The Blood of Angry Men!
I started my third year of Uni today and today’s prompt for the #FinnFuryRevolution is Blood of Angry Men! I would relate this to me being mad at uni starting so early in the year, but I am so excited to be back at school again.
This prompt was followed by the phrase Red Books. This gave me the idea to talk about the power of the colour of book covers and how they impact the readers choice to pick up the novel, and their first impressions of the novel prior to even reading the blurb.
On my shelf, there is a stack of red books (as shown above) which I haven’t completed, plus multiple red covered, and red-spined novels littered around my shelves.
Before I go into how cover artists, publishers and people of the book industry try to make us feel things by using the colour red on books, I will go into some psychological explanations of the colour red.
How the colour RED influences our behaviour:
From what I gathered, the colour brings forth the feelings of both love and hate as it is the colour of Cupid and the Devil. In some countries such as India and China, women wear red at weddings associated with love; but sex districts are also known as “red-light districts”, this showing relation to evil and the Devil.
An interesting thing about the colour red is how we react to it in terms of our biology. As human beings, we flush red in the face when we are embarrassed, in love, or flirtatious and seeing this in other humans gives us a positive or negative feeling depending on what the message is.
RED TURNS HEADS!
It is proven that candidates on red carpets, awards, etc. are more likes by the viewers than the others. Men also approach women at the bar who are wearing red lipstick, red dresses, or other red makeup/ clothing items. Most times in the animal kingdom, red indicated danger, poison, blood and potential death.
Reading through an online article from the Scientific American MIND by Martinez-Conde and Macknik, they provided some extra reading on cases regarding how the colour red impacts the mind. I have copied them out below, but you can read the full article via the link above.
"Fire Truck Visibility: Red May Not Be the Most Visible Color, Considering the Rate of Accident Involvement with Fire Trucks. Stephen S. Solomon and James G. King in Ergonomics in Design, Vol. 5, No. 2, pages 4–10; April 1997. Sporting Contests: Seeing Red? Putting Sportswear in Context. Candy Rowe, Julie M. Harris and S. Craig Roberts in Nature, Vol. 437, page E10; October 27, 2005. Romantic Red: Red Enhances Men's Attraction to Women. Andrew J. Elliot and Daniela Niesta in Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol. 95, No. 5, pages 1150–1164; November 2008. Does Red Lipstick Really Attract Men? An Evaluation in a Bar. Nicolas Guéguen in International Journal of Psychological Studies, Vol. 4, No. 2, pages 206–209; June 2012."
Okay, so now we know a little about how humans – and animals – feel when they ‘see red’, but how do the species of Bookaholics react to the same colour?
How Do Bookaholics React To The Colour Red? And Why Make Book Covers Red?
The main genres of novels that have red covers are from the following: horror, mystery, fantasy/ sci-fi, or anything with heavy bloodshed, drama and murder in it.
The following passage is found on the blog #AmReading: “A bold color, red conveys excitement, passion, fear, and aggression. Because of all the energy associated with the color, it makes sense that it is often a color chosen to be featured for thriller or horror novels. If you’re looking for this type of novel, chances are your eye will be drawn to the red cover.”
The books pictured above, are both of the high fantasy genres, and both have very vibrant red covers! A list of more books with red covers can be found on Goodreads at this link. As mentioned above, these books are predominantly of the fantasy, mystery, and horror genre.
The main reasons that red is used on the cover of the aforementioned books is due to the link between the colour and how red has a strong association with blood and heightented emotions for the reader. This also gives the reader an idea of what the book might be about too. The amount of red used can influence the reader too. Just by toning down the colour – amount and intensity – will decrease the reader’s emotional connection and the books connotation with the idea of blood and gory themes. The opposite is also true.
I hope you all learnt something in this post. I certainly did. How do books with red covers make you feel? I always feel confused and kind of on edge when I see books with red covers, especially if I don’t know what the book is about.
I’m just going to add in here that I reached 4 years of blogging today! I am so proud of my progress so far and the growth of Jasper and Spice over its four years. From not knowing anything about blogging at age 16, to being a day off from turning 20 and seeing the progress I’ve made and reflecting on all the work I have put into this site. I just want to thank all of you for reading, liking, commenting and contributing to my baby, Jasper and Spice in any way you have. This support has given me the motivation and confidence to write and improve, even start a YouTube channel!
Do you have many red books?
With Love Bree xx
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