Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Cover art - "The House of Shattered Wings" by Aliette de Bodard (UK edition)

In March we saw the US cover for Aliette de Bodard’s upcoming novel, “The House of Shattered Wings”; in the meantime the UK cover has surfaced as well. Gollancz, the UK publisher, goes for another approach, more subtle, but no less interesting. The reference to the title can be fully glimpsed through the wings occupying the center of the cover, while their crystal like appearance leads the thought to a highly valued item, but also fragile and easily breakable. Paris being on ruins, following the Great Houses War, can be guessed by the aspect of Notre-Dame’s interior, the walls cracked here and there, graffiti written on them and the floor covered by water and debris. Now, from the synopsis we learn that Notre-Dame is actually a burnt-out shell, but this is clearer on the US cover rather than the UK one. I am not here to complain though, so I don’t have any quarrel with the Gollancz’s approach for their cover. As a matter of fact, I am not even sure which edition of Aliette de Bodard’s “The House of Shattered Wings” I would like to have on my bookshelves. Of course, I would love both of them, but due to a couple of impediments fulfilling that wish is far-fetched. But no matter the final choice, I will definitely have a copy of Aliette de Bodard’s novel on my personal library.

Here is also some of the early praise “The House of the Shattered Wings” is gathering.

“A superb murder mystery, on an epic scale, set against the fall out – literally – of a war in Heaven.
Paris has survived the Great Houses War – just. Its streets are lined with haunted ruins, Notre-Dame is a burnt-out shell, and the Seine runs black with ashes and rubble. Yet life continues among the wreckage. The citizens continue to live, love, fight and survive in their war-torn city, and The Great Houses still vie for dominion over the once grand capital.
House Silverspires, previously the leader of those power games, lies in disarray. Its magic is ailing; its founder, Morningstar, has been missing for decades; and now something from the shadows stalks its people inside their very own walls.
Within the House, three very different people must come together: a naive but powerful Fallen, an alchemist with a self-destructive addiction, and a resentful young man wielding spells from the Far East. They may be Silverspires’ salvation. They may be the architects of its last, irreversible fall…"

“THE HOUSE OF SHATTERED WINGS is a Gothic masterpiece of supernatural intrigues, loves and betrayals in a ruined and decadent future Paris — wildly imaginative and completely convincing, this novel will haunt you long after you’ve put it down.”
Tim Powers, author of THE ANUBIS GATES

“Darkly entertaining. de Bodard makes Fallen Angels entirely her own in this post-apocalyptic Paris near the turn of the century. The personal politics of necessity blend and clash with the politics of the powerful as people—mortal and immortal—attempt to survive.”
Michelle Sagara, author of THE CHRONICLES OF ELANTRA and THE HOUSE WAR series

“THE HOUSE OF SHATTERED WINGS exists in a rich, evocative Paris that is thick with magical history. Pathos and beauty intertwine in a novel filled with longing.”
Mary Robinette Kowal, Multiple-Hugo award winning author of THE GLAMOURIST HISTORIES

“Original and intriguing, this novel is a strange delight and a foretaste of great things to come.”
Justina Robson, author of THE GLORIOUS ANGELS

“An intense, beautiful, brutal journey written with an eye for the stunning, vivid detail and the cruel demands of duty, loyalty, and leadership. Its portrait of a ruined Paris ruled by fallen angels is one I won’t soon forget.”
Kate Elliott, author of the SPIRITWALKER trilogy

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