Cover Art at Sea
I haven’t blogged about cover art in a while, so I figure it’s time for another post. This installment covers a few newer and upcoming releases of cover art with scenes from the high seas – mostly sailing. Why? Well – why not I say.
First up is Red Seas Under Red Skies (author Scott Lynch) – the UK version (top) and the US version (bottom).
First, notice that this violates a very fundamental rule of cover art – that UK versions are better than their US counterparts. This is clearly not the case this time. The UK cover art with it red, white, and black isn’t really bad, but when put next to the US cover art (which is simply spectacular) it doesn’t compare. I like both – but the US version is some of the best cover art I’ve seen in a long time. I couldn’t find out who the artists for these are, so please comment if you know who the credit goes to – I’ll happily edit them in (edit - it appears the US version is by Steve Stone).
This is the cover for Set the Seas on Fire by Chris Roberson (again, I couldn’t track down the artist). This is also quite good, if a bit….old-fashioned looking. But, this is entirely appropriate for the book – it really is more a historical fiction/alternative history book than standard SFF, which makes this historical image very apt. Yet again, I applaud the cover art used here.
Here is the cover art for forthcoming Pirate Freedom by Gene Wolfe – the cover artist is David Grove. I haven’t yet gotten my hands on the book, but the focus on a single character at the helm of a (presumably) pirate vessel seems appropriate with Wolfe being known for strong characterization. I’m really looking forward to this book, and the cover art underscores this anticipation.
I included the covert below to put add some perspective to where SFF cover art related to the high seas has been in the past. These covers by Steven Youll of Robin Hobb’s Liveship Traders Trilogy definitely fall into a more traditional fantasy cover form. As I’ve said previously, this style doesn’t do much for me, but these covers really aren't too bad (they are certainly drawn very well). some are better than others, but overall I'll give thme a pass. Another plus is that they are rather true to the books.
Mad Ship cover
Ship of Destiny cover.
Ship of Magic cover