T5W | Favourite Covers

Welcome one and all to this week’s Top 5 Wednesday post! For those of you who don’t know Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme/challenge which was created by the wonderful Lainey from gingerreadslainey and is now overseen by the equally lovely Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. Every Wednesday, participants devise their Top 5 based on a given topic.

This Wednesday’s topic is Favourite CoversWe’ve done this topic in the past, but with so many new, beautiful covers, it is time for an update! 

As Sam has pointed out, this has been a popular Top 5 Wednesday topic in the past and I’m sure I’ve gushed about my favourite covers countless times in the past. So, for this Top 5 Wednesday, I’ve decided to focus on more recent favourite book covers, specifically my Favourite Covers from 2018 Reads. These might not necessarily be from books published in 2018 but they’re all books I read this year. So, without further ado, let’s see my favourite covers…

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T5W | Favourite SFF Cover Art

Welcome one, welcome all, to ‘Emma Remembers Top 5 Wednesdays Exists And Decides To Join In’… again. Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme/challenge which was created by the wonderful Lainey from gingereadslainey and is now overseen by the equally lovely Sam from Thoughts of Tomes. Every Wednesday, participants devise their Top 5 based on a given topic.

This Wednesday’s topic is Favourite SFF Cover Art and this is a Booktube SFF Awards Babble Crossover Topic – basically, it’s what it says on the tin, it’s a chance to show off some of your favourite science fiction and fantasy cover art! Book designers have been killing it lately, especially when it comes to very pretty fantasy cover design so it’s unsurprising to learn that a lot of my favourite covers handily happen to be SFF-related. Let’s have a little peek at the shiny shiny…

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Book Travelling Thursdays | Favourite Series Conclusion

168709Book Travelling Thursdays is a weekly meme for book bloggers which celebrates the distance a book travels around the world through its covers in different countries. It was created by Cátia and Danielle and you can visit the Goodreads group for more information.

This week’s topic is Everything has an end! Choose your favourite conclusion to a series. Now, given my unfortunate tendency to prefer standalone novels, or to have only partly read trilogies or series of books, or to have caught up but be a fan of an ongoing book series, this topic was actually quite challenging for me. So I’m going to have to be very, very stereotypical and choose JK Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

Confession time: I obviously bought this book the day it was released, but it took me weeks to finish it. I’m not sure how much of that was me not wanting to finish the Harry Potter books forever and how much of that was actually a reflection of how much I was enjoying the book itself. It was never my favourite book of the series (Prisoner of Azkaban or Order of the Phoenix probably are) but I can safely say it has been a grower and after nearly 9 years I think I have finally come to terms with it as a series conclusion and actually admitted that it works very well as a conclusion to the entire Harry Potter saga. It might not be many people’s favourite book but I think it is a fitting and appropriate conclusion. (Caveat: … were it not for all the deaths!)

But, more importantly for this post, let’s look at the covers…

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Book Travelling Thursdays | Siblings

168709Book Travelling Thursdays is a weekly meme for book bloggers which celebrates the distance a book travels around the world through its covers in different countries. It was created by Catia and Danielle and you can visit the Goodreads group for more information.

This week’s topic is related to siblings: National Siblings Day is a few days away. Choose a book that has your favourite bookish siblings. Although I did toy with the idea of featuring the Weasleys from the Harry Potter series, I decided to go classical and pick the Bennets from Jane Austen’s Pride and PrejudiceThese siblings may not be perfect, they may annoy the hell out of each other, they may be so very different, but in my opinion they make up one of the most entertaining families to read about in literature. (The 2005 Joe Wright Pride and Prejudice film is the very best at portraying this family dynamic on-screen, I highly recommend it, even above the seminal 1995 BBC miniseries!)

Since I’m sure Pride and Prejudice needs no introduction I’ll just move straight on to the covers themselves…

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Book Travelling Thursdays | Heroines

168709 Book Traveling Thursdays is a weekly meme for book bloggers which celebrates the distance a book travels by way of its covers. I’ve only recently discovered this meme thanks to the blog of the co-creator, Catia (the other being Danielle) and the Goodreads group, but I love the concept of it – particularly because it gives me the chance to see beautiful editions of books and develop some major cover envy.

This week’s theme is in honour of International Women’s Day which was celebrated on Tuesday 8th, and it is to: Choose a book with a badass heroine. Frankly, there are so many badass heroines I could have chosen for this theme since young-adult fantasy seems to be full of them at the moment – which is a brilliant thing, of course! However, whilst browsing through the books I read semi-recently, I recalled just how much I enjoyed this particular author’s take on the typical fantasy heroine – Erika Johansen’s The Queen of the Tearling.

The Queen of the Tearling is a book which tells the story of Kelsea Glynne, a girl whose ascendency to the throne is as surprising to her as it is to the court. Bundled away to foster parents when she was a child, she has been hidden deep within the kingdom for years until she is whisked away from the only home she has known by Royal soldiers since her biological mother turns out to have been the Queen of the Tearling herself.

Part-dystopian, part-fantasy, Johansen’s novel is not all about the big battles and rip roaring, swashbuckling action, so its heroine, fittingly, isn’t the sort of badass who swings a sword and sticks a knife in the gut of the nearest enemy. Instead, I think Kelsea is truly badass because, in a novel about social justice and court politics, she is the Queen that the Tearling might truly need.


Original cover & Favourite Cover – US edition, published by Bantam Press, 2014

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I adore this hardcover edition of the book, in fact I wish this was the one I owned! I think it’s a classy fantasy cover rather than gimmicky and it’s dark enough to hint at the darker and quite morbid undertones of the book, without giving anything away. The image of the castle on the hill in the distance is a wonderful bit of simple symbolism regarding Kelsea’s right to rule and the obstacles/distance she will have to overcome to get there. I also really like the font used, and the flourishes in the corners tie the whole thing together nicely. Overall a really classy fantasy cover that I’d love to have on my bookshelves.

 

Cover from my country – UK edition, published by Bantam Press, 2014

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The gushing I did for the US edition of this book is completely reversed for the UK edition since I pretty much dislike the UK covers. Whilst I really like the symbolism of the bear trap that also looks like a crown atop a pillow, and the grey/black/white and red colour scheme is normally my thing, the execution of the design leaves something to be desired, in my opinion. I think it’s the distressed/scratched overlay to the design – I’ve seen so many scratch and smudge patterns on graphics online that I can’t help but think it’s not a very subtle effect since it’s a bit cheap and gimmicky – sorry but that’s just one girl’s unqualified opinion.

Least Favourite Cover – Japanese edition, published by 早川書房

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There are some mildly unappealing covers for this book – or perhaps I’m just spoiled by knowing the beautiful US cover exists! – but I’m not hugely fond of this edition’s cover design. My usual bugbear of having a photo of a character on the cover applies here, but it adds to this sin by having the girl do that annoying pose where they are positioned facing away but turn and look over their shoulder ‘at the camera’, so to speak. It annoys me in casual photographs and photoshoots so I really can be turned off a book cover immediately if it includes that. It’s a shame because the shades of blue used are really quite lovely.


So there we have it, my Book Travelling Thursdays for 10th March. I’m really glad to see International Women’s Day celebrated in this week’s theme, I think it was rather apt.

What do you think of these covers? Which is your favourite?

Book Travelling Thursdays | Villains

168709Book Traveling Thursdays is a weekly meme for book bloggers which celebrates the distance a book travels by way of its covers. I’ve only recently discovered this meme thanks to the blog of the co-creator, Catia (the other being Danielle) and the Goodreads group, but I love the concept of it – particularly because it gives me the chance to see beautiful editions of books and develop some major cover envy.

This week’s theme is… Because some books have amazing villains choose a book with a character you love to hate! Whilst thinking long and hard about this, theme a quote from a particularly villainous character kept rearing its ugly head – “Fine. Make me your villain” – which I adore because I think it hints at a much more complex characterisation, and perhaps also how easily we denigrate people sometimes too easily as ‘villains’ in a way that makes the word itself lose some meaning and oompfh. Slightly philosophical musings aside, for that reason I’ve chosen to feature Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha trilogy, specifically Shadow and Bone, and the Darkling who is set up as the villain of the piece.

For those who don’t know, Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone is a young-adult fantasy set in the world of Russian-inspired Ravka, a kingdom torn apart by the manifestation of darkness called the Shadow Fold which contains all manner of flesh-eating creepy monsters. Enter Alina Starkov, an orphan girl who must leave behind the regiment, her best friend Mal, and the life she knows, when a dormant power lurking within her explodes, catching the attention of the powerful but sinister figure known as the Darkling. Under his direction she is taken to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite of Ravka. There she makes friends and enemies and is taught how to harness and channel her powers. Unsurprisingly, it is never that easy or simple, especially not with the Darkling’s involvement.

Now, onto the covers…

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Book Travelling Thursdays | A 2016 Re-Read

168709Book Traveling Thursdays is a weekly meme for book bloggers which celebrates the distance a book travels by way of its covers. I’ve only recently discovered this meme thanks to the blog of the co-creator, Catia (the other being Danielle) and the Goodreads group, but I love the concept of it – particularly because it gives me the chance to see beautiful editions of books and develop some major cover envy. My previous BTT can be found here.

This week’s topic is: Because some books stay with us forever!! Choose a book you want to re-read in 2016. I’m a serial re-reader so just choosing one single book to feature was tricky, to say the least, but I finally settled on one of my favourite novels of all-time: Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca.

For those unaware, Rebecca is a 1938 book penned by Daphne du Maurier and famously adapted onto film by Alfred Hitchcock in 1940, starring Laurence Olivier and Joan Fontaine. It tells the story of the shy, unnamed heroine who, at the outset of the novel, is working as a paid companion to a rich lady holidaying in Monte Carlo. It is here that she meets the mysterious Maxim de Winter, a rich and handsome widower who owns a famed Cornish estate named Manderley, the name of which features in the novel’s intriguing opening line: Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again. After their whirlwind romance in Southern France, Maxim returns to the estate with the new Mrs de Winter in tow, but slowly she begins to realise that the house, its staff, and perhaps Maxim himself are still haunted by the ghost of the first Mrs de Winter, the enigmatic and eponymous Rebecca, a haunting presence who, even in death, manages to cast a long shadow over the novel’s inhabitants and, indeed, the novel itself.

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Book Travelling Thursdays | Movie Adaptations

168709Book Traveling Thursdays is a weekly meme for book bloggers which celebrates the distance a book travels by way of its covers. I’ve only recently discovered this meme thanks to the blog of the co-creator, Catia (the other being Danielle) and the Goodreads group, but I love the concept of it – particularly because it gives me the chance to see beautiful editions of books and develop some major cover envy.

This week’s theme is… Everyone loves movies – choose a movie that is going to be adapted in 2016. I thought long and hard about this theme until the obvious came and slapped me in the face – J.G. Ballard’s High-Rise.

Directed by Ben Wheatley, High Rise is a film due to be released in March 2016 (at least in the UK). Based on the 1975 book by J.G. Ballard, it is one of my most anticipated 2016 releases due to its cast, particularly a certain Mr Hiddleston who is perfect to play the book’s protagonist Dr Robert Laing. If you’re interested in the film: here’s the trailer, and if not entirely hooked on the book already then the first sentence should solve that: “Later, as he sat on his balcony eating the dog, Dr Robert Laing reflected on the unusual events that had taken place within this huge apartment building during the previous three months.”

To provide a quick synopsis of the book to explain some of the cover designs, High Rise tells the tale of bachelor Dr Laing as he moves into a swish new development, the high rise, a new sort of luxurious living with everything you could possibly want in one building. Just when he becomes acquainted with his new home in the tower block, its advantages, and the cast of interesting co-inhabitants contained within, order begins to break down within its four walls and the highly stratified social order begins to collapse, leaving anarchy, dubious morality, and violence in its wake. Ballard’s rather dystopian book concerns itself with human (or animal) nature, violence, and the laws of the jungle – the most chilling element of High Rise is perhaps how easily an allegedly civilised society slips into criminality and primitiveness, order into disorder, and humanity into barbarism, suggesting that perhaps civilisation isn’t quite as civilised as it would like to think. Continue reading

Tag | My Life in Books

I was tagged do to the ‘My Life In Books’ tag by Ariana at The Quirky Book Nerd so thank you very much to her and her blog is lovely so do go take a look! Let’s get straight onto the tag…

Find a book for each of your initials.

mlib_1My initials are ELB so E is for Emma by Jane Austen – actually my name! L is for Landline by Rainbow Rowell – a book I recall enjoying but don’t actually remember much of aside from the fact its protagonist is a TV writer with a rocky marriage and finds a phone at her parents’ house that allows her to call her then-boyfriend-now-husband in the past? Because, who doesn’t find gaudy yellow landline phones that let them call the past? And finally B is for (The) Bone Season by Samantha Shannon – love it, love it, go read it!

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T5W | Title Fonts on Covers

I’m a sucker for a pretty cover, even better if it involves some typography or just a lovely font. Saying these things outside of the internet earns raised eyebrows but I feel like the book community here understands this love – which is why this week’s Top 5 Wednesday topic of Title Fonts on Covers is perfect. For those who don’t know, Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme created by the wonderful Lainey. So without further ado, my top 5 (and yes, actually ranked) list of Title Fonts on Covers:

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