I've noticed that the style for crime fiction covers these days seems to be vague and inoffensive. Soft-focus landscapes or city scapes, roads, bridges, shadowy figures - seldom anything that overtly portrays or even suggests violence. To me, these covers seem boring. Do they really help sell books? Are the publishers afraid of being tasteless or shocking?
I did the cover illustrations for both my books, and they really grab people's attention. I was a visual artist before I became a novelist, and they're in an expressionistic style which often reminds people of Munch. But I've decided the second one, for Eldercide, is just too frightening, so I've decided to tone it down a bit. (I have this option because I work with a print-on-demand publisher.)
I'm also retitling the book Evening Falls Early, but that's a topic for another discussion, and you can read more about it on my blog, where you can also view the illustrations. But I'd love to hear what others think. How much say do you have about the covers for your own books? And do you think the publishers play it too safe?