Books, By the Cover

Warbreaker (By the Cover): Colors! Colors! More Colors!

Guess what I’m reviewing next week. Go on. Guess. You’ll never get it.

Up until recently, Warbreaker was one of the last gaps in my knowledge of Sanderson’s Cosmere. That, and the second Mistborn series (which I’ll get to sooner or later… after another Wheel of Time book or two). And now that that gap has been filled, I have got to talk about it. Extensively.

But before the proper review, let’s have a look at that cover, shall we?

Nice use of color!

This is a fairly simple, but effective, cover. It serves as a fascinating hook to those who haven’t read the book and anyone who has read it can pick up some fun details. It isn’t entirely perfect, but it’s pretty strong.

Foremost on the page is Siri, one of our most central protagonists. She’s seen kneeling on the ground in a colorful and elaborate dress, likely a reference to her first meeting with the God King. Further evidence of this can be seen in her hair, as white as a cloud. All except for one ribbon, which changes from red to orange to yellow to green and finally to blue. This both signifies her ability to change her hair color and serves as a hint as to the importance of color to the story.

At her knees rests a sword. This is the part of the cover that really doesn’t work. It’s either a generic sword, which Siri never uses in the story, or it’s Nightblood. If it’s the former, then it’s just a bit of fantasy flare that communicates the genre to the observer. If it’s the ladder, it’s a problem. For one: it doesn’t look anything like Nightblood. Two: Siri never uses Nightblood. It would make sense if it was Vivenna, but she never wears a dress like that or sits in that position.

Surrounding her and the sword is a void of blackness. This could be a simple artistic decision. Or it could symbolize how Siri finds herself surrounded by evil. All the schemes and plots and the coming war. It’s a stretch, I’ll admit, but that is an interpretation.

Overall, this is a fairly strong cover. It isn’t the most incredible we’ve covered up until now, but it’s far from the weakest. If you saw this in a library or a book store, it would definitely have more of an allure than some of its competition.

Granted, a good number of its contenders are just shirtless dudes. At least it was the last time I went into a library’s fantasy section.

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