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Here’s another Book Cover Smackdown! No particular theme this time around…just a few covers “artistic” covers of varying styles that caught my eye.

Your mission should you decide to accept it: play art critic! Tell us what you like and dislike about these covers…what are the pros and cons of each? Which one is best? Do any of them spark your interest?

Hotwire by Simon Ings (Gollancz | March 13, 2014)

A fast-moving cyberpunk thriller set in a world of thinking cities, ruthless corporations and mad orbital AIs. A novel that links the groundbreaking works of William Gibson to the new generation of writers such as Charlie Stross and Hannu Rajaniemi. Ajay had a future once, birthing intelligent cities for the Haag Agency. First Delhi, then Milan. But then he is seduced into betraying his employers and finds himself working for a city that wishes to become human. Ajay must steal some rare technology from a long-dead wetware expert, a new Frankenstein called Snow, a man now alive in an AI. A man who wants a new toy for his manufactured daughter…

A Different Kingdom by Paul Kearney (Solaris | February 13, 2014)

A different kingdom of wolves, woods and stranger, darker, creatures lies in wait for Michael Fay in the woods at the bottom of his family’s farm.

Michael Fay is a normal boy, living with his grandparents on their family farm in rural Ireland. In the woods there are wolves; and other things, dangerous things. He doesn’t tell his family, not even his Aunt Rose, his closest friend.

And then, as Michael wanders through the trees, he finds himself in the Other Place. There are strange people, and monsters, and a girl called Cat.

When the wolves follow him from the Other Place to his family’s doorstep, Michael must choose between locking the doors and looking away – or following Cat on an adventure that may take an entire lifetime in the Other Place.

This is Paul Kearney’s masterpiece.

Get Katja by Simon Logan (ChiZine | February 18, 2014)

Katja from Simon Logan’s award-winning Katja From the Punk Band is back! Free and on the mainland, she emerges from hiding, only to find herself hunted by debt collectors, mad surgeons, and a corrupt detective, all of whom will stop at nothing to claim her for their own. And behind this scramble lies the twisted mind of an old adversary, desperate to have his revenge. is the sequel to the award-winning Katja from the Punk Band which sees the titular character finding herself at the centre of a frantic chase by transvestite debt collectors, mad surgeons and corrupt detectives, all of whom are after her for their own reasons. And behind all of it is the twisted mind of an old adversary who will stop at nothing to take revenge on her.

About John DeNardo (13012 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

3 Comments on Book Cover Smackdown! HOTWIRE vs. A DIFFERENT KINGDOM vs. GET KATJA

  1. Three great covers here. It’s a little hard to pick, but I think I like A Different Kingdom best, especially the subtle circular cutoff on the two worlds, which is somehow striking without being instantly obvious.

  2. All these are great covers. But I’m going for Hotwire. It’s very appealing, something very different from what you are used to see. That white circle simply invites you to read the book, uncover what’s inside of it.

    A Different Kingdom has also a great cover, great contrast between warm and cold. All the work by Pye Parr is awesome.

    Get Katja may not have the best illustration, but it has strong composition and contrast.

  3. Get Katja, hands down. Timeless color, great author and title font, texture, simple direct subject literally (literature pun) coming at you. What’s the comparison here? ChiZine really knows what they’re doing. Can’t wait for February.

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