Random (but not really)

Saturday, December 21, 2019

The Books of 2019: Fantasy Covers I Adore

I generally try to squee about covers that are relatively new releases–either this year or last (since I don’t always read new releases immediately). I don’t have a lot of fantasy series that I pre-order anymore, and at least one of those I didn’t like the cover (I didn’t HATE it, I just disliked it; there is a difference).



The Phoenix IllusionThe Phoenix Illusion (2018) Lisa Shearin (SPI Files)

Murwood Media, LLC

This cover made it here not because it’s perfect, because it does have flaws.

This cover made it because this is book six in a series, and the author switched from traditional to self-publishing.

So even though the author didn’t have access to the original artist, they did an amazing job of replicating the feel of the earlier covers.

Additionally, it is in no way obvious that the author switched to self-publishing: There is no evidence of terrible Photoshop, and it’s clear someone with artistic skills put this together.

Unfortunately, seeing how good this cover is just makes me madder at the big name publishing houses that give their authors utterly crappy covers: Come on publishers! If an author can do this on her own, you can CERTAINLY stop pushing out the ugly, horrible dreck.

Not that I have strong feelings or anything.


Family MattersFamily Matters (2018) Angel Martinez (Brandywine Investigations)

Mischief Corner Books, LLC

This cover is just fun.

It’s depicting the first story in the collection, which involved the Minotaur (WHO IS WEARING A KILT! HOW PERFECT IS THAT?) and Dionysus (yes, that god) and that’s perfect.

But what’s even better are the details: the books and tomes and scrolls made it clear that this is an impressive library. The small creature staring down from the top of the shelves. The magical cloud hovering over the two of them.

It’s just a really neat cover.

(NOTE: This is a boinking book.)


Circle of the MoonCircle of the Moon (2019) Faith Hunter (Soulwood)


All the covers for this series are gorgeous. I’ve loved every single one of them, but I think this might be the prettiest.

I adore the purple here, but even without the purple this would be a marvelous cover.

With magic users, covers often have difficulty portraying the active use of magic. These covers always show Nell as using magic–and in a gorgeous manner.

Additionally, since Nell is some flavor of what might be considered a druid or dryad, her connection to trees and the land is also clear.

And the moon! And the stars behind the trees!

So lovely!

All the publishers here are winners, with no publisher having more than one book in this category.

The Books of 2019

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