I have to tell you a secret: I'm a complete judger of books by their cover.
Maybe not so much with romance because romance novels have covers that are all relatively the same - bodice rippers; woman and man leaning in to each other about to kiss, but not really; no head but body + gown of woman...
And seeing that I've read romances for a good seven years, the covers come together and become a little blurry. The flower covers mean that they were published a long time ago, the books in the nineties were most commonly the bodice rippers, then there were the seductive-pose covers between male and female. Currently, the trend seems to be "clinch" covers (which sucks, by the way) and holograms with nifty shininess.
However, I was appropriately horrified when I saw the cover to Julia Quinn's next release - The Lost Duke of Wyndham.
Full, very realistic faces of male and female!
And it makes it worse that I don't find either to be very attractive; it's meddling with my creative visualization skills!
What's going on in the mind of the (presumed) heroine? She looks like a raptor! I'd be very scared if I was the dude with longish hair and ripped shirt.
I am fully aware that many authors have no say in their covers, and that one has to be a huge household author (James Patterson, Nora Roberts...) in order for their words to have any clout.
So, my question is: Publishers, what on earth were you thinking? The cover is neither romantic nor is it attractive. C'mon, people! Work with me here!