Buster & Moo: the cover

Hi all

Very kindly a few of you looked a a blurb I wrote for my upcoming book and gave me some very useful feedback. Now it’s the cover and, in all honesty, I’m challenged.

So, I’d love any thoughts and there’s a poll thingamedoodle at the end if you want to vote. That would be much appreciated.

First up here’s a shorter blurb, as was recommended and which may help with those of you new to this new work. Basically it’s a book about relationships, two couples brought together by their attachment to a dog – hence the title. Simplistically one couple are pretty much on their uppers, the bloke is recently out of prison and the woman cleaning and hating it; the other are well to do, professional with apparently a comfortable life but there are some serious fissures in that relationship and lifestyle.

Anyway, the blurb…

Buster & Moo – Blurb


With Mervin and Landen’s relationship under strain – Landen is having an affair with a colleague – they adopt a dog, which they call Mottram, Moo for short. Moo belonged to Sheri and Dave who gave him up when their new landlord forbade dogs. They call him Buster.

But for a chance encounter between Sheri and Mervin when Moo escapes, the couples might never have known each other. Mervin, impressed with Sheri’s skills controlling the dog, persuades her to give him lessons and from then on their lives become more and more intertwined.

Dave, out of prison on licence, finds out about the lessons and misreads what is happening, putting his marriage under strain. Landen loses her job following the discovery of her affair by her boss and then becomes involved in a police investigation into alleged money laundering and drug dealing at her old firm. She tries desperately to keep the truth from Mervin.

Events begin to spiral out of control. As the four lives overlap and criss-cross, through the medium of their shared attachment to the dog, the problems mount.  Sheri and Mervin grow close, as they battle to help each other but it is the unlikely alliance between Sheri and Landen that leads to the dramatic climax. There is only room for one hero, however. Who will it be?

buster-moo-1b buster-moo-3b

Can you see the dog in the negative space? Does he need say a facial feature or two to make him clear? And the first cover. I had the dogs overlapped to begin with but found that rather messy…

 Here’s the poll

Thank you in advance…

About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published four books - Dead Flies and Sherry Trifle, My Father and Other Liars, Salisbury Square and Buster & Moo. In addition I have published three anthologies of short stories and a memoir of my mother. More will appear soon. I will try and continue to blog regularly at geofflepard.com about whatever takes my fancy. I hope it does yours too. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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48 Responses to Buster & Moo: the cover

  1. willowdot21 says:

    I think a dog nose and mouth under Moo would look brilliant, still plain but striking.!

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Love both examples but think the second may be a bit more fitting for your story. Could you shift things around so that the O’s in Moo are somehow the eyes?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Like them both, but prefer the second as it’s very clever if you can enhance the doggy outline somehow.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. M. L. Kappa says:

    Not to put a damper in the proceedings, but I would not have noticed the dog in the middle if you hadn’t pointed it out. And if you add a lot of detail to it, I’m afraid it could become fussy. It’s a great idea, the negative space between two women, but it needs to be expressed differently. Only my opinion, of course.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. M. L. Kappa says:

    You have to think of someone glancing at books along a shelf, or scrolling down an Amazon page. They wouldn’t notice the detail…

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ritu says:

    Liking these!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I’ve gone for 3

    Liked by 1 person

  8. lorilschafer says:

    I agree that the dog in #2 needs to be clearer – maybe accentuate the face more? I think your name needs to be in larger type, too. Also, I think the blurb might be a bit too long and detailed in terms of the plot. If you could cut it down to two snappy paragraphs, I think it would capture the tone of the book better. My two cents 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Hi Geoff, I don’t like the current favourite cover – I don’t get it. I didn’t see the negative dog until you pointed it out either. My eye will always be drawn to a cover with colour. If you really want the female silhouettes I wonder if you could make them really small and fit them into the white space between the two colourful dogs on cover 1. It could be a complete dog’s breakfast though 🙂

    The blurb is too long and detailed I feel. A blurb should entice me in to read the book, not make me feel I’ve read it. If you know what I mean …..

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Hi Geoff. You’ve got your work cut out for you with the choices. Personally I like option 2, since there’s only one dog. (I find that many people are easily confused…) I saw the dog in the negative space easily. I think it’s a cool idea. Good luck! Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    • TanGental says:

      Really helpful thanks

      Liked by 1 person

      • If people are not seeing the dog… What might be slowing them down is the white area above the top of the dog’s head. Maybe the text or something could be used as a “dividing line” or break there.
        To please those who miss color (and I do like color), see how it looks to you with the text in a saturated (jewel tone?) color. That might make it pop. Just “throwing that out there.”

        The colorful one with the two dogs is attractive. However, I think the other one begins telling the story before the book is opened.

        Liked by 2 people

      • TanGental says:

        All really helpful thanks.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Great covers! I love that first one but went with cover two. I saw the women first but pretty much right away saw the dog and I like that as it’s one dog coming between two women (or families). I don’t care for the circle on the right-hand side. As for the blurb…I hate to say this again but could you trim it a TINY bit more? It’s much better but I think some of details could go?

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Al Lane says:

    I agree with most here and prefer the second cover, but with alterations. I didn’t see the dog at first, but I read this on my laptop and as I scrolled down the screen the eye is drawn to the white space at the top first. On a static thumbnail-type image, this is obviously less of a problem, but I think the white space there distracts from the dog motif. I do think more colour (red, perhaps) would help the second cover stand out – maybe even just using it for the title.

    Good luck with it!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Perhaps a dog in the distance as if looking from one to the other. He is the subject but has no control. I like the silhouetted couple but not the two colored dogs. Don’t know if this helps. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Charli Mills says:

    I’m so thrilled to see you publishing Buster & Moo! I loved reading your early segments on your blog.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I only noticed the negative of the dog when you told us about it, Geoff. I’d go for putting more detail into highlight the dog a little more. I think a slight dash of colour, in doing so, would make that cover even better.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. I think it’s already been said, but the blurb is still way too long, Geoff. But I do know how hard it is to get a sense of the book without telling some of the story, so good luck with your trimming.
    As for the covers, the second one was very clever and has potential, but – having read the earlier draft – I didn’t feel either really reflected the story. Having said that, you did say there had been some significant changes, so I may be misjudging it

    Liked by 1 person

    • TanGental says:

      Thanks re the blurb. I’m sure you are right. The story is still a thriller so I agree there is an absence of threat in the image. But I do rather like image two so I’ll try and see if I can ‘toughen’ it while keeping the concept

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Hi, I like the second cover, black and white with the two people. I don’t think it needs more detail but I do thing the faces should be touching so you can define and see the dog in the middle better. I think it’s very imaginative and with a few tweaks it’ll be perfect! Good luck, I love the description of the book too, now I want to read it.


  18. Helen Jones says:

    Congratulations on the new book, Geoff! Sounds like an intriguing read 🙂 And, while I voted for the ‘two dogs’ cover, I think if the dog image on the second cover was made clearer, either by connecting the women somehow so the dog’s head is closed off, or by adding a doggy nose or something, that would be very strong too. Tough decision!

    Liked by 1 person

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