via Tor Blog

If I'm honest, I have no idea exactly how 'new' these two covers are, but having stumbled across both in the space of 24 hours, I felt they would be worthy of a post.

The first of the covers is for the upcoming eighth Shadows of the Apt volume, The Air War, by Adrian Tchaikovsky. This is a series which Tor UK has recently been revising the look of, having already re-issued the first three novels with brand-new cover art and with the others to follow. It's given them a chance to unify the look of the series, which had already gone throne a number of artistic directions before. I was, however, under the impression that the final three books in the series would be initially released with covers from long-time series artist, Jon Stewart. This doesn't seem to be the case, as The Air War is all decked-out with Alan Brooks' rather eye-catching art.

I can't say I'm a huge fan of what I would consider to be an overuse of orange shades in the above artwork. Brooks' other covers made slightly better use of colors (except for the horrid palette for Salute the Dark) but I'm really unconvinced by this one. At this point, though the first few covers were really quite good, I'm not seeing how these will help sell more of Tchaikovsky's books than their previous covers. But, alas, there's nothing to do but sit back and wait to see what Brooks delivers for the remaining volumes (and hope for the best).

I'm much more a fan of this second cover, for Jay Kristoff's forthcoming debut, Stormdancer. For one thing, unlike Brooks, it appears Colin Thomas can actually competently draw human figures. Much can be said about the artwork's reliance on oriental-themed imagery, but from what I've heard of Stormdancer, it seems to fit. It's a shame they couldn't get a bit more steampunkery into the cover since the novel has in fact been described as: "an adventurous dystopian fantasy with a hint of steampunk and a flavour of feudal Japan." It's also a shame that this is purely and assortment of images assembled by designer Neil Lang, rather than wholly original art, but I have to give him credit for his success. The cost-effectiveness of such system, as opposed to commissioning an illustrator, is also understandable.

I heartily recommend clicking on the link below the cover, it will take you to the cover launch post on the Tor blog, which includes both Kristoff's and Lang's comments on the cover, and new tasty details on the plot.