If you have never surfed on over to Smart Bitches for their smart romance novel reviews, analysis of trends in women’s reading or just general blog snarkery, then that’s a crying shame.

One of the most hilarious reasons to check them out is their cover snarkery where they take published romance novel covers and rename them in various snarky ways.

Not only does snarking covers make one smile, but it kind of brings to the fore uncomfortable truths about what looks “normal” to us on covers, but in reality would be very uncomfortable and weird- and what does that say about us?

Author Jim Hines also has an interesting take on the problem. He posed himself like various Urban Fantasy covers featuring women and found out spine-twisting poses HURT. (and also look weird when done by middle-aged, white men)

Now he’s done it again, this time with men posed on covers for Romance/Fantasy covers. Apparently that took less contortionist posing, but very rarely involved shirts.

So we like twisted women in shirts and headless men without shirts, apparently. Or at least, that’s what catches our eyes these days.