Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Blog Tour: Christine Johnson

So, there are a lot of differences between the US and the UK. Obviously. I mean, we drive on opposite sides of the road. Tea vs. Coffee. The Queen vs. . . . well, No Queen, I guess. But when it comes to books and publishing, there are two things that come up a lot, one major and one minor.

The major one, is, of course, covers. Why are they different? Which is better?

I have to say, I was VERY NERVOUS about the UK cover for Claire de Lune. I adore - and I mean *adore* - the cover of the US version. I thought the UK cover had to be a disappointment. The cover Gods couldn’t smile on the same book twice, right?

Wrong.

I love the UK cover just as much as the US one. They’re so utterly different. The US version with the gorgeous girl and the cool moon and the dark forest captures the romance and mystery of the story so perfectly. But the British version, with the thorny red heart and bold colors gives a great glimpse into the intensity and heat of the book.

Everyone I know really loves both of them. My mother expressed a slight preference for the British version, because my name is bigger and “stands out more” on the cover.

Spoken like a true mother, huh?

My bookclub had a special meeting just after the release of the US version to celebrate, and one of the members has a friend who makes gorgeous cakes. She combined the two covers, putting Claire’s profile inside the thorny heart with the moon shining overhead. It worked shockingly well, and it was DELICIOUS, though eating that much black frosting was a bit disconcerting. Still, it was a pretty perfect metaphor for my feelings about the covers. Instead of one or the other, she picked BOTH. And I do to.

So. That’s my take on my two covers. Truly, it’s like having kids. I can’t pick between them - I love them both for different reasons! I’m always interested to hear others opinions. Please leave your thoughts in the comments! Which do you like better and why?

Okay, moving on. The “small” issue. It shows up in the color of Matthew’s eyes. Brown in the US and brown in the UK, but is it “color” or “colour?” In this matter, I have a firm opinion, unlike the “which cover is better” issue. I like the British spelling. I like “colour” and “favour” and “realise.” Of course, since I’m trapped in the United States, I have to hide my extra, anglophiliac u’s. I just think the British spellings look more elegant. I’ve always felt this way, but I think my opinion was cemented when I spent two years at DePaul University’s conservatory - The Theatre School. I wrote “theatre” so many times that it just sort of . . . stuck.

I’ve always wondered what Brits think of our “western” spellings. All those truncated - or’s and the harsh z’s instead of the more restrained s’s. If they think about it at all. I can accept that I may be the only one who’s nerdy enough to worry about this particular issue. In my defense, I *did* say that it was a small issue! *gets down off odd-coloured high horse* *pets book covers*

Sophie: In answer to Christine's question - I don't like the "western" spellings; they kind of annoy me. Spell properly people! :)

9 comments:

  1. Oh, I loved reading this! I specialise in UK/US linguistic differences and I still regularly work in the "translation" of US English to UK English. This was right up my street. :)
    Thanks to Christine and Sophie for this wonderful post!
    (I also love both covers!)

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  2. Great post - I also can't decide which cover I prefer - I love them both:)

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  3. I really like both covers so it would be hard to choose a favorite, I think I'd possibly the US wins slightly for me but then I love the UK heart. Nope I just can't pick LOL

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  4. I'm not really sure which I prefer - they're both fine, I guess.

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  5. Glad to see I'm not the only one who's torn on the cover.

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  6. I'm such a big cover fan. I like both of these so much!

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  7. I like both, but the UK cover is very similar to another book called "Finding Sky," so it loses something of its specialness.

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  8. UK spellings all the way. I always feel quite upset when I have to go through a US copyedit. It feels like something of the personality of the book - or even my personality - is getting sucked away. And it's not like we can't understand each other's spellings. Why change them? *Sob*

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