January 25, 2013

Unobservant

So I realized something about myself recently, and as the title of this post suggests, I'm guilty of missing the sometimes pathetically obvious. Perhaps one of my worst offences relates to book covers and not seeing what's right in front of me. Really, it's almost like looking at those pictures that you have to practically cross your eyes to see the image hidden in them.

Okay, not really. I'm just unobservant, unseeing, oblivious...you get the idea.

Exhibit A:  Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore




I read Kristin Cashore's Bitterblue some time ago after winning an ARC of it. And yet somehow I failed to notice THE FACE behind the keys. I mean, really?! The eyeball is dead center in the key ring. Not to mention both Graceling and Fire employ the same technique on their covers as well. (The face in the sword and the face above the bow respectively.) I was visiting some blog or another yesterday and was kind of scanning the post when my eyes fell on the eyeball staring right back at me. I actually went over to my bookshelf to pick up my copy and verify that it did in fact have a face there too. (Because who knows, maybe the ARC didn't have the face or something? I don't know.)





Exhibit B:  What's Left of Me by Kat Zhang




So this week was kind of a two-fer (good gravy, I hate that expression) for feeling like a bit of a tool where cover discoveries were concerned. I was talking on the phone with my sister, visiting some blog or another again, when I finally saw it—the two heads. Or rather, the forward facing head and the silhouette of an upturned head. How on earth did I miss that?! Every time I saw this cover I focussed on the the fact that we're shown what could be considered a fragment of a face, which seemed fitting given the title. Not even once did I notice the silhouetted profile. How do you miss something like that?

What's left of me? A lingering sense of embarrassment and idiocy, that's what.




Exhibit C:  Delirium by Lauren Oliver



Well, would you look at that? It's another hidden face on the original cover of Lauren Oliver's Delirium. On the one hand, I read this on a Kobo where it appeared black & white and wasn't overly clear. But on the other hand, I saw this book sitting on the shelves at Indigo multiple times before it finally clicked, so really I have no excuse for failing to spot the obvious. I was visiting my sister's place, picked up her hardcopy of the book and almost dropped it when I saw what I'd thus far been missing. It's actually a little bit creepy, when you think about it. Like realizing that somebody's been watching you without your knowledge. (Okay, the latter is WAY more creepy than the former.)

All I can say is that I must have been delirious when I missed the face behind the words.
(Hardy har.)



And then there was the time that I missed about 3/4 of the Snow White references in Sydney White the first time I watched it. (Despite the fact that it was called Sydney White. Blatantly obvious, right?Altogether now: DUUUUUUHHHH!!! O_o

33 comments:

  1. You're not the only unobservant one. I'd never noticed the face on Bitter Blue or the double face on What's Left of Me until you pointed them out here.

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    1. Hah! That makes me feel so much better. It was kind of one of those "what the heck?!" moments, that's for sure. :)

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  2. Haha, it still took me awhile, just staring intently, to see the other face on What's Left of Me. That's awesome!

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    1. I really don't know how I didn't notice it before, because now it's all I can see. Like I said: unobservant. :P

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  3. It took me a while also to see the 2nd face in What's Left of Me and that was after I had an ARC, read it, had people tell me there was another face, try to find the face, ask again if there really WAS a 2nd face there....LOL. You are not alone~!!!

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    1. That's too funny! And here I thought I was the only one totally out of the loop, not in the know. Glad I'm not alone. :)

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  4. Jaime, I didn't see the face on BITTERBLUE's cover until a month or two ago when I read a random review that mentioned the creepy eye staring through the key. I was like... What? So, like you, I had to go to my bookshelf to confirm that there is, in fact, a face. Now it's pretty much all I see. You are not alone in your unobservant-ness (totally a word).

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    1. You're so right about it being all you can see now. I honestly can't figure out how I didn't see it before, especially considering it follows the same idea they used on the covers for GRACELING and FIRE. Whoops! Glad I'm not alone. :P

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  5. Hilarious, and recognizable. I didn't notice the face/eye on the Bitterblue cover either..

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    1. From the sounds of it, we're not the only ones. Hah! :P

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  6. The only one of these I caught was Delirium and that's because if you take off the book jacket, the actual cover is just a picture of Lena's face. That tipped me off, otherwise I probably wouldn't have noticed. I didn't catch the other two until you pointed them out. And can I just say the eyeball on Bitterblue is massively creepy? Centred in the key ring like that it looks like some weird Illuminati symbol or something.

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    1. Now I'm going to be scoping out every cover looking for hidden faces or staring Illuminati eyeballs. :P Here I thought I was the only one who didn't notice all of these background faces, but from the sounds of it I'm not alone.

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  7. Well, dang. Let me add my voice to the chorus of "me neither"s. Geez. Now I feel like I need to go stare at my books for a while...

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    1. I'm in good company here. I'm going to be staring at the covers of every book that comes out from now on, looking for the hidden faces/eyes/whatevers. :P

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  8. Haha, yeah, Delirium's the only one of those I caught. I'd been wondering if there was a second face in "What's Left of Me" for ages, even looking for it on my paperback copy, but I couldn't see it.

    And even after reading this post I couldn't see it. I had to stare at it for five minutes, trying to figure out how the left-hand grey could be a face, until I finally realised that the section on the RIGHT was where the second face was silhouetted.

    D'oh.

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    1. I would love to know just how many people who have seen these covers haven't seen the faces in the backgrounds. All this time I thought I was the only person not catching them, but from the sounds of it, I'm not alone. We're all going to be staring at every book cover from now on trying to see if there's a hidden face in it. :P

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  9. I'm right there with you. I never noticed any of these hidden faces. Fun post :)

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    1. Looks like we're all a little unobservant, judging from everyone's comments. :) Glad I'm not the only one.

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  10. You are not alone Jaime. Just the comments show that lots of smart, generally observant people missed these. I've not read any of these (I'm embarrassed to say), but have stared at the cover of What's Left of Me. I think the fact that the eye is off-kilter for the silhouette encourages your brain to skip over processing it. That's my official answer. :0) I read an early ARC of Susan Dennard's debut Something Strange and Deadly and that's the first time I recall really staring at the cover-- just because I thought it was so cool to be reading an early ARC and a book of a friend. Most of the time I am too busy jumping into the story.

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    1. Glad that I'm not alone. :) I think you might be onto something about the off-kilter eye drawing attention away from the silhouette. That makes good sense. I notice covers all the time (have favourites even), but apparently I only really see the top layer. I will be looking closer from now on. :)

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  11. I never noticed the face on the Bitterblue cover either! Mind. Blown. You definitely aren't alone Jamie!

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    1. Crazy, hey? I don't know how I missed it considering the other two in the series have the same thing going on. :)

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  12. Yep, didn't notice BITTERBLUE or WHAT'S LEFT OF ME, either!

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    1. Judging from the number of people who've said the same thing, I'm not feeling so alone anymore. :)

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  13. I'm joining the chorus of Bitterblue and What's Left of Me non-observers!

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  14. I haven't noticed any of those faces on the covers. It's definitely not just you ;) Thanks for pointing those out, they all look so cool!

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    1. It's funny because all I can see when I look at these covers now is the hidden faces. :)

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  15. I did see the Delirium face before, but I hadn't noticed the faces on the other covers until you pointed them out! Guess I'm unobservant, too. :)

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    1. There's apparently a bunch of us who didn't see the faces, so we're in good company. :)

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  16. Ha! I'd seen the face in Delirium (but it took me a while to notice it initially) but I had NO idea about Bitterblue and What's Left of Me! O_o

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    1. Now it's all I can see when I look at these covers. WHAT'S LEFT OF ME is the big one for me. Before I was seeing the empty grey/white space to the left, now I don't even notice it. It's all about the two faces now. :)

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  17. Oh, my, I have WHAT'S LEFT OF ME on my nightstand, and I didn't notice this, either! So much for us writers being super-observant! :)

    Don't feel bad, Jaime! Some days I don't notice that I've left the house in my pjs. No, seriously.

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