I love a good list, especially when I can use the prompt to push some of my favorite books on you guys.
Here are some great reads that also happen to have at least one edition with some gloriously witchy cover art.
Gideon/Harrow/Nona the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir – Artwork by Tommy Arnold
A necromancer is a type of witch, right? So this totally counts! And while Tamsyn Muir’s Locked Tomb series really doesn’t need my recommendation, I wanted to mention it because of my journey with this series. See, I was one of the very few people who did not like Gideon the Ninth, who, in fact, thought it was messily plotted, too ambitious, didn’t spend enough time on the world building or developing the characters (other than Gideon herself), and so on. Then I read Harrow and, despite my prejduices, liked it. And Nona just completely swept me off my feet and turned me into a fan.
I am so, so glad about that because as much as I enjoy writing a ranty review, I would always much rather love a book than hate it. And it’s so much more fun being part of the fans than looking at them from the outside, not understanding what they see in a given book.
And because this is about cover art – props to Tommy Arnold who does a magnificent job on the covers. They are beautiful, they are funny, they depict the characters so well. I’d call them pretty much perfect.
The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow
Okay, one of these covers does not, technically, have witches on it, but I like both of them so much, I couldn’t choose. And it’s, yet again, a book I heartily recommend you read. What if the suffragist movement was made up of witches, what if witchcraft lived in women in secret, in all the little things we used to do that men considered beneath them? Alix Harrow asks these questions and then some in this beautiful tale of three sisters who are as different as can be, but who prove that family is family, always.
The covers were done by Lisa Marie Pompilio and the inimitable Rovina Cai, respectively.
The Winternight Trilogy by Katherine Arden
Depending on how you see Vasya, the protagonist if this amazing trilogy, you could say there’s a witch on each of these stunning covers. Katherine Arden dives into medieval Russia where she follows a young girl who can see the spirits that people used to believe in, and befriends them. Meanwhile, Christianity is threatening to take over and push these household spirits and old deities to the sidelines. Vasya gets caught in a religious and a very real war in this atmospheric, magical series that I couldn’t put down. I love these books so much, I bought multiple editions of them.
The artist who created these beauties is Robert Hunt.
Tiffany Aching by Terry Pratchett
I adore the witches of Lancre and I adore the next generation of witches on the Discworld just as much. While Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg always make for eye-catching covers, I chose Tiffany Aching for this prompt because I not only like her covers as such, but also how she ages on them.
The art by Paul Kidby is much more my style than the older Discworld covers (iconic though they may be). Looking at these all lined up neatly makes me tear up a bit, to be honest. What a story, what a wonderful author, what a wonderful person. You know what, read the Terry Pratchett biography as well. I did a few months ago and cried my eyes out. Why shouldn’t you guys feel that same pain, after all?
Uprooted and Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik
If we’re being nitpicky, only Agnieszka on the cover of Uprooted is really a witch, but I loved both books and I really like how the covers go together (even though I have the more simplistic UK covers myself). Both of these are fairytale-esque books, but with a flavor all their own. In Uprooted, Agnieszka is surprisingly chosen by the local dragon (who’s really a man) as his apprentice witch, and they have to fight a super sinister evil forest. I get goosebumps just thinking about it. Also, although the romance might not be everyone’s cup of tea, I thought this had one of the best kiss scene I’ve ever read.
Spinning Silver starts out as a Rumpelstiltskin retelling (very loosely based on the fairy tale), but veers into epic fantasy territory. I had some quibbles about the use of POV but overall, I adored this and its romances as well.
Artist Scott McKowen did these lovely, scratchy illustrations that depict the characters and key elements of the stories so well.
And that’s it for my witchy cover art. I’m sure there are many more books that fit on my TBR, but I wanted to pick ones I’ve already read and could recommend wholeheartedly. Now. On to the next witchy prompt.
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