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Choosing Between Cover Ideas

Hey there! I decided to design the cover for a steampunk romance novel I'm about to publish under my imprint, PH Press. First, I mocked up several cover ideas and posted them on social media, inviting friends to vote on a favorite. This is the first-place winner:

The favorite is eye-catching and the girl looks mysterious and compelling. But once I reviewed the book description I had written, I realized my friends' second choice was a better fit:

A story of passion and peril in alternative Victorian England.

It's the late 19th century. Bold inventions usher in a new age, while genetic and cosmetic sciences reinforce an age-old class system. For the rich, immunity to disability and disease justifies their hold on power. Born disfigured, Mordecai Michaelson has employed his musical talent to rise above a life of poverty. Philomena Paulson appears no less perfect and no more talented than her upper class world requires. But she has secrets only Mordecai understands. Acceptance, trust, and a passion for music compose bonds of forbidden love between them. When chance discovery of Philomena's darkest secret threatens scandal and revolution, she's determined to save Mordecai from the gallows. But Mordecai is just as determined to keep her from social suicide, even if it costs him his life.

Do agree with my choice? Because the alternative setting is pivotal to the novel's plot, I think picturing the setting on the cover will orient readers to the type of story they'd step into.

Now that I've chosen a design idea, I'll purchase the stock images at the proper size to begin cover design. I will probably post regarding that process, so stay tuned!

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