world domination?
 

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I'd remove the city from the top half of the image and fill it with that smokey gray sky from the bottom....
 

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Hmm, I'm not a fan of this cover. Can't put my finger on it, but it's ... bland? Thought you'd prefer to hear it rather than I keep silent :(
 

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In my opinion, the blandness comes from the font. The image itself looks pretty great to me, but it looks like Arial Wide or some other version of Arial and therefore just screams "meh" to me. If your designer can change the font to something a little less common, that might help a lot.
 

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I really like this cover but I'm not sure it fits the genre. It seems like you're leaning towards YA/dystopian from the blurb and this cover definitely doesn't match that. I'd go with something more like from the Matched series, if that's what you're going for.
 

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Your blurb tells WAY too much! This is all that you need:

JACipriano said:
Abby Banks is your typical sixteen-year-old girl, except that her entire life has been one big lie. Kidnapped as a young girl and fostered by a government agency as collateral, Abby never knew she was important… until her mother's terrorist organization unleashes a devastating attack on the facility.
That right there would make me want to read your book. You've given enough story hints there to… to… to fill a really exciting book!

You also make the too-common mistake of ending your blurb with "soap opera" questions:

Will Stephen be able to keep Abby safe? Will Abby be able to stop her mother before it's too late, or will they both wind up as speed bumps on her mother's road to world domination?
Will Robert and Mary ever get back together? Will Robert's mother's plan to separate them forever be stopped by Jim?

Please don't do stuff like this. It completely detracts from the suspenseful buildup of what has come before.
 

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JACipriano said:
Why do you feel it's bland? (and yes, I do like hearing it.)
It's just a personal gut reaction. Can't put my finger on it. But it's just one opinion. Some others seem to like it ;)
 

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I like the shorter blub proposed by Peter Spenser. It get's me in without clouding the promise. Your cover I'm not sure about. It is very SciFi and doesn't relate to the title or the story as far as I can see.  :)
 

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While I really like the cover, there are a few caveats. :)

There is too much 'blank space', and it doesn't exactly fit your genre, as previously stated. For me the images feels a little too 'cut and paste', as they don't follow the curve of the hourglass, making it look too one dimensional and contrasting to the feel of the cover. The font could also use an update, but I'm not an expert on fonts, so I can't really give you any more thoughts on that.

I also agree about the blurb, the shortened version (your first paragraph) is enough to get me hooked. It sounds really exciting, and it reminds me a lot of the type of books I used to read when I was younger.

May I ask if the genre is YA thriller/suspense or mainstream thriller/suspense? Either way the story seems interesting.

Best of luck!

Jo

 
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