The art of the romance book covers is often overlooked but is crucial to the sale of the book. Why? The romance book cover is the first thing a potential reader will see, so all elements present in it should be visually appealing and reflective of the story inside. A common ground for romance book covers is that they’re romantic and evocative, making the reader feel the emotions the book will stir up: love, passion, desire, or longing. The cover should also be easy to read and, storywise, give a hint of what the romance book is about without giving too much away. Well-designed romance book covers will make their respective books look more inviting to potential readers and help ensure that it ends up in the hands of those who love them.
Romance Book Covers
1. Dinner for Two by Drea Stein
What do most romance book covers have in common? Readers can easily find one that features a close-up of the lead characters on a simple, single-color background, with the title written in a font that is easy to read. Apart from the couple enjoying each other’s company on this book cover, the lower section depicts the setting where their romance blossoms. This formula, from the image choice to the typography, works for most romance readers since they’re more likely to buy a book if they spot the hero or heroine in some romantic setting. Romance book covers work to make us feel all the feels, and a design similar to this cover illustration does that!
2. In The Weeds by B.K. Borison
Romance book covers with hidden faces are undoubtedly familiar in the market, whether that involves photo covers or cartoon covers. Using this design helps readers maximize their imagination and visualize the characters instead of solely relying on the cover art. This design is effective for this book cover showing a cartoon drawing of a couple with a large bouquet of white, yellow, and orange flowers. The couple holds the flowers together, blocking the faces of the woman in the sundress and the man in a flannel shirt. The typography used for the book’s title consists of a flowing, romantic font in pastel yellow, carefully chosen to stand out against the solid orange background. The author’s name is also featured prominently on the top of the book cover. Overall, this romance book cover conveys the feeling of a romantic love story, possibly even a steamy one.
3. Love & Other Words by Christina Lauren
In recent years, pink-colored books have grown in popularity as romantic or girly, often associated with the color of love. In recent years, there’s been a surge in the popularity of books with pink covers, from romance novels to self-help guides. While some may write off pink-colored books as too sentimental, many are well-written and offer an enjoyable reading experience. This romance novel’s book cover perfectly exemplifies why pink-colored books are so popular among romance fiction readers. The book cover is pink, adorned with various objects such as a stack of books, a cup of coffee, and an envelope with a letter inside, giving the book an elegant and romantic feel. Its simple yet effective design perfectly encapsulates the book’s love and loss, hope, and heartbreak themes.
4. The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood
While some argue that a more realistic cover is more effective in catching potential readers’ attention, something is appealing and irresistible about the charm and whimsy of cartoony or illustrated romance book covers. For example, this book cover features a cute cartoon couple sharing a kiss, with the man’s eyes wide open in shock. The background shows laboratory flasks and test tubes, possibly in correlation with the book’s title. Moreover, the cover illustration and typography are distinct, so readers have time to fall in love with each element. In a genre often filled with cliches, this cover stands out and gives readers a glimpse of the fun and romance that awaits them inside the pages.
5. A Part of You by Lynden Renwick
There are no specific rules when choosing color schemes for romance book covers. While softer color palettes that evoke feelings of love, passion, and excitement are all excellent choices for a romance book cover, many others use darker, more subdued colors to create a more mysterious, sensual, or dramatic atmosphere. This novel falls under the romantic genre, yet the color scheme would make the readers wonder if it has erotic or thriller themes. The couple huddled under the rain or sprinkles of rain can also depict the intense emotions they’re dealing with, whether that’s distress or despair. It’s a clever and thought-provoking book cover that suits the genre but will also make you curious about what you should expect from the story.
6. The Roommate by Rosie Danan
While many elements go into designing a successful romance book cover, typography is one of the most important. The right font can convey the book’s tone, set the mood, and even help convey the genre. For example, it’s common for romance book covers to use a more delicate, flowing font to express the story’s emotions. This book cover has an eye-catching cover illustration that uses creative typography to significant effect. The book’s title uses a flowing, cursive script in neon type, which makes the book look playful and inviting. The cover also features a simple illustration of two people sitting on a couch, the young woman reading a book while the guy stares at her. Overall, it’s a well-designed book cover that screams, “pick me up!” primarily since it uses a font that’s easy to read and an illustration that’s not so graphic or distracting.
7. The DNA of you and Me by Andrea Rothman
Is there anything more romantic than a good love story? We all love a good romance novel, and it’s even better when they come with gorgeous covers. Take this book cover as an example! The most prominent aspect of this cover illustration is the display of the silhouette of a man and woman formed through colored dots of various sizes. It reflects the book’s title, as readers can interpret these dots as scientific concepts like particles, molecules, or bubbles. As for the typography, the title used hand lettering and sans serif fonts, with a color that stands out against the background. Meanwhile, the words “A Novel” are in the same color shade as the laboratory objects in the scene, most likely showing that it’s less significant than the other elements in the cover art. In conclusion, it’s a cover that effectively images the story waiting inside: a tale of love, science, and secrets.
8. How Not To Fall by Emily Foster
Many romance novels feature a passionate embrace or a steamy kiss on the cover to get readers in the mood to read the book. Kisses on book covers are often very symbolic as they can represent the first kiss between two lovers, the moment when a relationship turns from friendship to something more, or show the physical passion between two characters. As for this romance novel, the cover image contradicts the book’s title as the couple shares a romantic kiss in the rain. Still, a couple sharing a kiss on a book cover like this will grab attention and get readers excited about what’s inside.
9. My Favorite Half-night Stand by Christina Lauren
A romance book cover may be a beautiful or evocative image that speaks to the book’s themes. For instance, the book cover of this romance book referenced texting as it showed what looked like an iMessage screen. The image may look too simple, but it captures the novel’s central theme—online dating. The lively yellow cover design also hints at the comedic aspects of this book’s modern love story. As for the typography, the author’s name appears prominently on the lower section, possibly emphasizing the author’s identity, considering they’re a bestselling author. Simply put, this book cover used a minimalistic yet impactful approach to creating a romance book cover.
10. True North by Robin Huber
Flowers are one of the most famous images on romance book covers. Why? That’s because they’re associated with love, of course! Readers can find various flowers on romance book covers, from roses to lilies to daisies. The flowers on the book cover often reflect the type of love story within the pages, most of which may have a dramatic twist at the end. As for this novel, you’ll find petals of magnolia blossoms on top of a map. Since magnolias often symbolize endurance and love, one can assume that’s the case for this modern, southern romance story. The font style and color as also bold yet not distracting, a wise choice that complements the other elements in this contemporary romance novel cover. This cover is bright and cozy, and even though it may be one of those “less romance” book covers, it’s enough to woo romance readers.
11. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
If you’re a fan of romance novels, then you may notice that many of them have pretty graphic art book covers. This trend is prevalent in young adult fiction, as the book covers can appeal more to the target audience. This romance book cover perfectly exemplifies why this trend is so successful. The cover illustration is simple and one of the novel’s highlights, showing the backs of the two main characters with their headphones leading to one another. Looking at the headphone cables, isn’t it clever how they kept them tangled to form the “&” symbol in the title? The typography style used is pencil-like and handwritten, and the colors in the title, red and blue, clearly represent the characters. To summarize, this book cover is brilliant and minimal, persuading readers to try reading the book.
Good romance book covers will help a reader to identify the genre at a glance. Although there is no one formula for designing the perfect romance book cover, effectively combining easy-to-read typography and compelling images or illustrations can quickly pique the interest of would-be readers. Remember, well-designed romance book covers can make all the difference in whether someone picks up a book. By keeping the above things in mind, you can create book covers specific to your romance book, making readers want to know more about the story inside.
For inspiration for your latest or upcoming book cover design, check out our Book Cover Ideas Blog!