The Cover Wars: Fantasy Edition

The Cover Wars!

Wherein your Book Wars Bloggers (Janet, Yash, Nafiza and Steph) judge books by their covers. It’s great fun 🙂

Today’s choice are covers of fantasy novels that I (Nafiza) have read and enjoyed. I want to point out that though we do seem to judge books by the cover in this feature, we don’t usually do so in real life. Unless the covers are horrendous, in which case, I cover them up with brown paper and then read the book.



Steph: Oh fantasy. I honestly scrolled down and started laughing because really… they all look pretty darn similar. They are always pretty and hint at magic. This one is pretty, but it’s so pink! And another girl with a bow? Another sexy heroine wielding a bow and saving her kingdom – rah rah rah.

Nafiza: This one actually should not be judged by the cover. The protagonist is not the sexy/strong protag as the image suggests but not gonna lie, had I not read Cashore’s first novel, I would not have been as keen to read this one. I do like the details on the bow though.

Janet: I don’t mind the pink (it’s a nice colour!) but I dislike the fading-into-the-background lips. Disappearing faces just do not appeal. I don’t see the point.

Yash: Not my favourite art, though I do like the colours and font. I would probably read the back. I might read more simply because I’ve had my eye on Graceling for a while.


Steph: The Neverending Story did the necklace with Orin on it first! Also misty hills and swirly celtic thingys – I’m thinking loads of hot red-heads and magic. Meh. (and because I’m editing afterwards – guys can have red hair too Nafiza!).

Nafiza: Actually, the protagonist in this one is male. 😛 And no, not a redhead either. One of the best YA fantasy novels I’ve read to date, to be honest. I don’t know what to say about this. The cover is not very outstanding but it is representative of the novel so…

Janet: I think the medallion would work better if it was in a drawn/painted style. Or it if was real. As it is, it looks too polished and too fake – like a lot of YA covers – so I just don’t care enough to read the back.

Yash:  I like things. Things are pretty useful on a magical quest type … thing. And if it’s a medallion, we already know it will be important.But I agree with Janet, I think the medallion would look a lot more appealing if it was a different style.


Steph: I really like this cover because I’ve read the book and it matches the book nicely. However! A silhouette, a cat, rooftops… it is pretty cliché ^_^;

Nafiza: I love Mr. Taggles. I’m glad he got cover space. I also like the blue scarf matching the title but I could do without the curly bits at the bottom. The Australian cover is atrocious.

Janet: I like the cityscape, which surprises me, but then again I like the novel. I agree with Nafiza about the curly bits at the bottom but I’m not so sure about the scarf. Also, perhaps I remember the setting incorrectly, but I suspect that going about in clothes such as she is wearing would land Plain Kate in a lot of trouble very quickly. But I do like the rooftops, the cat, and the story quite a bit.

Yash: I’ve heard a lot of good things about the book but, like Steph, I’m getting tired of the girl/cat companionship thing. For once, can’t we have a girl on a polar bear dog or something?! What I do love is the colour scheme and the cityscape. It’s gorgeous. It looks pretty non-fantasy i.e. apart from the girl on the rooftop … and that’s what draws me in. Just alluring enough. All I wish is that they had chosen a different font and removed the pattern on the bottom.


Steph: >.>; Alison Goodman writing a very asian book called ‘eon’ with a dragon in the sunrise and a katana wielding silhouette? I really feel like this is over doing it a little. This one is overkill.

Nafiza: I’m going to have disagree with Steph. Eon/Eona are (is?) my favourite duology and the cover is so fitting of the content inside. Especially the dragon because the dragons in the book are also ethereal creatures that do not fully manifest in the “real” world. What I’m saying is, this works for me.

Janet: I can’t say why the katana-wielding silhouette is just odd without going into spoilers, but I think a more accurate representation of the protagonist would have drawn me in more. Especially since – agh, I run the risk of spoilers again. I’ll stop.

Yash: I had the same reaction as Steph. Alison Goodman writing a book with a dragon, a katana-wielding girl, and some kanji in the title … probably does not bode well. Once more, I would like to know why the publishers chose the cover that they did. I wonder why they decided to focus on dragons, katanas, and kanji, while leaving the girl in the shadows? Is it because they know I dislike “real” girls on covers. Is it because they know that these symbols of a foreign culture appeal to Western audiences? Is it because the girl is a POC? Or is it because she is not a POC and they knew that would annoy me? I don’t know. I might read the back. “Might” being the operative word.


Steph: I really like the artstyle on this one – the pencil or ink – it’s so nice. I also know that this cover matches the actual story so it’s a go! ^_^ So pretty!

Nafiza: Anything is better than this.

Janet: I agree with Steph. The cover is lovely, as is the story. The blue version of the cover is more appealing than the rust red of the above.

Yash: More like it. I love the art. It is just beautiful and old-timey. I mean old-timey, not just because of the setting, but because the art style itself transports us to another time. I can’t believe I still haven’t bought this book …


Steph: What the Sinbad? This really looks like Sinbad. Is it a Sinbad story?

Nafiza: There are pirates involved. The synopsis in my own words is about an assassin (not a very good one apparently) who is sent to assassinate (because that’s what assassins do) a girl but instead, ends ups getting his life saved by the girl he was supposed to assassinate. Thus, he is placed under a curse because you know, shame on assassin! I like the cover over all, I like the Arabesque style and yes, it is representative of the novel.

Janet: I would look at the back cover for sure. My only hesitation would be that the setting is obviously middle eastern, and the author’s name isn’t, and I can’t tell by the cover whether this is a good story, or a trashy, un-nuanced rip-off that plunders thoughtlessly from the Thousand and One Nights tradition. But the back cover and the first page of writing inside would clear that up neatly.

Yash: Nafiza’ synopsis makes it sound cute and goofy. Personally, I wish they hadn’t used three different fonts on the cover. All three are quite different. I feel like the publishers logo did not even have to be on the front cover. And honestly, I could use some more silhouettes of bigger buildings and stuff. Just feels like too much empty space that isn’t really saying anything. I also feel like they were trying to go for this style and came up a bit short. Overall, I do like the cover, but I have my reservations about how this “magical” “Arabian” land is portrayed. I guess the only way to find out would be to read it. So, yeah, I might give this one a go.