I need a gripping cover for the e-book. The Czech print version/e-book sold very well (find the cover attached in the images), but we still want to change the cover for the English speaking market. What I want: a cover that will be slightly shocking and humorous at the same time, that it captures the ironical tone of the narration (think Bridget Jones combined with M.A.S.H.), the visual absurdity of the Balkans (think the most illogical things imaginable, like a staircase that leads nowhere, a basketball pitch in the middle of a busy crossing with baskets attached to the walls of opposite buildings). Some inspirational motives from the book: 1) there is a lot of criticism of international organizations, i.e. FLAGS, FLAGPOLES, badges, 2) the logline of the story is "Can billions be embezzled hundred by hundred?", i.e. BANKNOTES, COINS, STEALING 3) post-war images, i.e. broken houses, peacekeepers' jeeps, mined areas, 4) a location where many scenes take place is a pub called By the Chicken That Got Ran over by a Truck - it is a pub for the locals, where they chat, watch soccer, smuggle and trade things, and eat local specialty - a flat chunk of chicken (see the cover of the original version), 5) contrasts, i.e. heaping piles of paper (preambles, treaties, project documentation, peace agreements, etc.) vs miserable reality (no electricity, no water, no asphalted roads), 6) ants and ticks: characters in the book are either one or the other, ie. ants who mean well, work hard,but get frustrated,and ticks who just wait and then, at the right historic moment, suck a bit of blood (read the attached excerpt on this if you like), 7) barbed wire as a symbol of post-war zones, peacekeeping, but also restrictions, limits, etc. We used a barbed wire font on the original cover and in chapter headings (see link), 8) Puzzle imagery - the meaning of the title "Total Balkans" remains a mystery throughout the whole book, it only gets resolved at the final page.
Color combinations to preferably avoid: the story is on neither side of the Kosovo conflict, so I would like to avoid the color combinations of the flags of the included parties - Serbia (white/red/blue), Albania (black/red), independent Kosovo (blue/yellow). Also, I don't want weapons/uniforms/military imagery to be the main image on the cover. It can be there if it is subtle and humorous, as a supporting element.