Friday Faceoff – A wolf doesn’t concern himself with the opinions of sheep… #Brainfluffbookblog



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 meme is currently being nurtured by Lynn’s Book Blog and the subject this week featuring on any of our covers is a WOLF. I’ve selected Wolf Brother – Book 1 of the Chronicles of Ancient Darkness series by Michelle Paver.


This edition was produced by HarperTrophy in February 2006. The font and pawprint for the O is eye-catching and attractive, but my big problem with this cover is that it simply hasn’t been designed for the digital era and is far too dark. The figures don’t stand out sufficiently and in thumbnail, they simply disappear. Given it is for young readers, I’m not sure why this is such a gloomy offering.


Published in May 2005 by Orion Children’s Books, this cover is far more effective in thumbnail. The line drawing of the boy and the wolf glows out of the terracotta cover and once again, I love the uneven font. Personally, I would have appreciated just a bit more going on – it’s very stark for children, who are generally used to covers with far more detail.


This edition, published by Orion in 2011 is beautiful. I love the colour of the cover and the way the light has been handled. The howling wolf is fabulous, while the figure of Torak, backlit by the rising sun gives a sense of his vulnerability. Once again, the font is effective and quirky. This is my favourite cover.


This German edition, produced by cbj in January 2014 is another strong contender. I love the depiction of the ferocious bear demon in the sky, while Torak and the wolf are running together in the foreground. If I have a niggle, it’s that the figure of the boy is just a bit wooden and doesn’t have the emotion of the previous image. I also think the title font should have been edged or embossed to make it stand out more from the detailing.


This French edition, published in April 2005 by Hachette has plenty going on. It is also beautifully drawn. I love the face of this wolf and the hunched figure of Torak on the rock ledge. The title font has also been produced with care and skill – it looks really effective, even against all the artwork. But… I think there is a tad too much going on. What do you think? Do you agree with me?

26 responses »

  1. My favorite is actually the one published in May of 2005. Stark, perhaps, but I love it for that. I agree it probably wouldn’t grab the eye of a child though.

  2. I may have squealed very loudly when I saw your choice. 😀 This series was one of my absolute faves as a young teen! I have the 2005 Orion editions on my shelves and I love the old cave drawing style of art that it has, but the revamped 2011 edition looks so lovely as well!

    • Yes – I loved this book when I read it… the scene where the father dies is very emotional. Though I didn’t get around to reading the rest of the series – and I should. Glad you liked my choice this week, Kathy:)

  3. As an adult, I prefer the May 2005 cover. The line drawing seems more Ancient, native drawing. However, knowing this book is geared at young readers, I agree with your choice, It is eyecatching and would appeal to young readers.

  4. Hmmm. I agree that last cover looks way too busy. That German cover with the bear-sun over the boy and wolf is my fav, I think. It’s got a lovely color balance that draws my eye time and again. 🙂

  5. I love the first two covers – both have eye-catching design and feel. I like the color palette of the the third cover, but the “floating wolf head” beside the boy on the cliff makes it feel like someone threw random images onto it, not bothered by composition.
    I agree that the last one is waaay too busy – or just the font placement and embellishment could have been better.

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