I absolutely judge books by their covers. This is especially true of non-fiction, but fiction as well. A cool cover is inviting and eye-catching! I like to point out interesting covers to library patrons when I'm doing readers advisory, too. There's a fun web site called The Book Cover Archive, which I love to browse through.
Here are some of my favorite book covers.
by Bill Wasik
The way each word repeats indicates the number of times the story is told. Simple, but eye-catching.
by Jennifer Traig
You can just picture someone with OCD taking a bag of M&Ms and putting them in careful rows by color. It illustrates the book's topic really well.
by George Orwell
(Essay in a collection called "Such, such were the joys & other essays")
I, for one, like English cooking. Make me some mushy peas any day! I have to admit that the English breakfast shown here is not so appetizing, though - especially the lower picture where they've blurred as if it were just one big pile of beans and eggs and stuff. I still like the cover.
by David Guterson
This is a book about a woman who sees the Virgin Mary. The cover, with it's close up of what I would assume represents the Virgin Mary, gives you the impression of someone watching over you. She's looking down, and she's really close. Religion aside, it's beautiful.
by Elizabeth Beckwith
Ha ha ha! That's just funny. The title is hilarious, and the people have that retro "perfect" look. The squeaky-clean mother and daughter just don't match up with the guilt and manipulation part of the title, which is hilarious!!
by Blanche McCrary Boyd
I have not read this book, but the cover is creepy. The words form an X over her, and she's shown as a negative. Does she die in the book? I don't know, but I would pick this off the shelf in a minute to find out.
by Jerome Charyn
Again, I haven't read this, but the cover indicates that Emily Dickinson had a secret life that was somehow scandalous. If her purple skirt were solid, she would have that late-1800s prude look. Instead, we see a black silhouette that implies something outrageous or even indecent.