Watch, then read: The best book trailers out there

Feb 28, 2014 at 5:50 p.m. ET

Book trailers began as half-hearted advertising experiments in the early 2000s, but they are now a book's best friend.

Book trailers: your new shopping aid.

Photo credit: CZQS2000 / STS/ Photodisc

This week, the popular book and TV series Game of Thrones released pictures and teasers for the upcoming season. As viewers, we like to be teased, which is probably where the whole book trailer thing came from. Crowds love a movie trailer; why not apply the same method to books?

Publishers are only too happy with boosts in pre-sales, all thanks to book trailers. I admit I've been sucked in. I've bought a book based on the trailer alone. To make you share my enthusiasm, I've trolled the internet for some of the best book trailers that'll make you want to spend your money.


Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children
by Ransom Riggs

This is the one that did it — made me buy a book without knowing a thing about it. Riggs went to film school, so I'm sure he put his all into perfecting the trailer. What starts all nice and pleasant soon turns ominous and super-creepy. Sort of like the book.



Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig

Blackbirds is the first of Wendig's two-part series, and talk about a tease! This trailer has no pictures. It's just words scrolling and an aged man's voice. Still, you get the tone of the book, and you know something bad is going to happen. A good trailer should make you ask questions, and this one does. For instance: Who is Miriam Black?



The Women by T.C. Boyle

Created by up-and-coming book trailer god Jamieson Fry, this trailer tells you everything — and nothing. The Women is about Frank Lloyd Wright and his many romantic relationships. In the dreamy, violent trailer, you meet his ladies. You're left wondering what happened to these beautiful women, and what did Frank have to do with it?


Hot YA reads >>


The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

Another book I bought based on the trailer. You're sucked in immediately. There's a Ouija board, a sexy, shirtless guy, murder, mayhem and questions... so many questions. The trailer has great atmosphere, just like the book, and you can feel the creepiness here. You almost wonder if you're watching a trailer for a book or a movie.



How Did You Get This Number by Sloane Crosley

I have absolutely no clue what this book is about … and I don't care. This is like a paper doll acid trip. Weird paper dolls travel the world in search of a missing bear? Hmm. Well, I did finally look up what this book is about: it's a collection of essays. I'll probably buy it. The trailer is so wacked out and clever, I have to.



Forecast by Shya Scanlon

A wife watches her husband on TV. He's a weatherman in Seattle, and according to his forecast, there's nothing but warm weather and sunshine! More surprising than nice weather in Washington: the wife thinks her husband is cheating on her. This is a highly uncomfortable trailer that leaves you with brow furrowed and finger on the "buy" button.


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Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls by David Sedaris

This trailer is an odd little cartoon with a Sedaris voice-over. There's not much to it, but in his classic, comic style, he delivers a vocal performance worth a thousand laughs. He pokes fun at himself, which is endearing, and the trailer is brilliant in its effortless simplicity. Gave me a good chuckle, just like the book.


Nochita by Dia Felix

This debut novel is about a rebel runaway. She runs away from irresponsible adults and into even more irresponsible behavior. The book trailer feels like a mix between a drug flashback and an Amanda Palmer video. I get all tingly watching it, like I want to be at that party, waking up on the floor, wondering, "What the hell happened?"

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