Five Flavors of Dumb, Antony JonCover Notes is a new series I’ll be running every Monday. Rather than focusing on covers of books I’ve read, I’ll be writing about books I’ve never read and recording my first impressions of their covers. Each book will also have an Embarrasment Factor of between zero & five, with zero meaning “a totally awesome cover I want to write fan mail about” and five meaning “I’m ashamed to be seen with this in public.”

Five Flavors of Dumb was facing out when I first saw it, browsing through the shelves at my local bookstore. Even on the second to bottom shelf, it grabbed me, and I wanted to know more about the girl center stage.

Things I love about the cover: The font–style and color. Everything about the words on the cover screams “Hey! Pick Me Up!” even louder than the block of Sirius in my cupboard. I also love the way the author’s name is rendered.

The fade into the beaten up wall is really well done, and works well the top half of the image, and the lights. I’m really loving the two different worlds/reflections effect.

Things I’m not so hot on: The girl. It’s hard to be fair without knowing what the book is about, and I do like the photo, but she looks too smart to be on the cover of this book. Not because I think the “dumb” in the title refers to her, but rather because she’s observing and considering–my take is that she’s not the kind to make snap judgments. (That said, I do like the way she doesn’t fade into the background, but isn’t quite

Five Flavors of Dumb, by Antony Jon

Five Flavors of Dumb, by Antony Jon

spotlighted either. It definitely suggests some mystery.) I wish I could tell what’s on her shirt.

What I think it’s about: There’s not a lot to go on here–the girl gives nothing away, except, perhaps, a penchant for rock music and Uncle Sam, or Wonder Woman, or someone else who’s big on red, white, and blue. There’s a teensy hint of dystopia here for me, but real world dystopia…perhaps she’s just moved somewhere new and is trying to fit in? While also being up for a spot on American Idol?

Cover art by: Kristin Smith. Check out an interview with Kristin.

Embarrassment factor: 1 – the bright lights and band silhouette make me a feel little like I’d be carrying around an Apple iPod ad.

The Jacket Blurb

The Challenge: Piper has one month to get the rock band Dumb a paying gig.

The Deal: If she does it, Piper will become the band’s manager and get her share of the profits.

The Catch: How can Piper possibly manage one egomaniacal pretty boy, one talentless piece of eye candy, one crush, one silent rocker, and one angry girl? And how can she do it when she’s deaf?

Piper can’t hear Dumb’s music, but with growing self-confidence, a budding romance, and a new understanding of the decision her family made to buy a cochlear implant for her deaf baby sister, she discovers her own inner rock star and what it truly means to be a flavor of Dumb.

Read an excerpt of Five Flavors of Dumb @ author Antony Jon’s website.

Hmm..what do you think? 3/10 for guessing the plot, I think.

I am loving–seriously loving–the play in the title now, but I do wish there’d been more of a hint. Five Flavors of Dumb sounds like an incredible novel, and the cover doesn’t give enough away for me. I also love that her name is Piper, all things considered.

Overall: Eye-catching enough to get me to pick it up while browsing, but not if I were simply chasing the kidlet through the stacks. Take a look at the images in the interview with Kristin, too–there’s a whole other color scheme, which is really gorgeous.

What do you think about this cover? Would you buy a copy?

Updated, 8:08pm: added excerpt link

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