This meme was started by Books by Proxy, whose fabulous idea was to compare UK and US book covers and decide which is we prefer. This week’s topic is comparing covers featuring birds. It took me a while to track this one down – I recalled the cover, but had forgotten the book, so was delighted when I realised it was by one of my all-time favourite authors – Fool’s Quest – Book 2 of Fitz and Fool series by Robin Hobb.
This first cover is for the 2015 edition released by Del Rey. While I love a lot of their covers, I’m not sure this one really does justice to the book. The man dominating the cover is presumably Fitz, but I have such a clear idea of how he looks that I find it jarring.
For me there simply is no contest this week. This cover, produced by Harper Voyager, was the one I’d envisaged as soon as I saw this week’s Friday Face-off. I love its simplicity and the sense of movement with the wings half on and half off the page. I also think the title font works well. As evidenced by my trawling back to find it – this is also a memorable cover. What do you think? Do you agree?
I’m with you — I much prefer the UK cover. But the other cover, which is nicely done in its own terms, may be more appealing to US readers of epic fantasy.
You’re probably right! I’m looking forward to seeing how other folks react to the very different covers.
Is the Voyager cover by Jackie Morris?
Yes – it’s the first cover Morris has produced for Robin Hobb. I think it is exceptional.
She’s super-talented. I had her “Unquiet Dreams of Long Dogs” as my desktop background for ages 🙂
Long live the internet:)). How lucky are we to be able to surround ourselves with our favourite art and music?
Oh my, Sorry! I’ve just posted the exact same book for my Friday Face-Off with the UK cover winning to! 🙂 I feel bad now! 😦
There’s absolutely no need to! It just shows that BOTH of us have stunning good taste:)))
True and it shows that no matter the gender or age as we both picked the same that Robin Hobb books are for everyone so everyone needs to read them!!! 🙂
You’re right – that hadn’t occurred to me – but it is true:))
Oh my, I’m right about something, erm….world ending in 3……2……….1…….! 🙂
Hmmmm… this is a tough one. I’m tempted to go with the US cover, but I like both. The bird on the UK cover is beautifully drawn.
I don’t find the US cover particularly appealing, but the artwork and design is very well done. The UK version, however, just jumps out at me.
Just looked at this one on TattooedBookGeek XD Fitz look very generic, and the font of the UK is a great choice; has a nice flow to it – like a bird in the wind 🙂
It does, doesn’t it? And the bird has special significance once you read the book…:)
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Great – and I agree with your choice definitely. Our books are so different and yet the covers we’ve chosen have uncanny similarities.
Clearly you, me and Drew (TattooedBookGeek) have superior tastes:).
I definitely agree! I absolutely love all the UK covers for Hobb’s books. From the John Howe artwork to the new covers which are currently doing the rounds, they’re all different but have a certain elegance about them! Great choice!
I love the second one too, and as far as I recall the same cover was used in one of the Polish editions too.
I think that operates under the tried and tested rule ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…’ I certainly notice a strong difference between UK and US covers – the US versions nearly always feature a person, and the artwork is often vivid and very punchy, whereas the UK covers often are more abstract or focus on objects, with some more detailed background, often in more muted colours – is there is a recognisable cultural difference with Polish covers in the same way?
It’s hard to say. Translated books often get the original (or slightly altered covers), but there are few publishers with very distincive cover designs.
I’ve already mentioned “Uczta Wyobraźni” series, most of their covers are stunning:
Another publisher has hard cover books all in black with just a small graphic in front.
We also have a verz talented cover designer going by Dark Crayon, he designs several series for several sci-fi/fantasy publishers and if you’re curious, you can have a peek on his Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/DarkCrayonDesign/photos
Other than that (and outside of sci-fi and fantasy genres) it’s quite a mix of good and bad, some copied from US, some from UK, some beautiful and original.
Thank you for taking the time to answer my query so thoroughly. I’ve gone onto the Dark Crayon fb page – you’re right… The original designs are beautiful, with a distinctly fey, otherworldly feel about them.
You’re welcome. My secret dream is for DC to make my covers… but I don’t think it’ll happen. 😉
Hang onto that dream:). No point in dreaming small…
Definitely the second cover gets my vote, but I do like a bit of Ye Olde English style 😀
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