The Cover Wars #4 : Dystopia

These are all dystopia covers! Whoo!Lord-of-the-Flies-Centenary-B-PB

Steph: I kinda like this cover, I like how the conch is swallowing the boy – who I imagine is Ralph. In the story the conch is the symbol of order and it is used to call all the boys to ‘vote’ and meet and make executive decisions as a functioning micro-democracy. So it’s interesting having this symbol devour the democrat leader here. It could also just be any of the boys because, in a way, they are all swallowed by the illusion of order. There is no order. So, like the cover.

Janet: Jonah and the whale – this cover makes me think that a man has been swallowed by a big fish. (And yes, I know that whales are mammals, not fish.) The white-on-black lines, patterning, the way his face is drawn, and his expression remind me of Maori or African art (I’m afraid I don’t know enough about either to be more exact), and the male face appears distinctly non-white, non-schoolboy-aged. Misleading? Probably. But a whole lot more appealing than the bloodied pig head cover on the edition that my high school had.

Yash: I love this cover, but I love more what Janet mentioned about the art style looking somewhat “African”, though we cannot pin-point how. Lord of the Flies (first published in 1954) has had several cover changes and the designer of this particular cover said, “(he) was interested in the way that Lord of the Flies recognizes the primitive lurking not far beneath the surface of modern convention … ” Is race an interesting connection? Maybe. The only connection?No, not at all. Lord of the Flies is too complex for that, I think- and so is this fabulous new cover.

Nafiza: Janet sees a man swallowed by a big fish and I see a man peering out a crack in the bushes. Well, if bushes had cracks in them, he’d be peering out of one. I like how quirky it is. I am not familiar with Lord of the Flies at all but I like how the cover promises some darkness. And it does look like Maori art. Hm.


Steph: Ok, the story behind this one is that I was in the book store and I walked up to a shelf and there were a bunch of dystopia on display: ProdigyThe Hunger Games, Divergent and this one. This one, the newest of the bunch, isn’t even hiding the fact that cover is the exact same as these others. And the title tells me the whole premise of the book is something that has been passed on from children’s dystopia since The Giver – the testing *sighs* *rolls eyes* it’s been done, I’m curious to see if this person does anything different, but by the look of the cover, I have my doubts.

Janet: Ooh, yes. The colour scheme, the maze pattern, and the mysterious silver object (a medallion?) engraved with what appears to be the sun (or a star) and lightning – I’m curious.

Yash: Oh, a metallic object? And a maze? Over dark, boring colours to depict a dystopian world? How original. (Of course, I do not mean the book. The book itself may be quite good. I just wish the cover design looked like someone actually gave a damn.)

Nafiza: *Yawn.* This does nothing for me except make me take a step or two back. I probably wouldn’t give it another look.


Steph: Apocalypse! Adam and Eve story! This story will probably only have the dystopia as a setting, and by the looks of it these two characters might be the last teens in new york or something, what will follow is adventure, romance – where’s the dystopia there? I don’t think that having an exciting adventure with a cute boy is the definition of a place I wouldn’t want to live in. ^_^; So I don’t know about this. Bleak is good though, so I’d have to look into it, it’s a maybe… but probably a no.

Janet: Not my cup of tea. Why is the title repeated, unless in reference to “Ring around the rosy”? Looks bleak and dystopian, and I’ll leave it to Steph (haha). Slightly reminiscent of the cover of Armageddon Summer by Jane Yolen and Bruce Coville.

Yash: The title is interesting, and so is the font. I am not a fan of the colours, and the two young people. And, of course, it’s a guy and a girl who are both (from what I can see) white, because never under any circumstance can the challenger within a dystopian system be an actual Other. Again, unless the book boasts of something completely different, I think I can live without this on my shelf.

Nafiza: This looks extra bleak which somehow ensures that I will never ever pick it up. It’s not very original and says nothing about the content of the novel.


Steph: Yep, I’d read this one. It’s dramatic and it will clearly focus on one thing and follow characters as they try to figure out how to survive or deal with the issue at hand and then things will get interesting. Maslow’s bottom line is food, so it could be very dark and very fun!

Janet: Dramatic! Still looks gloom-and-doom, but intriguingly so. Photographs on covers are hard to pull off and easily dated, but this one has potential. I’d pick it up and read the back for sure.

Yash: This is much better. Photography and photoshopping skills put to good use. (Finally.) I don’t like the font, but the title and the rotting apple definitely draw me in. I am very curious to see what this one is about.

Nafiza: I appreciate this cover. I like how the title reflects the main image. A rotting apple. Of course they are famished. Plus, the cracked earth and severe storms and oh is that a fire. Plus, there are no people. Ominous. I’d read the back.

restoring harmony

Steph: I think I’d give this a try because it hints at the utopian idea with the cover, sort of coming out of a place with no harmony. She has a musical instrument which is intriguing and I like that the path goes on and on and on because it’s a long road to resolution. I think I’d give it a go.

Janet: Ominous. The play with light is interesting, and I like the seagulls, clouds, water, and the eerie boxes of light. Is that a ukulele case in her hand? I want to know more – flip to the back cover, please.

Yash: Like Steph and Janet have observed, I like the thought behind this cover. Her musical instrument. The endless road. The dark clouds that part in the distance, hinting at some hope. I would probably read the book. Okay, I would at least read the summary in the back. But that doesn’t really mean I like the cover. Too much going on. Plus, well, I’ve already made my feelings on photography and photo editing clear, I think.

Nafiza: I don’t like this. At all. The name would have been cool had it been aligned with the path the girl is walking on. Right now it feels lopsided and is driving my OCD persona completely crazy. Also, if you want to see someone’s back as they walk down the road away from you, go look at the Partial covers. Still tired but at least their covers are well done.