New Novels in Soft Covers

Cowley, Malcolm
May 1954
New Republic;5/3/54, Vol. 130 Issue 18, p16
This article focuses on novels. A peculiarity of paper-back publishing is that the book itself, or rather the front cover of the book serves as its principal advertising display. There are four features on the cover that help to sell a pocket-size novel. These are: skyline, title of the novel, author's name, and a scene from the story. Almost always the scene is intended to suggest one of the universal human emotions. Sexual desire is regarded as the strongest of these, although the emotions suggested may also be horror, curiosity, or combativeness. The items of merchandise that have actually been popular on the newsstands, are usually novels with a strong story line, lots of action, and other sure-fire ingredients.


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