For a romance novel to be successful, it has to be steamy from the moment readers lay their eyes on it. The covers that end up on these titillating texts, however, are often just as over-the-top as the stories they adorn, and usually feature airbrushed models in dramatically sensual poses. When you put simple, everyday people in the same setting, it's even harder to take it all seriously.
According to writer Lorraine Heath, who was interviewed by Cosmopolitan back in February, romance novel covers are almost the lifeblood of the genre. "Romance readers do base a lot on the covers. That’s the first thing that they look for... I’ve seen readers post that they’ve picked up books simply because they wanted the cover that was on the book," she shared. "It needs to be a little provocative. It’s also helpful if it tries to capture the mood of the story."
Photographer and photo editor Kathleen Kamphausen decided to tone it down, though, and in the most hilarious way possible. She recreated some of the most passionate front covers on shelves using Average Joes instead of Fabios, and they pretty much look like most of us trying to be seductive on any given day. Have a scroll through the salacious series below, and vote the ones that you'd buy over the bestsellers in a heartbeat. Keep it simple, folks!