The Cover and The Cover


(The first person who gets the inside joke I’m making in the blog post title and posts the answer in the com­ments sec­tion, gets their choice of any book I’ve done signed and mailed to them).

Fan­tasy Fac­tion did an exclu­sive reveal of the cover of the British edi­tion of CONTROL POINT the other day. It’s by the dig­ital pho­tog­raphy artist Larry Ros­tant, who also did the amazing cover of Peter V. Brett’s The Desert Spear, which is one of my favorite covers in fan­tasy. I’m also super for­tu­nate to have Pete’s *awe­some* jacket quote on both covers.

It has a totally dif­ferent feel from the US edi­tion of the book, done by another artist I greatly admire, Michael Komarck. Komarck has been illus­trating book covers for many novels and also did a lot of the inte­rior art in my favorite role-playing games (including Shadow Run and D&D).

Here are the two covers, side by side:


US Cover
UK Cover

I have to admit, I feel like I won the lot­tery with both of these covers. The Komarck image is action packed and exciting. The Ros­tant image is moody, evoca­tive and iconic.

In both cases, the gear is right, with both artists willing to accept a *lot* of tech­nical detailed guid­ance from me and able to repro­duce it on the cover. I love that Oscar Britton is front and center for both. It’s so amazing to see a person I’ve known for so long on my imag­i­na­tion become flesh and blood through someone else’s art.

What’s really fas­ci­nating for me is the notion that dif­ferent national audi­ences have dif­ferent expec­ta­tions for covers. British audi­ences may find the US cover too … comic-booky. US audi­ences may find the British cover too … staid. Or maybe I’m totally off base. The exciting part is this: the dif­ferent covers remind me that my work is stretching across dif­ferent cul­tures, reaching dif­ferent sets of people with dif­ferent sets of expe­ri­ences and expec­ta­tions, miles apart.

Here’s hoping they love the story as much as I love the artwork.

  • http://twitter.com/FredKiesche Fred Kiesche

    Nice (book) covers, but where are the covers for the main char­ac­ters. They appear to be out­doors, so they should be under cover. No?

    • MykeCole

      Cor­rect, but the Shadow Coven cover is a ball cap, which tends to blow off in combat.

  • Dan

    Your ref­er­encing China Mieville’s book The City & The City. Being Amer­ican I find it odd that I always like the British covers better.

    • MykeCole

      Dan, you win. Con­grats. Shoot me an email at myke (at) mykecole (dot) com and I’ll get you your prize.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=778500532 Matt Jebus Jones

    I kept thinking of The Will & The Word from the Bel­gariad and also some album name, I can’t recall at the moment. EDIT: The Colour and the Shape by Foo Fighters!

    But I think Dan is right, City & the City makes more sense.

  • http://twitter.com/SheckyX Shecky X

    FWIW, either cover would have caught my eye big-time.

  • http://twitter.com/PaperlessRead Ken

    Both are great but I are still prefer the US ver­sion because it has all the little details that per­tain to the story.

  • Ken Neth

    Is it the body armor worn by Oscar in each cover. Or per­haps the backup cover in the US vs. solo in the UK.

    The City & The City was what came to mind first though.

  • Shack

    I like the US cover but I much prefer the UK ver­sion both for the image and the typog­raphy. But you are a lucky man — both work so well. Have you got poster sized ones framed at home?

  • Kendall

    Both covers are great.  Congrats!

  • http://www.theageofwill.com bestep

    Book cover, uni­form cover…everything needs a hat :-) Although I admit I first through of China’s book, ‘The City and the City.’ I like the mood of the UK cover. It’s a book I’m more likely to pick up at random at the book store.  Both covers are terrific.

  • Drew

    Speaking of covers, the cover of SO:CP caught my eye at the PX today!  Glad to see it there!

  • Drew

    Speaking of covers, the cover of SO:CP caught my eye at the PX today!  Glad to see it there!

  • KP

    Both great covers that make for an appealing wanna grab it and take a look at it book.