coming in February to a bookstore near you…

From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review(!!!)

Sweeping onto the scene with flair and grace, this latest page-turner from bestseller Bishop (Dreams Made Flesh) flutters its eyelashes at you like a shy country maid and then sinks its teeth in like a hungry succubus. The maid is Lynnea and the succubus is Sebastian, and their unlikely romance is at the heart of the impressively unclichéd battle between light and dark raging through the world called Ephemera, where the land changes in response to the deepest desires and fears of the inhabitants. When the Eater of the World came into being, the Guides of the Heart shattered Ephemera into myriad pieces, each shaped by the will of a Landscaper and linked to other pieces by Bridges; they also cornered the Eater in a Landscape unconnected to the rest of the world. Now a foolish student has set it free, and Sebastian must help his cousins, Glorianna and Lee, a Landscaper and a Bridge of unusual power and talents respectively, to trap or destroy it. Bishop’s pure originality and lyrical prose bolster the occasionally uneven characterization, and the tender romances and friendships will delight fantasy readers tired of gore and lust.

Mmm…. flair and graceimpressively uncliched…. pure originality and lyrical prose…. I hope she delivers the sequel soon so I can read that one too.

24 responses to “coming in February to a bookstore near you…

  1. That cover is lovely.
    Congrats to Anne, and to you!

  2. I have to admit that the cover, while lovely, is not one that would make me pick it up off the shelf. Fortunately, all they had to do was put Anne’s name on it for it to make it onto my ‘must get’ list.

    • Say more about why that cover doesn’t snag you — I had shown it to a couple people back when I saw the initial sketch and got varied responses. I’m curious about what people think.

      • Is the plan to attract more of the mainstream romance market?

      • It looks like a romance novel to me, and since I don’t read romance novels, I would stay clear. But like , they just need to have Anne’s name on there to sell it to me. *g*

      • Honestly — when I saw the cover my first thought was Chris Kattan’s SNL parody of Antonio Banderas (“The How Do You Say … Ah Yes … SHOW!” “NO! Stop! Eet’s TOO SEXY!!!!”). :}
        My next thought was “romance novel”, which I don’t read, so I wouldn’t be likely to pick it up off a shelf at all, alas.

      • The cover’s edge scrolling and cloud cover make ‘Ephemera’ difficult to read. The same scrolling also eats the skeleton, I didn’t actually see the skeleton until it was mentioned by someone else and took a second look. The font used for ‘Sebastian’ should have been made bolder, perhaps a different color or even treatment to separate it from the author’s name. I really don’t dig the kerning between the s and t in Sebastien either.
        The cover to me has too much negative space (huge stratocumulo cloud and sweeping desert plains zzzz) that gets drawn to the sunlight diffused behind the clouds. It was mentioned that it appears that maybe the idea was to attract the mainstream romance market or perhaps to lean toward some of the other covers in the WiF (Women in Fantasy) hot market…. it is a near-complete departure from previous Anne Bishop cover stylings. If it was another author’s name on the cover, I would have walked by assuming it was a romance novel misplaced in the Sci-Fi/Fantasy section of the bookstore.
        …so there is my .02

  3. The guy on the cover bears a substantial resemblence to my ex-boyfriend, down to the leather pants and the poet shirt.

  4. While I’m not too keen on the cover myself, it’s Anne Bishop so of course I’m going to pick it up. 🙂

  5. OH I just recently discovered Anne Bishop (fairly new to reading fantasy, though I read alot when I was a teenager) and I think, I swear, I read an excerpt of this somewhere. Thanks for the heads up!

  6. Cool, looking forward to this.
    But also put me down as one of those not grabbed by the cover–it gives off historical romance vibes, not SFR.
    Without knowing the author, if I saw it shelved in the SF section I might have taken a glance. But if it was on a table display or a freestanding rack without genre identification, I would have assumed historical romance and skipped it. Which may be exactly what was intended, since if other readers have that reaction then you will get historical romance fans to take a look, and potentially gain new readers.

  7. I like the the cover but it doesn’t really make me think ‘fantasy novel’.
    Over the last several years I’ve noticed that cover art for fantasy novels often doesn’t look like fantasy. In fact, some of the cover look so unfantasy that I pass them by completely.
    It is and it isn’t judging a book by it’s cover. Fantasy covers that look like mainstream best sellers make me think it was mis-shelved or that I should expect a very dull generic book and not a ‘fantastic take me away from the real world’ kind of experience.
    I think part of it is the lack of color. Drab and washed out does not appeal.
    Simpler designs can be nice but not to the point of removing all visual excitement or disguising that the book is really a fantasy novel.
    Hmm…it’s like the cover art is done solely by graphic designers and not done by fine artists anymore. This gives us bland and commercial. Blah.
    I wish that the cover would give a better hint of what’s in the story too. If it’s a techno-fantasy I’d like a warning like a crunched up computer panel in the artwork or something. (Personal pet peeve).

  8. Okay, that review intrigues me enough to read it.

  9. Lovely review. Kudos to Anne.
    On the cover…strengthening the background elements could have helped to clarify the genre. Are those grisly skulls I see? Don’t see those on romance too often.

  10. *squeeboing*
    I’m definitely looking forward to this… then again, I’ve been a rabid fan of Anne Bishop for years. 🙂
    I like the cover, but I’m not a “hardcore” fantasy reader; I like romance, too, especially the more recent paranormals and fantasy/romance crossovers.
    I think the cover is fitting to the tone of Anne’s work. While she has enough non-romantic plot and elements to be classified as fantasy, she makes no secret of the fact that her heroes are modeled off those from gothic romances. (At least, that was the case with the Black Jewels, and given the rest of her work, I don’t think that’s changed.)
    It works for me … but it could be off-putting to hardcore fantasy readers who aren’t familiar with Anne’s work, because there is an unfortunate bias against romance in the SFF field. (Which I really don’t get–sure, there are bad romances out there, but that’s true of any genre.) On the other hand, I’m sure there are romance readers who are likely to pick it up because the cover is reminiscent of a romance novel.
    All in all, I think it’s a bit of a toss-up. *g*

  11. The review has just bumped this one up to the must-read category for me. That sounds WAY cool.
    But I also would have skipped over the book based on the cover. I looked at it and thought “Heathcliff.” And I’m past the teenage years of devouring books for their angst factor alone. 🙂

  12. Beautiful and classy cover, intriguing name-title, a Starred PW review, and Anne Bishop! Okay, I have got to get my hands on this book! 🙂

  13. I was hesitant to mention the succubus slip as well. Too bad the reviewer didn’t read the second paragraph of the book, where the word “incubus” first appears. Yeesh.

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