Win-It Wednesday: The Darlings in Love

Yes, it's Thursday. This site was blacked out yesterday to protest SOPA (more info here). And now: I'm back! Last week's title, Tempest by Julie Cross, goes to... Keanu lover Natalie! Send me your address, N.

This week, I've got a copy of Melissa Kantor's The Darlings in Love, and she's here to share the Cover Story! Just leave a comment on the cover and you're entered to win a copy. Here's Melissa:

"I had a fantasy of the cover, which might be different from an idea. When I was a kid, there was this book Forever, by Judy Blume. On the cover was a locket with a picture of a girl's face, and when you opened the cover, you saw more of that picture--the girl's whole body, the boy she was standing with, etc. It was this amazing reveal. [That's the cover, right]. Well, since pearl pendants play a big role in the story of the Darlings, I wanted the cover to picture a chain with a pearl on it, and when you opened the cover, you saw that the pearl was actually on a girl's neck and that girl was standing with her two best friends. There's a name for that (a cutaway? something like that). But my editor said that covers like that tend to snag and rip and that's a real problem. As happens with so many things in life, reality intruded on fantasy.

"Once the pearl necklace idea was nixed, I think we discussed there being three of something, to symbolize the thee Darlings. The only thing I didn't want was three cupcakes. There are a lot of cupcake covers out there.

"When I first saw my cover, I hated it. I am not exaggerating. I remember calling my editor and making it clear that I was furious. I was like, This is the worst cover! What were you thinking? I hate this cover, etc. She's a very calm, rational person, and she tried to get me to be specific, so I more or less listed everything about the cover (from the font to the color to the cookies) and said why I hated it. I don't know that that was what she had in mind when she said, 'Be specific.'

"The one thing on the front cover that I was able to change was the cookies. They looked more like amoebas (is that how you spell it?) than hearts. I also had a lot of complaints about the back cover, and they took some of those to heart.

"Okay, this is somewhat embarrassing, but now I LOVE the cover. When I got my copy in the mail, I thought it looked so pretty and shiny. I love the color (which I originally hated) and I love how you can see the skyline in the cookies! I'm completely ashamed of my initial response, though I will say in my own defense that things look very different in real life than in the computer image I saw. If you have a chance to compare this image with the real book, you'll see what I mean.  I think the cookies are great, because Victoria (one of the Darlings) loves to cook and the heart-shapes are perfect because all of the Darlings fall in love in this book."

Thanks, Melissa! I am a huge cookie fan. Sara Zarr's Sweethearts remains one of my favorite covers ever, and this one is crazy cute. Also: I'm hungry. And, by the by, I adore those step-back covers too (I just call them Cover Holes, usually. Very VC Andrews.)

What do you guys think?

PS-Read the Cover Story for the first book in the Darlings series, The Darlings Are Forever.