Judging a Cover by Its Book: Choose the Cover Direction for THE MIDNIGHT DANCE!

TMD four covers feature

Cover voting is now closed. Thanks for all your help!

Hello, Swooners!

We have barely been able to contain ourselves this past week, and now we finally get to show you the four cover options for Nikki Katz's recently renamed The Midnight Dance! In case you need a refresher, here's the synopsis of this haunting story:

"17-year-old Penny doesn’t want to dance a single step more, which is a problem as she’s one of the lead dancers at the Grande Teatro—a finishing school that produces the finest ballerinas in Italy. The Grande Teatro is run by the mysterious Master, who keeps his girls in line with quiet, private talks that they can’t remember in the morning, conducting them as though they’re just pretty puppet dolls with strings. But it’s the only life Penny has ever known.

Until it isn’t. New flashes of conflicting memories, memories of a life before the estate, convince Penny that everything is not as it seems. With the help of the audacious kitchen boy, Cricket, Penny becomes determined to escape the fantasy of the Grande Teatro in search of her lost reality. But some strings are not so easily broken…."

Swoon designers KB, Rich D., and Carol L. (helping to design for Swoon for the first time!) have put together four gorgeous cover directions for you to choose from, and have shared some thoughts about their inspiration behind each one. Remember, the below images aren't necessarily final. These are just directions, so there will probably be some tweaks made before the book hits the shelves. (Want to see how a cover goes from concept to final? Click here.)

To view enlarged images, right click the image to view it in a new tab. Cover voting will close at noon EST on Wednesday, Nov. 9.

KB TMD Illusion

KB's Illusion Cover

Dancers make such striking, iconic images (which is why you'll notice we included one on every cover direction). This direction was inspired by those beautiful ballet and dance posters you'll see all over New York City. We think the ghostly image superimposed over the clock face and the creepy woods fit the gothic flavor of the story really well.


RD TMD Woods

Rich D.'s Woods Cover

We love the dark, atmospheric mood of this direction, which we think really captures the essence of the story. The image provides a dual meaning, where it could represent a particularly emotional part of a dance routine, but it could also be a moment from Penny's terrifying escape through the woods bordering the estate. Fun fact about this direction: The model is also the photographer! How cool is that?


KB TMD Dancer

KB's Dancer Cover

I added the "strings" connecting the letters of this font to call back to the theme of puppetry and control in the book. If this cover direction is chosen, we would keep playing around with different dancer images and poses. Right now this one is a little too basic. (Although we do love the idea of the dancer's arms pointing towards midnight!)



KB's and Carol L.'s Clock Cover

The idea to include a clock for this cover direction actually came from our very own Lauren Scobell! We like how this image, like the others, doesn't show us the model's face. We prefer covers that allow the reader to envision what a character looks like for themselves. If this cover direction is chosen, we would probably go extra fancy and incorporate some gold foil into the final book jacket.

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Swoon Reads Staff

For more information, check out the "Meet the Team" section of our About page (swoonreads.com/about).

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