New year, new us! Or, at least, a new look for Tanaz Bhathena‘s sweet contemporary YA, The Beauty of the Moment. Check out the adorable cover below plus TWO Q&As: one with Tanaz and one with the cover artist/designer, Emma Dolan!
Q&A with Tanaz Bhathena
How was the process for this paperback cover different than it was for the hardcover cover?
The thought process was different. The hardcover focuses on Susan’s dreams of being an artist and the illustrations are right out of her sketchbook. The paperback focuses on both Susan and Malcolm and their romance. Both embody different aspects of the book that I love.
What do you think of the new cover?
I get hit by a serious case of nostalgia whenever I see this cover; it takes me back to my own high school days. The colour palette reminds me of a Mississauga sunset and both Susan and Malcolm appear exactly the way I imagined them!
What is your favourite scene in The Beauty of the Moment?
Susan and Malcolm’s scene at Square One Shopping Centre (which is an homage to my BFFs) and Malcolm’s scene with his uncle Mancher, which is humorous and full of good advice.
What kind of feedback have you received about The Beauty of the Moment since it came out?
My favourite feedback for this book comes from teen readers because it was specifically written with them in mind. The best moment was during a teen girl book club (The Room Of Your Own in Toronto), when a reader said that Susan’s interactions with her mom helped her understand her own mother better.
What are you working on now?
I’m working on the sequel to Hunted by the Sky, my fantasy novel set in a medieval India-inspired world. The first book releases on June 23 2020, the sequel sometime in 2021.
What are your most anticipated releases of 2020?
The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes by Suzanne Collins, Don’t Read the Comments by Eric Smith,This Is All Your Fault by Aminah Mae Safi, and Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust.
What was your favourite read of 2019?
Patron Saints of Nothing by Randy Ribay.
Q&A with Emma Dolan
Did you read The Beauty of the Moment before starting on the cover?
I unfortunately wasn’t able to read it before starting the cover. As book designers we try to read the books as often as we can, but this was a tight turnaround so I relied on discussions with the editors, Lynne and Peter, to fill me in!
Were you given any guidance from the author/editor?
Yes, absolutely! My first step was to sit down with the editor to discuss the direction they wanted to take the cover. This book already had a beautifully illustrated hardcover, so it was important to get a sense of everyone’s goals for the new design, what we wanted to do differently, and why.
How did you choose the cover direction? What emotions/what kind of atmosphere were you trying to capture?
During my discussions with the editor, we narrowed down a loose concept and look for the illustration. Everyone felt it was very important to have the central character, Susan, on the cover, as well as to convey that it’s a love story. It can be tricky to depict characters on a cover that only exist in writing. The descriptions might be there on the page, but how that translates in the readers’ imaginations can vary significantly. Luckily, Tanaz was very helpful! She provided detailed descriptions of both characters, as well as the dynamic between them. Lastly, the book is set in Mississauga, and I wanted to give a little nod to that in some way. I based the colour palette on the beautiful sunsets we have here in Toronto and the GTA.
How did you create the cover?
I used a combination of Illustrator and Photoshop to create the illustration, and the final design was laid out in InDesign.
How many drafts/designs did you go through before it was “finished”?
This cover was somewhat unusual in that, apart from a few minimal colour and font revisions, the final cover is very close to the first draft I sent to editorial.
What are some other book covers you’ve worked on? Do you have any coming up?
I’m fairly new to PRHC, so all the covers I’ve worked on have yet to be released – or even printed! I believe the first book I will hold in my hands is a poetry collection by Nancy Lee. It’s always very exciting to finally get to see the finished book!
If you missed picking up The Beauty of the Moment when it came out in hardcover, you can grab the adorable new paperback when it comes out on June 23, 2020!
Make sure to follow Tanaz and Emma on social media as well.