The Week Ahead in Reviews, Mini Rant on Covers and a classic Cocktail, the Manhattan

So the Olympics are over, sigh, and the amount of books I am reading is climbing back up to the normal teetering stack.  And with that comes the realization that I am seeing a ton or a lashing (a nod to the Brits) of covers with just the naked torso of a man on it.  No real connection to the story,  just a fabulous chest to gaze on.  Now don’t get me wrong.  I love looking at FT’s (fabulous torsos) but just a torso?  I mean how many books do you know that are written about Tommy Torso’s romance with Drew Torso?  Uh, none?  And if you know of one, please let me remain ignorant!

If you add a background or some touches to the figure that relate to the story, ok, I am behind that, a little.  But just a torso?  Am I the only one that thinks that’s lame or lazy?  Some of these stories had so many great elements to them that I kept thinking what a missed opportunity these covers presented.  Or I  would have loved to have seen “this” or “that” on the cover, but instead I get a FT.  Now these covers probably wouldn’t be so noticeable except that I am also seeing the same amount of outstanding, blow me away covers. Why the disparity?  Who chooses these covers? Is someone thinking “Let’s corner the market on the torso crowd?”  Or are they going “I need a cover for this and a torso will do”. If someone knows the procedure, please fill me in.  I feel a full blown cover rant coming on.  Look for it soon.  In the meantime, here is the week ahead, including the penultimate book in the Lost Gods series, Poison:

Monday:                                 Poison  (Lost Gods #4) by Megan Derr

Tuesday:                                 Inside The Beltway by Ellen Holiday

Wednesday:                           Alien ‘n’ Outlaw by KC Burn

Thursday:                               Phoenix Rising by Theo Fenraven

Friday:                                     Bedazzled by Pelaam

Saturday:                                 Good Bones by Kim Fielding

Cocktail of the Week:  The Manhattan


Dash Angostura Bitters
Dash orange bitters
1 tablespoon (1/2 ounce) sweet vermouth
5 tablespoons (2 1/2 ounces) rye whiskey
1 cup ice
1 (1/2-inch-thick) strip orange peel
1 non-maraschino cherry*

1 (4- to 5-inch) wooden skewer


In chilled cocktail shaker or pint glass, combine Angostura and orange bitters, vermouth, and rye whiskey. Add ice and stir until well chilled, about 20 seconds. Strain into chilled martini or coupe glass. Squeeze orange peel over drink, making sure oils fall into glass, then discard peel. Thread cherry onto skewer, place in drink, and serve.

By Scattered Thoughts

At over 50, I am ruled by my terriers, my gardens, and my projects. A knack for grubbing about in the woods, making mud pies, and tending to the injured worms, bugs, and occasional bird and turtle growing up eventually led me to working for the Parks. I was a park Naturalist for over 20 years, and observing Nature and her cycles still occupy my hours. From the arrival of Ruby-throated Hummingbirds in the Spring to the first call of the Snow Geese heading south in the Fall, I am entranced by the seasons. For more about me see my bio on my blog.

1 comment

  1. I think part of it is cost. Stock photos cost $ and if you can’t find a guy who has blue eyes and curly hair, or red hair and green eyes and full lips, you simply cut his head off and voila. Sure, really, that’s the hero. See his rippling abs? In some ways I’d prefer that to a horrid photoshop hair job on another guy. That just looks awful. I don’t mind NTs as you call them, as long as you say, there are elements from the story around them.

    I think Lour Harper’s (hope that worked) is a good NT cover. The red hoodie is in the story, the handcuff indicating BDSM, he line on the road representing being on the run. But sometimes you do wonder why the guy is on there.

    I also think someone once said headless covers sell better. True? Not sure but I suppose if you are quickly surfing through book covers looking for a hot m/m romance, one with two naked men on the cover likes spells “sex” more than a puppy sitting on a couch, no matter how appropriate the image to the story.


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