There is a lot of advice out there when it comes to author branding. Most exhort authors to ensure they have a brand that is recognisably them. Branding includes a number of areas such as author name, genre, book titles, and also, crucially, covers.
The cover above is for my forthcoming release, Killer's Crew. This is the fifth book in the DI Shona Mckenzie Mysteries. All my books have a similar layout. The bottom part of the cover is an image from Dundee where the books are set. The top half is an image which portrays something which happens in the book. The titles all have Killer's in them and there is always blood dripping from the writing.
The books are instantly recognisable as crime books. They have the Wendy H. Jones factor. Readers instantly know this is one of my books. Anyone in the know would recognise them as having something to do with Dundee. The name of the detective Shona McKenzie certainly sets them out as having something to do with Scotland.
Each book is a different colour so they stand out from each other. However, together they are branded as being part of the same series. They certainly stand out on the shelf. The covers for Killer's Countdown, Killer's Craft, Killer's Cross and Killer's Cut are below.
I am sure you will agree the cover designer has got the branding spot on. Cathy Helms of Avalon Graphics is an outstanding designer who takes great care to ensure that the covers meet the needs of her clients. In this series she has excelled herself.
One thing I will say about the covers. There is an argument that you should not put the book numbers on the cover as human nature means people think they should be read in order. However, readers like to know the number of the book in the series so I went with the readers views in this case. They are stand alone books and can be read in any order.
It is worth taking time to ensure that your branding reflects both your books and who you are. Well maybe not who I am unless I am a despotic serial killer. But you get my drift.
I have one more cover to present to you. This is for my free book DI Shona Mckenzie's Guide to Killing Your Boss. This is available form my website Shona is feisty, funny, sharp and dedicated. She also has the boss from hell. For the first time she shares her secrets of how you can bump him off. This book also doubles as ideas for deaths in your crime book so a double whammy.
If you would like to find out more about the books you can do so on my website or on my Amazon author page