cover love: war book showdown edition

When I sit down to write my Cover Love posts, I normally have one cover in mind, ready to fawn all over it criticize it respectfully. It’s rare that I dish out cover love to two pieces of cover art that remind me…of each other.

I’ve had my eye on Stracher’s The Water Wars for some time now. I’ve picked it up in my bookstore, flipped through its pages, and even with my slightly waning hate for faces on covers, this one has always drawn me in. 

There’s something about photography-based covers that always make me look a little closer and stare a little longer. On the one hand, photography presumably gives us a snapshot of real life, or our perception of real life. It’s easy to question the physics of the composition within cover art. But 2011’s photography makes us second guess and assume that everything’s been retouched and smoothed over. It’s easy to assume that an artist who isn’t blatantly creating a heavily edited comp is a liar.

Then you’ve got covers like The Water Wars and The Pearl Wars that flaunt the fact that they’re not out to tell any kind of realistic truth. When I see The Water Wars’ cover, I don’t believe that it’s a story about people crying buckets of angry tears all over each other. But I’m intrigued because of her expression and the title and the how did they do that awesome water thing. Same goes for The Pearl Wars. Sure, I’m led to believe that the contraption that Jesse (or is it Cassius?) is wearing on his face is real — even though I know it’s not. The fact of the matter is, both of these covers illustrate a different version reality — and make them seamlessly believable. Similar in tone, they both give you a helpful serving of impending doom with a side of dread. 

Kudos to the team behind The Water Wars (RD Studios along with photographer Kassandra’s intriguing photo) and The Pearl Wars cover (designer Kevin R. Brown and illustrator Derek Lea). For books that revolve around wars, I can honestly say the battle for my cover art lovin’ heart has been won by you both.

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6 thoughts on “cover love: war book showdown edition

  1. LOL I thought that the person on The Water Wars was a guy at first. I agree with you though, even though I hate people on covers, it’s really cool the way they use fancy photography tricks to give it a cool sci-fi edge. Kinda makes me want to read TWW without even really knowing what it’s about 🙂

  2. I love love love both of these covers and I can’t wait to read The Pearl Wars. Gorgeous cover, that one. I’ve read The Water Wars – it was my first Kindle download, in fact, which makes me a little sad because I wish I had the hardback of this book, but the book itself is only kind of ok, so I doubt I’ll buy it twice. The Water Wars has a great premise, but it’s a stand-alone book that really should have been a trilogy. Too much happens without enough given to any one scene because there’s not enough pages in one book. It felt like I was on a museum tour of the end of the world and the tour guide talked too fast and moved us right alone from one exhibit to the next. I could have read this story in three books and been very, very pleased.

  3. For some reason, whenever I see the Water Wars cover I think “Hey! It’s the child empress from Neverending Story all grown up!” and then I’m like “dude, why you still crying, he totes gave you a name – granted no one knew what he said, but still, name called.”

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