The headless woman is currently the trend in the covers of "serious" chick lit and historical romance novels. This trend is a paradox if not downright hilarious. If these novels were indeed serious, why cut the anatomical part that houses the brain? Perhaps there's an artistic school of thought regarding the non-use of heads in covers that I know nothing about.
I scoured some of my books for these headless women, and, apart from my precious collection of GG books, I wasn't able to find any. I did notice one amusing thing though. In gay-themed books, the predominant human image is, of course, the male head. Are gay-themed books more unconsciously cerebral? It depends. I noticed that when the covers are showing the man's head without much of the facial details, the more "intelligent" the books are.
Gay erotic books show you everything -- the impossibly handsome face, the ridiculously toned torso, the seemingly pregnant biceps. I believe this also applies to erotic fiction of the straight variety, with a different visual element of course. This is in your
There is one way to counteract HWFS. Get the cover showing the movie poster. A good example is the cover of Philippa Gregory's The Other Boleyn Girl. Revising the cover from the obligatory HW to the indulgent movie poster is a brilliant marketing ploy if you ask me. Women and gay guys buy it because of Eric Bana, straight guys because of Scarlett Johansson, and geeks can get a high seeing Princess Amydala.