THE Gothic Cover
Click a Group Below Alphabetically by Publisher
Additional Scans -- More Web Pages Added in 2014
This is a continuation of "Ladies in Peril," but, while the pictured damsels are in obvious distress, there seems to be little immediate danger.
Instead, this section is designed to illustrate the sheer number of covers with an identical artistic theme. No genre relied so heavily on a single pictorial image as did this one. I am going to guess that more than one-half of all gothic novels used it, undoubtedly for one purpose alone: marketing. For more information, please click HERE, and then return to this page.
To be included in this section, the covers had to display the following traits:
1) The woman depicted is alone, out-of-doors, and seemingly frightened
2) She is shown in the foreground of the illustration
3) There is a large house, castle, or other structure behind her, but she is never moving toward it (she may be glancing back at it)
4) She is wearing an evening dress, gown, cape or lingerie
In about 80% of these illustrations, there is a single light burning in an upstairs window of the building.
The illustration rarely has anything at all to do with the novel.
The artistic merits of many of these illustrations are questionable. They were often produced in a very short period of time (as were the novels they adorned), and the art directors at the various publishers didn't seem to hold the illustrations to the same high standards they insisted for other works.
NOTE: The BookScans Database acquired so many more of these cover scans in 2013, that I was unable to simply merge them into the existing web pages. Instead, I just started over again with five more pages of "Additional Scans."
(The picture shown above is a wonderful original illustration by Robert Maguire. Courtesy of Lynn Maguire.)
Updated March 2014