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Here’s something fun I never thought I’d be able to ask about YA cover art:

What’s black and white and red all over?

(And looks like a Rorschach test?)


I’ve had my eyes on this particular cover ever since Thea from The Book Smugglers posted it as on her radar.

It’d be easy for me to start tagging Ellison’s The Butterfly Clues with several different descriptors that make it a likable cover. Intriguing. Mysterious. Simple. Haunting. I certainly wouldn’t describe it as pretty, even with its title and object of affection.

But as much as I do like the final cover art, I wish Egmont USA had gone with an earlier design:


It’s easier for me to picture a “seedy, violent underworld” (taken from the novel’s synopsis) with a cover like this. How awesome would it have been to see a final print with that aged paper in hardcover? Both designs come from the incredibly talented Jen Heuer. I’m not even kidding when I say that looking at all of her design work makes you want to read every single book she’s had a hand in fashioning. It’s unreal.

And while I prefer the unused cover art, I understand why Egmont USA chose to go with the The Butterfly Clues’ final design. I’m still excited to see what the novel looks like out in the wild.

What say you? Do you prefer one cover over the other?

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Bryan Williams