The cover of ‘The Fires of Heaven’ was my favorite Wheel of Time cover so far. It was cool looking, enticing, brilliantly drawn, and perfectly depicts the climax of the story. That was the kind of cover I would put on my wall.
I wish I could say the same for the cover of ‘Lord of Chaos’.
To be fair, this isn’t the worst cover ever. The artwork is absolutely incredible! Just look at the background, dudes! The charred ruins all around them is beautifully terrible in its destruction!
For those who have read it, it’s pretty clear what this is. This artwork depicts the events of Dumai’s Wells, the final battle of the book. Standing atop the carnage, smoke billowing behind him, is Rand, freshly escaped from his prison in the box and staring down an Aes Sedai. Which Aes Sedai it is is kind of nebulous, but we know that is what she is thanks to the Flame of Tarvolen on her back. To the left, we can see the ruins of the wagon and a few corpses from the battle. Behind that, we can see the camp in which this all took place, a banner flying. Upon closer inspection, we can see that it is the White Lion of Andor.
And flying above Rand is a Shadowspawn. Which should not be there, because there were none of those in that battle at all.
My biggest gripe with this cover is the Aes Sedai herself. I love how she looks ready to either fight for her life or drop to her knees and beg forgiveness; that little detail fits the Aes Sedai perfectly. And I don’t mind that we don’t necessarily know who she is. But from her dress, you’d think she was a Blue sister, which is the only Ajah that it could not be. That, and the Flame of Tarvolen on her back just looks like a big sticker that someone put there. Since when do the Aes Sedai wear that symbol?
Also, Rand looks more goofy than menacing, if you ask me. Like, button up your shirt, dude. Are you doing a modeling gig or are you unleashing your full wrath upon those who have wronged you? And why is he so clean? Dude spent days locked in a box and fought a battle!
Overall, ‘Lord of Chaos’ has a fine cover. It’s far from the best one in the series. But the artwork is as impressive as ever, despite my nitpicks. It isn’t as alluring as previous covers, but it’s still far from the worst one yet.
Which is almost exactly what I’d say about the book itself, verbatim.