Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Cover Contemplations

Let Me Call You Sweetheart by Mary Higgins Clark
Originally, a plain, vanilla colored cover with a single sweetheart rose below the title, Let Me Call You Sweetheart has gone through some major changes since its initial publication. The first mass market paperback in the US is the copy I have of this book. It is blue with a tiny space where a picture of Suzanne Reardon’s death scene is contained along with several other little things in the book such as a frame and jewelry that was stolen. I really don’t like that dot in the middle of the book advertising that Higgins is a bestselling author though. The UK paperback cover is more about the plastic surgery that was what made Kerry look into the murder in the first place. I don’t particularly like this one because besides the syringe and the scalpel it’s somewhat generic and even with them it could be about anything.

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet, correct? Well nearly all of the foreign covers for Let Me Call You Sweetheart were published under different names. The Spanish version of this book translates to I Can Not Forget Your Face and while I thought the one with the face is interesting because of the way it’s shaded, the red one just looks like a cheap knockoff of the US paperback. The Finnish cover (translates to Horror Around Town) reminds of me the US paperback with the style however I’m not sure what that particular scene is supposed to be. Maybe the doctor’s loft?

Translating to A Face so Beautiful and Cold, the German cover of the woman really portrays that and makes her seem like she’s made of marble. The blue one with half a face just looks odd to me but I like the roses in the trashcan. It’s not in the book, (the roses are scattered on Suzanne’s dead body) but it makes a powerful statement even if the actual photo looks a little flat and one-dimensional.

Of all the covers that feature a photo of Suzanne Reardon’s murder scene, only the Japanese version shows her face. It’s a great photo and looks somewhat like what I imagined her to look like. Supposedly she was horribly strangled in the book (I say supposedly because the murder took place years before the start of the book) and she merely looks as though she were sleeping here. I still really like this one though. The Italian version of Let Me Call You Sweetheart for some reason translates as A Blow to the Heart, which makes no sense in terms of the book’s story. The only good cover I found of this has a rose over the pond of blood, which is kind of gross to me. The Hungarian title of this book translates to Call Me Darling and is virtually the same as the US hardcover except it’s on a white background and the rose is larger.

Father’s Finest is what the Dutch called their edition of this mystery, which is a great name for the book in my opinion. I couldn’t find a bigger photo of the cover but from what I can see of this one it looks like this could be Kerry, the main character of the book (the briefcase in her hand because she’s a lawyer) and if it is, so far this is the only cover I’ve found which features her. Rosenmordet is the title of the Swedish cover and I can't find a decent translation so I don't know what it means. Something murder, maybe Rose Murder? Anyway I do like the cover of this one though the tiny picture of, I’m guessing Suzanne, appears to be nude. I found out that the Polish title translates to A Death Among the Roses but I couldn’t find a cover for it unfortunately. The French title Ce Que Vivent les Roses doesn’t translate too well to English (What Roses Live) exactly and the only original cover I found has those giant roses. I’m sure there are others out there but these are just ones I found. I had a blast looking up all of these and I hope you enjoyed reading this post too. Have you ever seen so many covers that feature roses?!


  1. Wow! While I can't say I really like any of the covers, the different versions and translations of the title are very interesting.

  2. This was very interesting, I had no idea that books differed too much from country to country...I love that you have done this and I hope you keep doing it in the future, It would be something very specific I would come to your blog for.

  3. Interesting post. I've read some Mary Higgins Clark but never this particular book. Are the roses significant to the story or is just one of those things that got passed on from cover to cover?

  4. Diary of an Eccentric: Yeah I wasn't overly fond of any of them either but there were some ones that were definitely better than others. The title translations was interesting though.

    Summer Ross: I've been doing it for a little while but this was the first book I've reviewed that's been published in other countries under other covers and names. I plan on doing this for awhile because I think it's kind of fun lol. Hope to see you again!

    Jen D.: Yeah, there were roses scattered over the murder victim.

    Juju: Too many roses lol.

  5. I love looking at different cover variations for books. This one had a nice variety.

    I liked your review of it, too.

  6. Wow, that was a lot of work unearthing all of those covers. I do kind of like the one with the roses in the trash can, too.

  7. Covers play a major role in my book-buying habits but I've never dugged deep into the different versions of a book. Specially if I really really liked that series... maybe I am just too cowardly and didn't want to know how the publishers messed up the books I like... Or I might end up wanting to buy more copies of the books I like in different covers... costly :)

    That MHC books looks like the publishers didn't do too bad...

  8. Interesting post. It is not so much the cover, though important, but the title translation that interested me. I wondered why it varied so much. that left me wondering about my own book, a fantasy, which will soon be published as an e-book via Amazon. The title is 'The Treasures of Carmelidrium.' How could someone change that and why? I found you through 'Summers voice' blog.
    N. R. Williams, fantasy author

  9. Stephthebookworm: Thank you!

    Paxton: Thanks! I had fun putting it together.

    Bermudaonion: It did take a little while but I enjoyed doing it. I really like the symbolism behind that cover.

    Cherry: Me too but I enjoy learning about different covers if I accidentally stumble across them.

    N.R. Williams: I really did like the title changes too. I hope you get good titles in other languages! Thanks for stopping by.

  10. great post tink. I like that very first cover, its nice and simple.
    I dont like the spanish ones. I like looking at different versions of book covers too.

  11. I was just curious about the cover of let me call you sweetheart but I still like the first one with the single sweetheart rose.I already read this book.
    You did a lot of effort in this site.Nice


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