The Mysterious Miss X
I couldn't resist discussing the similarity of these book covers to my own. This is typically what could happen (fellow authors have reported their variations) when you rely on purchasing a cover for your precious writing. It is not always what it seems.
When I purchased my cover from SelfPubBookCovers, I expected that my professionally designed cover would be one-of-a-kind. Technically, of course, they ARE different, but it is not what an author wants to see. Bad enough that our work can easily be pirated these days with little recourse to small-time writers who cannot afford to pursue copyright infringement.
Here is part of a comment made by Melisanda on a February 17, 2011 Writer's Digest article - Ten Tips for Effective Book Covers.
"A professional designer would be able to break a number of those 'rules' and still produce an excellent cover. An amateur could follow them all and still produce a dreadful cover, e.g. there are thousands of terrible fonts out there other than comic sans and papyrus (which isn't all that bad anyway, just a bit hackneyed).
In the end, though, a book cover does no more than attract prospective readers to pick up the book and look at the marketing blurb, which in turn encourages them to look inside. I think it highly unlikely that a person has ever bought a book because they liked the cover. On the other hand, I've known quite a number of books with rather poor covers which have sold very well. Alas, the buying public don't know the rules."
I hope she's right and, for at least these three books, the stories within are entirely different. I'm sure had the author's known of the others, we would have made different selections. But now I am wondering how many more of Miss X are out there. So, if you find one, let me know and I'll add it to my collection.