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Behind the Book Scenes: Repackaging the Paperback Cover for BOUND TO YOU

A manuscript lives many lives before it goes to print as a book, and a book lives a long life after it hits the shelves, too. It might seem that once a hardcover book is in your hands—a physical object—it has reached its final form. It’s categorized in a certain way and appears in a certain part of the bookstore or website. For instance, it is either a YA novel or it’s not.

But a lot can happen after publication, especially between the hardcover pub date and the release of the paperback edition. Not every book is converted to paperback, and there are many considerations for this. Sometimes, in making changes to the book for the paperback edition, publishers are responding to a new opportunity in the market.

When Bound to You was first selected for publication, the Swoon community loved its heat and tension. The sexy love story made this a favorite on the site, so we knew that the cover had to maintain that “crossover appeal,” meaning that it would be positioned as a YA book but still attract readers who are a bit older than those in the traditional YA age range.

For the hardcover edition, Liz Dresner designed this gorgeous cover for fans of YA paranormal romance.

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When it came time to consider a paperback edition, we wondered if there were readers in the adult market who weren’t stumbling across this book while browsing because they were only looking at the adult shelves. The paperback presented a great opportunity to reach out to that group.

So for the paperback edition, we had two tasks:

1. We wanted a cover that would tell the community of adult romance readers, “This is a book you will love, too!” and,

2. We wanted to make sure it was somewhere they would see it.

Let’s start with the second. The categorization of a book is partly determined by codes, called BISAC codes, that publishers select from a predetermined list and attach to the edition. These codes feed out to booksellers and online retailers and give them information about the category of the book, as well as the content.

For instance, a teen novel about a camping trip might carry the BISAC code for YOUNG ADULT FICTION / Sports & Recreation / Camping & Outdoor Activities, while an adult romance set in the Wild West might carry the code for FICTION / Romance / Western.

So we switched the BISAC codes for Bound to You from YOUNG ADULT FICTION to FICTION, while maintaining the part of the data that let booksellers know this was a paranormal romance.

With booksellers alerted to the new categorization, we had to create a cover that would work for the intended audience. So Liz designed something completely new for the paperback edition, something that centered the red-hot romance.

Aaaaaand, here we have it . . .

The new paperback cover!

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We think this cover is perfect for Bound to You’s second life as an adult romance novel, and we are so excited to see it in the hands of old and new readers alike! The paperback edition hits shelves on April 9th.

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Val O.

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