Yep I like it too. It is eye-catching and a bit out of the ordinary. Do you get a book cover illustrated before you find a publisher? If not, do you find the illustrator, or does the publisher recommend anyone?
I found an old retro postcard which I knew was just perfect for the cover and gave it to the person who did my last few covers. She came up with the design (which suits the story perfectly) inspired by the postcard and after reading the ms. That's part of why she's so good - I doubt whether many designers actually read the story first.
I've only ever worked with small publishers so I've always had a big say in the cover. I understand the author has far less control in the big houses where cover design is a major part of the process. In this case, I'm doing it myself for the first ever time (after having the book accepted and then dropped due to the publisher's financial problems). That means it's even more critical I get the cover right to convince purchasers and bookstores that they're looking at trade level quality.
If I was still working at my much beloved (and dearly missed) indie bookshop from a lifetime ago, this is the exact kind of book (and bookcover) that we would have given the full "must-display" treatment- because it is both a little tongue-in-cheek and very eyecatching. ( Probably would have merited an employee review, too. )
Sorry to hear about issues with your publisher, but glad to hear you are moving forward on your own.
The cover works on so many levels and is deeply indicative of the story within. Mind you, like all my work it's a little confronting so I'm getting a range of reviews. I expected that but anticipated people being upset by the politics. Instead they seem to be more upset with the behaviour of the characters, which surprised me. This is the first of my books to be marketed outside Australia so I suspect people outside Australia judge behaviour very differently.