Welp. It has been a looong time since we've had a Friday Face Off, and I know, I know, I've been promising to bring it back for ages, only to have it pop up for a week here or there, and then: nothing. And hey, that may happen again, I make no promises, but FOR NOW. . .
A startling cover change crossed my laptop a couple of weeks ago, and at first, I thought it had to be a mistake. It's for the The Winner's Curse trilogy, and it's not that the new covers are horrendous (they're not, I actually like them), and it's not that they look quite similar to another popular fantasy series (they do, they really do, but still... I like them). It's just that. . . I don't know why a change was even needed? I mean, that's often the case, hence the many, many FFOs we've had full of lamentations that things can't just stay the same (or that series' can't at least just be freaking finished first, so that we don't have mismatched covers, dammit!). But for this series -- I just don't get it. The original covers are striking, and as a series theme, they held their own and were instantly recognizable. And I thought the series was doing well, which would mean that the normal reason for a change (to boost sales) wouldn't apply, though I guess I may have been wrong? The new covers do project more of a sense of strength than the originals, which can be read as very defeated. . . And with all the splashes of color, the new versions might be considered more dynamic, and have a leg up over the understated elegance of the originals, for some readers.
(And to be clear, the series had already undergone a minor overhaul between the publication of the first hardcover and its paperback version/the rest of the series... so basically, with this change, each release will have brought with it a facelift.)
Either way, I like both sets of covers, but I'm definitely curious to see what you guys think! Take a look at both sets below, and then let me know in the comments which cover YOU prefer. Which would you reach for on the shelves? Which stands out to you more? If you've read it, which do you think suits the story best? In short,
Which one did it better?
Duke it out for your pick in the comments!