On twitter's kidlitchat last night (every Tuesday, 8-9 CST #kidlitchat) a discussion got started on covers in children's literature. It seems in middle-grade there are a lot of "boy" based covers. Not that that these books are only for boys, but there happens to be scores of covers that have a lot more "boy appeal"--like the Percy Jackson series, the Artemis Fowl series, etc. Then there are more unisex middle-grade covers like the Clockwork Three, A Tale Dark and Grimm, The Invisible Order, etc.
After that, we hit the YA category and everything seems to change--drastically. Covers shift from adventure and mystery that any girl or boy would love, to heaps of covers with an attractive, thin, and let's be honest, alluring girl on the cover. Of course, there are exceptions to this rule (Hunger Games, Twilight, etc) and this is by no means a blanket statement, but what is your take on the typical YA cover? I'm not saying I don't like them, because some of them are pretty darn awesome and these girls look like they could kick some major arse!! I bought these books as a teen because I wanted to be these girls, so is this merely a selling tool by publishers? Do publishers do this because boy YA readership slows down compared to girls or is this why boy readership slows down--because all the covers are so darn--well--girlie?
Even the books with a guy on the cover, it's always a super-buff hot guy. What teen guy out with his buddies would stop at the local mall's B&N and buy that novel? What do you think???