We've all walked through the bookstore and seen unfortunate cover art. Maybe it was a poorly drawn cartoon couple that got your attention, or perhaps there was a sneaky male appendage making an appearance. I would just like to begin this post by saying no matter what you see on an book's cover, chances are, the author had no part in creating the artwork. Zero. If the author is lucky, they might be asked to consult in the process (generally by filling out a form about the characters and story) and that form might be looked at by the artist who might decide to include something on that form in the cover art. So if they get their book back with an awful cover, it's just a grin-and-bear-it situation.
However, there are some authors who do discuss their terrible covers like bestselling author Suzanne Brockmann. When 2000's Get Lucky, the eighth in her Tall, Dark & Dangerous series, came out, the author was horrified. She said in an interview that, "the cover artist put the Pillsbury Doughboy on the cover. Seriously, [Lucky] was popping out of his dress whites. And he was disproportionate. He had stubby little legs and hot dog fingers. Not exactly dreamboat material."