2020 Book Cover Trends That You Need To Follow!

Here are a few book cover trends that the designers need to follow to compete.

There are some basic requirements that the readers expect to see in the book cover, like appropriate typography, color contrasts, imagery and fonts.

Book cover that matches the tone of the book

No matter how many changes the market and the trends go through, the basic rule is that each book cover should have a good theme which goes exactly with the tone of the book. It is important that the readers understand the genre of the book as soon as she sees it. Hence, the book cover reflecting the theme is the most essential part of the design brainstorm process. 

The text Liar written with the a man in place of I of the word
Liar: A Memoir by Rob Roberge.

Minimalist designs 

Graphic designers are going by the saying “less is more” in terms of design they create for the book covers. These plain and simple designs are becoming really popular among the masses because they can commodiously represent the author’s name and the theme of the book. You are most likely to find book covers that just have the authors name or a simple image and same color tone. It helps to eliminate the excessive elements and just focus on the important elements that require the attention of the reader.

Some call it a design nirvana state where the bliss is found by removing all the excess noise.

Against Happiness by Eric G. Wilson
Against Happiness by Eric G. Wilson 

Against Happiness by Eric G. Wilson


Illustrative covers have been there in the market for a long time now. The fresh illustrations have been inspired by mid-century artists. There are more elegant illustrations used for describing the story. This art form can see a shift back to the classic style of designing.

Book cover with forest illustrations
In The Woods by Dale Bailey

Typography- using bold typography 

Typography is one of the most important element while creating a book cover. Use of bold typography is yet another trend that is being constantly used since the past couple of years to grab attention. Bold and capital lettering on the covers makes it easier for the viewer to read the title and it helps grab instant attention. 

Book cover with bold typography
The Godfather by Mario Puzo

Retro elements – Typography and fonts 

Retro is no doubt the oldest new trend. It would not be wrong to say that our generation is obsessed with the 70s and 80s. From fashion to book covers, retro is EVERYWHERE. There is a bit of nostalgia hidden in these designs that capture the essence of all the beautiful memories people associate with those times. We have already seen a few great book covers with beautiful retro illustrations and there is no doubt that this trend is here to stay.

Book cover with retro theme.
Still Me by Jojo Moyes

Floral Patterns

One can never go wrong with a floral pattern. Floral pattern designs have seen all the generations and genres. Earlier floral pattern was only preferred by the women authors and romance books but over the time, floral is pretty popular among all the gender authors and most genres. Some designers are doing a praiseworthy job by adding flowers to book covers even with typical genres such as horror and thriller. Here is an amazing article that talks about how floral patterns have become favorites in the publishing industry. https://www.vanityfair.com/style/2018/08/flower-print-bouquet-books-publishing-rodrigo-corral-raf-simons

Floral pattern themed book cover.
If you leave me by Crystal Hana Kim

Hand lettering book covers.

The handwritten text or hand-drawn elements that were highly populated for women and children’s books are now making their way in other genres too. Placing these elements on otherwise plain covers make them look authentic and custom-made. These elements make the impression of consideration and hard work. There is indeed a personal touch to these kinds of illustrations on the covers which makes a better impact on the readers. 

Black and white illustrations with handwritten title book cover.
The Unpassing: A novel by Chia- Chia Lin

Text- Images overlapping

This trend started in 2019 with the books such as Queenies by Candice Carty- Williams and Ginger Bread by Helen Oyeyemi. This kind of cover designs give a look of dimensions to the books. This trend just started recently because it stands opposed to the previous theories of design which believed that the title should not have anything overlapped with it so that the reader can easily read the title of the book. 

A typical book cover with font and picture overlapping on an orange background
Queenie by Candice Carty- Williams

Object focal point

This cover involves a focus on a single object in the background that highlights the genre and tone of the book. This cover design started with fantasy fiction but we expect it to flourish in other genres as well. With most fantasy fiction covers we usually witness a crown, a sword or a thrown highlighted as a point of focus. There is a minimal use of text to write the title and the author’s name. Such book covers bring the attention to an object that speaks of the story that is hidden inside the pages.

Fantasy fiction book cover with a sword as a focal point
Sword of Ruyn by R.G. Long

2020 Color trends-Black and white, Gen-Z yellow and Millennial pink

There are certain color trends that have seen a high in the past couple of years. The use of a black and white picture can never go out of style, no matter what century we are living in. We can always find bookshelves filled with black and white book covers. Black and white theme surprisingly stands out among the huge range of colorful

There are certain color trends that have seen a high in the past couple of years. The use of a black and white picture can never go out of style, no matter what century we are living in. We can always find bookshelves filled with black and white book covers. The Black and white theme surprisingly stands out among the huge range of colorful books. 

Millennial pink color started as a trend in 2017, leaving no industry as any exceptions. Another color that is making up to the popularity list is the Gen-Z yellow color that is excessively being used on all social media platforms. This new range of fresh colors is bringing a fresh wave to the boring color palate used before.

Gen- Z color book cover with flowers on it
The Ensemble by Aja Gabel
Millenial pink colored book cover
In the neighborhood of true by Susan Kaplan Carlton
The wolf by Leo Crew

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