Over the next few weeks, I have some exciting cover reveals for our Abbott and Lowell Forensic Mysteries. When Five Star closed down its mystery line, they returned the hard cover publication rights to us. And while we didn't want to continue to publish this series in hard cover, trade paperback seemed like the perfect print format. We commissioned all new covers for the series as created by Jess Danna Photography and we'll be bringing them to you one at a time. And as I find the process of making these covers interesting, we'll also look at how the individual designs came about.
DEAD, WITHOUT A STONE TO TELL IT depends very heavily on its sense of place.The salt marshes of Essex county are practically a character in the book. It's also an area that's near and dear to my heart and my daughters' who accompanied me to the marsh in Massachusetts on a research trip. So when Jess and I sat down to brainstorm the new cover, there was really only one possibility for us - our own photos of the actual marsh.
From a technical standpoint, Jess was given some challenges, but easily managed them. All our shots were taken in bright and cheerful daylight, but that wasn't the mood we wanted. We wanted something that captured the darkness and danger of the marsh.
She started with these two pictures:
She combined the images, removed any sign of life in the form of houses or outbuildings, changed day into night, added the correct star constellations for when the book is set in that location (September 2012), and then spent time working the colour tones to make them just right.
Honestly, I really love this cover. It's Matt and Leigh's marsh, right down to the last detail. Looking at it, I remember standing there, the sea wind blowing around us, hearing bird song and the rush of water through the marsh grasses. It's like a trip down memory lane, back to one of my favourite places.
Now, without further ado, here is the finished cover:
And here the full cover for the trade paperback print edition which will be available later in April:
More to come on availability in the coming weeks as we are actively finalizing this version of the series.
Next cover reveal - A FLAME IN THE WIND OF DEATH!