Ink is Thicker Than Water: Cover Reveal + giveaway!

July 12, 2013 2013, amy spalding, giveaway, tonya 34

As you may remember, Amy Spalding’s The Reece Malcolm List was my first MOTHER OF PEARL I LOVE THIS book of 2013. It left me happy, cheeks aching with a giddy grin that just wouldn’t quit, and hungry for more of Amy Spalding’s brand of humor and heart.

Luckily, we don’t have long to wait. Amy Spalding’s next novel, Ink is Thicker Than Water, is out from Entangled Teen in December, and we’re so pleased to host the official cover reveal!
So, without further ado…

For Kellie Brooks, family has always been a tough word to define. Combine her hippie mom and tattooist stepdad, her adopted overachieving sister, her younger half brother, and her tough-love dad, and average Kellie’s the one stuck in the middle, overlooked and impermanent. When Kellie’s sister finally meets her birth mother and her best friend starts hanging with a cooler crowd, the feeling only grows stronger.

But then she reconnects with Oliver, the sweet and sensitive college guy she had a near hookup with last year. Oliver is intense and attractive, and she’s sure he’s totally out of her league. But as she discovers that maybe intensity isn’t always a good thing, it’s yet another relationship she feels is spiraling out of her control.

It’ll take a new role on the school newspaper and a new job at her mom’s tattoo shop for Kellie to realize that defining herself both outside and within her family is what can finally allow her to feel permanent, just like a tattoo.

Isn’t that cover adorable? She looks like someone I want to know. (And whose closet I’d like to raid.) Add Ink is Thicker Than Water to your GoodReads shelf, or pre-order your copy on Amazon!
Read on for a chance to win a signed copy of The Reece Malcolm List and some awesome swag, along with a very cool look into the making of a book cover by Ms. Spalding herself.

The Making of a Book Cover: Amy Spalding Style

Since I was lucky enough to have such great results with the cover for my first book, The Reece Malcolm List, my publisher (Entangled) agreed to let me manage my cover for Ink Is Thicker than Water.

I knew I wanted to have the Reece cover photographer, Jessie Weinberg, shoot this cover, and she agreed to design as well. Knowing what phenomenal design work she does, I was thrilled. We spent a lot of time talking about different concepts and how they’d tie in with the book, but one thing we knew for sure was that the cover had to involve a tattoo.

We finally settled on a concept we loved, and sent it off to The Powers That Be. They loved our idea but wanted it brighter and less angsty, which was fine with me, really. I don’t really write angsty books, so they were right. They also were adamant that the tattoo on the cover not be a design element, but part of the actual photography.

I myself have a lot of tattoos. So many, in fact, that I couldn’t tell you off the top of my head. I’d have to start inventorying my body. So I guess I’m something of an expert. I knew my regular tattoo guy, Mike Erwin at Studio City Tattoo would do a great job, so Jessie and I met with him to talk about the photoshoot and what we needed.

Next we had to find a model! Luckily Reece’s model had a friend she recommended for this shoot, and I knew as soon as I saw her photos that she was perfect for Kellie. 

We did a test shoot with a printout of the title tattoo design to make sure the angle and framing would be right. From that we learned what size the temporary tattoo needed to be, and that we needed way more light than shooting indoors would provide.

We scheduled the real shoot, but that meant I had to figure out how to apply a temporary tattoo. Mike got some advice from a makeup artist friend, and it turned out to be super easy! So easy in fact that I made a bunch of temporary tattoos, and applied one to myself to test it out…and I kind of loved it.

We ended up shooting the cover on my apartment’s balcony, cloudy Los Angeles standing in for St. Louis, just down the street from the park where we shot the Reece cover. I love that my neighborhood is secretly in both shots.  

Then there was a ton of back and forth about finalizing the cover, but Jessie’s final design is beautiful, and I love it!


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Enter to win!

To celebrate Ink’s cover reveal, Amy is giving away one SIGNED copy of The Reece Malcolm List, plus an Ink is Thicker Than Water temporary tattoo. One other lucky reader will win a signed The Reece Malcolm List bookmark, as well as an Ink is Thicker Than Water temporary tattoo.

All you need to do is leave a comment telling us what bookish tattoo you would get (or even better: what bookish tattoo you already HAVE), and leave your name and email in the Rafflecopter form! Don’t forget that you may also earn additional entries by tweeting daily, sharing the contest on your blog/Tumblr/Facebook/Pinterest, etc.

Open to U.S. and Canadian residents aged 18 and older, or 13 and older with parental permission. See complete rules on the entry form. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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34 Responses to “Ink is Thicker Than Water: Cover Reveal + giveaway!”

  1. Moni

    I’m too fickle to ever get a tattoo- I’d want to have a different one within a week, I swear!

    Needless to say, I find them to be pretty interesting, as long as they have some value or meaning to the wearer that can be easily told. I don’t think its worth getting a tattoo just for the sake of saying you have one, but if there is a quote or design that means something to you, then I think they can be really cool.

    The cover tattoo is really interesting. I’m going to have to find a copy of this once it comes out. I like the concept, as well as the concept behind The Reese Malcolm List. They look really good!!

    You can find me at Cloud 9 Shelf.

    • tonya

      I totally agree; having a tattoo just for the sake of it is pretty moronic. Why etch something into your skin if it won’t still mean something to you in ten or twenty years?

    • tonya

      The Reece Malcolm List was such a fun read! I hope you’re able to read soon. :)

  2. Christina

    Gosh, this is a great question. I don’t know what I’d get tattooed or where. I’d like something small, pretty, but really meaningful. Maybe a book on the ankle? :-)


    ensconcedya at gmail dot com

  3. Kim

    If I ever get a tattoo, it would be inspired by some book I read. I love that the author was in charge of making her own cover! That’s such a great idea. I mean, she obviously put so much effort into writing her book and making it as great as possible so having control over her cover is great. Sometimes those can really hinder people picking up a book or the author ends up not liking what their publisher picked. I love the cover :)

    • tonya

      The cover is so crucial, and I understand wanting it to be in the hands of a professional, but I wish authors had more say in the final product. It makes such a difference.

  4. Angela Chen

    I don’t have a tattoo, and as much as I want one, I honestly think I’d be too scared to get one. But I would totally get a Ink is Thicker Than Water. It looks so nice!

    • tonya

      I felt the same for a very long time, and one day just did it on impulse and it was easy breezy! It’s never as bad as you imagine it to be. ;)

  5. Sam (Realm of Fiction)

    The model is so pretty! This isn’t my usual sort of read, but I love the cover. I like that you can’t actually see her whole face — that’s something I’ve never been too keen on, and it just about works well here. Thanks for sharing! :)

    • tonya

      I totally agree; I hate book covers that show the model’s face. I like to be able to picture my own character.

  6. Amy

    I really wanted to read The Reese Malcolm list, but never got around to it. (TBR pile is far too large at the moment) This one sounds really great, and I love the cover!!

    • tonya

      I know the feeling of the towering TBR. The Reece Malcolm List is a great summer afternoon / beach read, though, if you ever find yourself in the position. ;)

  7. Joyous Reads

    I haven’t read any of Amy Spalding’s work but I trust you ladies. :) To be honest, a tattoo have never crossed my mind. I’m just too much of a chicken sh*t to get one. Lol.

    • tonya

      I compared The Reece Malcolm List to Anna in terms of tone and humor. Just a feel good read. :)

      I always wanted a tattoo but was TERRIFIED of needles, but did it on an impulse once and am completely addicted now. It’s never as bad as you imagine it will be. ;)

  8. Erin

    SO looking forward to this book! A bookish tattoo I’ve been contemplating is the tagline from Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers—”Why be the sheep when you can be the wolf?”

    • tonya

      I can’t wait to read Ink! Is it December yet?

      I haven’t read the Grave Mercy series, but that’s a fantastic line.

  9. Molli Moran

    Oooh, this is the first place I’ve seen this cover. LOVE it. I still need to read The Reece Malcom List, but now I’m even more psyched to. :)

    • tonya

      You saw it here first, baby! ;) The Reece Malcolm List is a perfect summer afternoon read. Doooo it.

  10. Heather Roddenberry

    I have a tattoo, but it’s not a literary tattoo (it’s an Egyptian hieroglyphic symbol that I LOVE) but I recently read a great quote in a book, a book with awesome music themes:

    Music is Memory

    That’s what I’d get:)

    Can’t wait to read this book. TY for the giveaway opportunity.

    • tonya

      Ooh, your tattoo sounds interesting! And I love that quote. So true, isn’t it? So many songs are the soundtracks to my past.

  11. readingdate

    Ooh nice cover! I’ve been wanting to read this book ever since I finished The Reece Malcolm List. Glad December isn’t too far away.

    I don’t have any tattoos but I guess I’d get something small and meaningful. I’m kind of drawing a blank here though! I’m quite fond of Tris’s tattoos from Divergent, so maybe some birds would be nice :)

    • tonya

      Me too! I can’t wait to read INK.

      I’ve always loved the way Tris’ piece was described too. It would be such a subtle ode to the book. :)


    I have SO MANY bookish tattoo ideas, and I think once my half sleeve is done being colored in I’m going to do either a Harry Potter or A Song of Ice and Fire related piece.
    I looove bookish quote tattoos, and while I definitely don’t believe all tattoos need to be deep and meaningful, I just can’t mess around with words like that. As soon as I picked a quote, I would find another one I like better, I just know it! So for now I’m okay with just admiring the quotes on other people.

    • tonya

      I think I’d be the same way–or just end up with every inch covered in ink. So many to choose from!

      Love the idea of an HP or GoT piece!