readergirlz is a literacy and social media project for teens, awarded the National Book Foundation's Innovations in Reading Prize. The rgz blog serves as a depot for news and YA reviews from industry professionals and teens. As volunteers return full force to their own YA writing, the organization continues to hold one initiative a year to impact teen literacy. All are welcome to "like" us on Facebook!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Cover Stories: A Girl Named Mister by Nikki Grimes

A Girl Named Mister, by Nikki Grimes, came out last fall. Kirkus Reviews says, "This novel in poetry looks clearly at both teen pregnancy and struggles with faith. Mister is exceptionally well characterized...The language is intimate and immediate."

Diva Lorie Ann wrote about it recently on this blog (Nikki is a member of the readergirlz Circle of Stars) and the cover is one that I've stared at a bit in the bookstore, so I had to ask Nikki about the back story. Here she is:

"OMG, I am so in love with the current cover, I'd completely forgotten what it took to arrive at it! I had no musings on a cover when I wrote the text. I never do. But when it comes to covers, I definitely know what I do or don't like when I see it.

"I remember the original cover proposed to me (right), and I shudder. It featured a young girl who was too mature, and worldly-wise for Mister, and a very stilted image of Mary, which did not align with the fresh-faced young teenager I had in mind. In fact, I wrote Mary as though she and Mister were the same age, while the Mary they had first chosen appeared considerably older. I expressed my concerns to my editor, and the designer went back to work on a new comp. Boy, am I glad!

Read the rest of Nikki's Cover Story at melissacwalker.com.

PS-Watch the trailer, starring the cover model:


Micol Ostow said...

That blue is so striking!

Lorie Ann Grover said...

I found I am attracted to the first cover Nikki didn't care for. I understand her concerns, but it is compelling. The second is beautiful and striking as well, of course!

B. A. Binns said...

I agree with the author and love that second cover. The single picture of the girl is striking and makes me want to know more about what's happening inside her head.

emii said...

I've never thought to wonder about the story behind a cover before. This was a really interesting post!