My American publishers, Sourcebooks, are getting set to re-issue the novel I wrote in the winter I lived in Wales – NAMED OF THE DRAGON – and they'd like your vote on their shortlist of covers...
I make no secret of how deeply I adore my Sourcebooks covers, nor of how much I appreciate the hours of work and effort that go into them. If you want an inside look at the process, you can read this excellent Q&A post that Sarah Wendell from Smart Bitches did with Sarah Cardillo from Sourcebooks, all about the evolution of my covers.
You can see what a great job they did of blending their "refresh" of the cover style for the new book, A DESPERATE FORTUNE, into the already established "look" of the collection.
And now they want to do their best with NAMED OF THE DRAGON. Here's what the story's about:
The invitation to spend Christmas in Angle, on the Pembrokeshire coast, is one that Lyn Ravenshaw is only too happy to accept. To escape London and the pressures of her literary agency is temptation enough, but the prospect of meeting Booker Prize nominee James Swift - conveniently in search of an agent - is the deciding factor. Not that she expects it to be a restful holiday. Her travelling companion and bestselling client, Bridget Cooper – James's current girlfriend – has a reputation for mischief. Already Bridget's eye is wandering, taking in James's charming antique-dealing brother, Christopher, and their neighbour, the difficult and mysterious Gareth Gwyn Morgan.
More disturbing, though, is the sad figure of Elen Vaughan, recently widowed and with an eight-month-old son whose paternity is a subject for local gossip. Elen's baby arouses painful memories of Lyn's own dead child and strange, haunting dreams, in which a young woman in blue repeatedly tries to hand over her child to Lyn for safekeeping.
Who is the father of Elen's baby? What is the eerie, monstrous creature of Elen's dreams that tries to ensnare her son, and what makes her so sure that Lyn has been sent to protect him? As Lyn begins to untangle the truth behind the stories, she finds an unexpected ally in Gareth Morgan, and the secret she discovers leads her to an encounter with the past that will change her life forever.
The final cover they choose might end up being none of the ones here, but as part of their process they've asked me to ask for your feedback, so they'll have a sense what direction to take.
So if you have a minute, please comment on which of the four cover options below is your favourite, and why. What works for you? What doesn't work? Your input and opinions will be useful and appreciated by the Sourcebooks team.
And as soon as the cover is finally decided, I'll post it up here!
Thanks so much.
Which one's YOUR favourite?