What was your intention for the cover?
I wanted to give a sense of what happens in the story. As you might imagine from the title, it’s about discovery and unwanted revelation, so the early mental image was for the reflection of a welcoming hand in someone’s eye. I also wanted to evoke the idea that something strange was going on, so distorting the colours inserted this sense of unreality.
A final element I really wanted was to avoid what I refer to as the ‘badass babe in black’ trope you see on a lot of urban fantasy covers. I’d specifically written Lea and Molly to avoid it and it seemed wrong to put it on the cover.
How did you create the cover?
I started by raiding Deviantart for stock images, then I attacked them with two free art apps on my Mac (Image Tricks Lite and SketchBookExpress). This cover is actually the third one I’ve created for the book, with the previous two being unusable as I wasn’t able to get permission from the creators of the stock. The general process was to convert both images to black and white, then layer the hand over the pupil, before messing round with filters until I was happy with the net result.
Are you happy with the end result?
Yes and No. The image evokes what I wanted to and I’ve had a few people like it when I showed it to them, which is what I was looking for. I had to make a few compromises when I was making it to deal with artefacts from the original images (there was quite a bit of blurriness around the edges of the eye) which means it’s not quite as sharp as some of its predecessors.
Is there anything you would change?
If I could, I’d have liked to have had access to some of the stock I used in my early drafts (there’s a wonderfully creepy eye I used for my first trial), but that wouldn’t have been legal, so that’s not going to happen. Beyond that, I’m going to come back to it after I’ve done some more covers for the other books I’ve got in the pipeline and learnt some more skills.
What do you think the cover says about your book?
Beyond ‘my creator is a little insane’? Well, hopefully it says what I wanted, which is that this is not your ordinary urban fantasy novel. Hopefully, it invites and intrigues the reader, pulling them into the story as it begins.
Published by BookCountry on Jun 10, 2013
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Find the book: Amazon, Goodreads
What happens when knowing about a secret makes you a part of that secret?
I was your average university student, looking forwards to the new term while starting work at my new bar job. Then everything changed. I was kidnapped by a man with impossible abilities, but that was nothing compared to what he showed me. There is another world hidden within and tangential to our own, one I that I was forced to live within. It is a world of strange powers, where emotions are as real as stone and we are granted strange, unpredictable abilities, but it is also a place of insanity, a gathering place of deadly conspiracies and dangerous choices. Knowing about it changes you, makes you into something not more than human, but different, and those changes are dangerous. Worst of all are the people who live there, divided and driven by the power they are gifted with.
We call ourselves Awakened, for we have had our eyes opened to the true world around us. Yet, we cannot Awaken everyone, for it would unleash a torrent of insanity that could tear both worlds apart. We have to keep this secret, but there are those who would endanger it, risk the world for a chance at making a fast buck or a touch of power.
My name is Aleah, Lea to my friends, and this isn’t the life I wanted, but it’s the life I’ve got and I’m going to live it. No matter what comes, whether it’s dodgy churches, mad martial artists or power-hungry fools, I’m going to do my best to survive, to thrive and to make something of this new life I have. Regardless of what happens.
My Thoughts: This is a creepy cover. I never would have noticed the hand in the pupil if I didn’t know it was there, but even without that, the distortion of colours makes this cover stand out. I think it suits a thriller or serial killer story more than urban fantasy, mostly due to the font, which is a bit hard to read in spots. I do love the starkness and overall feel of the cover though.
What do you think of the cover? Does it make you want to pick up the book?