Someone once said: never judge a book by its cover. Well, we’re throwing that way out the window because wow, these books are… something.
Sure, nothing beats curling up in bed with a good one after a long day. But when your favourite Maltese book has an It-esque nun or a bunch of sperm with googly-eyes, we need to talk.
1. Il-Baruni tad-Droga
For starters: Portomaso tower, great stylistic choice. Secondly, we haven’t seen a cliché as blaring as a drug lord smoking a cigar since the last Eurovision host’s choice to tell a bad joke.
Also, nothing screams ‘intimidating’ more than a giant puff of white smoke obstructing a bald guy’s vision.
2. Il-Kommendatur Filomeni Għab
Spoiler alert: we have absolutely no clue what this book is about. Judging by Filomeni’s vacant expression, we’re betting he was off on a week-long heroin/Monster energy drink/cocaine bender. That, and a seven-day nap in a random alley behind his own home.
3. Bormla Babes Behind-The-Scenes
Much as we’d love to think otherwise, Bormla Babes will probably be fated to join the ranks of Qawsalla and Trevor Zahra in the annals of secondary school curricula.
How’s that for Maltese litera- no, can’t type that.
4. Il-Banka tal-Isperma
Ah yes. Nothing screams I’m-a-great-book-I-promise more than a googly-eyed dribble of sperm adorning empty oil bottles, presumable for storage of said google-eyed splooge.
5. Fid-Dell tal-Mantell Iswed
Wow. Voldemort sure got himself a fancier cloak.
6. Fid-Dell tat-Terremot
What is it with books and dellijiet?
Furthermore: is that a surgical theatre? Wasn’t this about earthquake? Why are the surgeons staring at their hands like it’s the first time they’re seeing them?
7. It-Tfajla tal-Bikini Vjola
Erm. OK. So. Great job at discovering Microsoft Paint. You’re exactly two decades late to the party.
P.S.: not sure if it’s Gozo based, but we’re loving the fact that the church is totally unaffected by the sandstorm. Up yours Darude.
We’re calling it: this was the OG Fifty Shade of Grey. But also, feel free to join It-Tfajla tal-Bikini Vjola in your discovery of Clipart.
9. Il-Ħajja Mqallba taz-Zija Rhoda
Our bet’s that Zija Rhoda is leading a double life, using her love of travel as a mask for her secret spy life.
She’s probably trailing one of the many silhouettes sporting luggage along the bottom of the book cover. Maybe they’re carrying contraband. Maybe they’re nuclear weapons. What if they’re the good guys? Is Rhoda the villain?! Daqshekk, Rhoda is a terrorist.
10. Sliema Wives
Before Bormla Babes, there was Sliema Wives.
And, like all good page turners, the author has to be front and centre in the middle of his book’s cover spread in the midst of all his characters.
Was that shade?
11. Bejn Demgħa u Tbissima
Bejn Demgħa u Tbissima: your artwork is straight to the point. Props to you.
12. Weraq tal-Ħarifa
We’re going out on an autumn-themed limb here and assuming that the publishers took a screen grab of a 90s music video and threw in a Karl Marx impersonator over it all.
13. Raħal Maqbud f’Tempesta
14. Madliena Married Men
If there’s one thing Gerard James Borg really knows, it’s what his audience wants: to learn how to have sex without taking your tights off.
Judging by the screaming face on the cover of this Anton Grasso classic, we’re going to assume this book is about the struggles of dealing the tax deductions from your monthly paycheque.
16. Il-Bambini tal-Milied
This baby Jesus is here to lead the way to salvation.
He knows it, we know it, and Joseph Muscat knows it.
No not the prim, the author. Who might as well be the PM. Who knows?
17. Il-Valz ta’ Mefistofle
So, Anton Grasso is apparently the go-to guy when in need a good Maltese literary scare. There’s a lot going on here, but we’ll go ahead and take a wild guess: this book is about Satan and horny women who can’t afford nightwear?
18. Dawra ma’ Malta
Move over Beatrix Potter, this educational book about our islands featuring the Balluta church is what tasteful children’s literature should look like.
19. Bla Ħtija
Now don’t lie, Gino Lombardi – you had an Evanescence phase? Right? Why else would you choose that font…
20. Iċ-Ċurkett tat-Tieġ
This mixture between Lord of the Rings and Love in the Time of Cholera is one of those romantic novels your mum most probably owns. We’re happy that this is the first book cover that knows how capitalisation in book titles works on this list though.
21. Is-Soru l-Bajda
Oh, so this is where James Wan got his inspiration for The Nun…
In summary, the ghost of some pissed nun haunts a Russian soldier and honestly, we’re digging it.
22. Imħabba Mċaħħda
The smouldering look, the frizzy hair, the tight photoshopped skin and the groomed beard say it all – you wrote an Outlander fanfiction and managed to get it published, so kudos to you.
So. Many. Questions.
Is this book about passionate love making or a happy childhood? Why is there the Titanic in the upper-right corner? Is that the Titanic? Why is there a splotch of… whatever that is on the left?
And more importantly:
Why is this random child here? Are you OK? Do you need us to call your parents?
Someone please help.