Drift Away: My Top Ten Favorite Water-Themed Book Covers

top ten tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a fun weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is Cover Theme Freebie: “literally anyyyything about covers….top ten covers that scream Spring, ten books with ice cream on the cover, ten books with blue covers, etc.”  I decided to go with covers that feature water imagery. I don’t know what it is about covers with water on them, maybe it’s because I grew up with a waterfront view and so they remind me of home or maybe it’s just all of those vibrant blue and green hues, but whatever the reason, I’m always drawn to them.  Below are some of my favorites – some are simply beautiful and serene, some are more surreal, and some are even just plain creepy, but I find them all equally enchanting.

My Top Ten Favorite Water-Themed Book Covers


1. LIFE OF PI by Yann Martel

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3.  ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE by Anthony Doerr

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4. SALT TO THE SEA by Ruth Septys

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6. BEAUTIFUL RUINS by Jess Walter

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7. DREAMLAND by Sarah Dessen

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8. FEAR THE DROWNING DEEP by Sarah Glenn Marsh

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9. SHE’S COME UNDONE by Wally Lamb

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10. BEACH MUSIC by Pat Conroy

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Question:  Are you attracted to covers that feature water imagery?  What are some of your favorites?

34 replies
  1. Louise
    Louise says:

    There;s something about water and the sea that always looks beautiful. I especially love Fear the Drowning Deep. The colours in her dress and the water’s surface are gorgeous!
    My Cover-themed TTT

  2. Kate @ Midnight Book Girl
    Kate @ Midnight Book Girl says:

    It’s true, I have tons of books that feature water. It’s definitely something people connect with, and I know it’s an image that will make me at least pick the book up. 🙂

    • Suzanne
      Suzanne says:

      Same here! If there’s water on the cover, I’ll at least pick it up even if it’s not typically a book I’d otherwise consider.

  3. Angela
    Angela says:

    I love all of these! I like the graphic quality of the Huckleberry Finn and Life of Pi covers. It’s also interesting how the covers don’t need to be blue to indicate water.

    • Suzanne
      Suzanne says:

      I really like the Huckleberry Finn cover too. I’d actually prefer that one to the one I have in my collection.

  4. Charlotte Burt
    Charlotte Burt says:

    Water is a lovely subject for a book cover and surprisingly i have read a couple of your choices. (life of pi and she’s come undone) .

  5. Jordan
    Jordan says:

    Ooh, what a great cover theme to pick! I love all of these, which I think is partly helped by the fact that my favorite color is blue. 🙂 I particularly love The Ocean at the End of the Lane’s cover. Great list!

  6. Cori @ bibliopathic tendencies
    Cori @ bibliopathic tendencies says:

    I don’t know what it is, but there’s something I love about books with water themed covers. I think Salt to the Sea is my favorite! That cover of Huckleberry Finn is super cute too. Thanks for sharing. (:

    • Suzanne
      Suzanne says:

      I do too. I was telling someone else that I’m so drawn to the water themed covers that I’ll even pick up books that I normally wouldn’t even consider reading. It might be just to stare at the cover and then put it back down, but I’m at least initially drawn to it by the water.

  7. Greg
    Greg says:

    Ooh you did water- related too! I love covers with water. The Life of Pi is awesome, and I like that Huckleberry Finn too. Beautiful Ruins is amazing. Salt to the sea just has that stormy look that I often like with water covers.

  8. Kelly @ Here's to Happy Endings
    Kelly @ Here's to Happy Endings says:

    These are all such pretty covers! I love water themed covers – I think my favorite from this list is probably going to be Salt to the Sea – it is such a haunting cover. This was such an awesome post.

    • Suzanne
      Suzanne says:

      I love that cover too, so much so that it made the list even though I haven’t even read the book yet. It’s sitting in my TBR pile and I just keep staring at the beautiful cover.

    • Suzanne
      Suzanne says:

      Isn’t it amazing? I didn’t know who Neil Gaiman was when I first picked up that book. It was strictly the cover that drew me in.

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