Dawn Adams, art director at Sourcebooks Casablanca, discusses the cover design process for Hold Your Breath by Katie Ruggle.

“I wanted the cover to have a brightness without being garish on the colors,” Adams says. “I wanted light and bright but at the same time, cold, desolate, and rugged.”

“There was a note from the author that because he’s search and rescue, don’t put his finger on the trigger. That would be unsafe.”

“I told the artist that I wanted to somehow do a split perspective—to somehow give the feeling that he’s actually in the water. That allowed him to shoot more full-figure.”

“Katie Ruggle is brand new to us, a full debut. Normally when you start with a debut author, the name is not as important on the cover. [But] if I brand her big, people will think she’s important and that they just missed her and need to read her.”

“In my experience, when you try use a couple [on a romantic suspense cover], it can look like a really bad movie poster really quickly.

With a guy only, I can focus on the hero, his strengths, the actions that make him attractive. And women love abs.”

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