The Friday Face-Off: The Tower

Welcome to The Friday Face-Off, a weekly meme here at Books by Proxy. Join me every Friday as I pit cover against cover, and publisher against publisher, to find the best artwork in our literary universe

Gardens of the Moon by Steven Erikson

Welcome to the Friday Face-Off where this week we’re comparing covers that feature towers.

Featuring only a single tower between them, this week’s covers for Steven Erikson’s ‘Gardens of the Moon’ showcase the diversity in style in today’s fantasy books. Take a look and see which cover wins your vote this week!

Tor | Cover #1

Cover Art by Steve Stone

Subterranean Press | Cover #2

Cover Art by Michael Kormarck

| The Friday Face-Off: Winner |

The Tor cover, whilst not overtly eye-catching, creates a pleasing a fantastical composition. Bathed in green light, with a landscape shrouded in mist, the crumbling stone tower is a strong focal point, with the single illuminated window drawing the eye.  I love how the mist and the clouds filter to the dark black of the backdrop, and how realistically the landscape is rendered; and I love how the moon in the background lights the scene, creating an eerie green glow.

The Subterranean Press cover, however, is an entirely different creation. Focused on the back of a central, sword-bearing figure, this cover is bold, colourful and immediately draws the eye. I love the strong orange red glow of the sun which illuminates the figures face, the surrounding landscape and the birds which can be seen in flight; and I love the wisps of smoke that come off the sheathed sword. This cover was my immediate favourite.

Which cover wins your vote this week? Have a cover of your own? – Post the link below!

Amazon | The Book Depository | Goodreads

Next week’s theme is:

A little soil to make it grow

A cover featuring seeds/spores

Remember to check The Friday Face-Off Feature Page for upcoming themes

| Links |

H.P. @ Every Day Should Be Tuesday

Wendell @ Bookwraiths

Tammy @ Books, Bones & Buffy

Steve Smith @ Books and Beyond Reviews

Lynn @ Books and Travelling with Lynn

Mogsy @ The Bibliosanctum

S.J. Higbee @ Brainfluff

Brittany @ Perfectly Tolerable

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Book Haul: April 17

| The Air War by Adrian Tchaikovsky |

I’ve been looking forward to reading The Air War ever since I finished its predecessor, Heirs of the Blade. Shadows of the Apt is undoubtedly one of my favourite fantasy series so for those of you who have yet to discover this series, it comes highly recommended! I certainly cannot wait to start this one.

| Synopsis |

All is in turmoil as the world moves towards war. In Solarno, the spies watch each other and ready their knives, while Myna sees the troops muster at its border and emotions run high as it vows never to be enslaved again. In Collegium, the students argue politics, too late to turn the tide. In the heart of the Empire, new pilots have completed their secretive training, generals are being recalled to service and armies are ready to march. Their Empress, the heir to two worlds, intends to claim her birthright. And nothing – either within the Empire or beyond it – will stand in her way. A conflict is coming, the like of which the insect-kinden have never seen.

Amazon | The Book Depository | Goodreads

| The Man in the High Castle by Philip K. Dick |

The Man in the High Castle has been on my to read list for ever such a long while – so hurrah! I finally picked up a copy! A blend of some of my favourite themes and genres, this science fiction classic is sure to be at the top of the reading pile this spring / summer. 

| Synopsis |

It’s America in 1962. Slavery is legal once again. The few Jews who still survive hide under assumed names. In San Francisco the I Ching is as common as the Yellow Pages. All because some 20 years earlier the United States lost a war, and is now occupied jointly by Nazi Germany and Japan.

This harrowing, Hugo Award-winning novel is the work that established Philip K. Dick as an innovator in science fiction while breaking the barrier between science fiction and the serious novel of ideas. In it Dick offers a haunting vision of history as a nightmare from which it may just be possible to awake.

Amazon | The Book Depository | Goodreads

| Gardens of the Moon by Steven Erikson |

You wait years to finally pick up a copy of Gardens of the Moon, the first book in The Malazan Book of the Fallen, and then accidentally buy three copies at once! So after unintentionally purchasing the audiobook, ordering the paperback and then mis-clicking the one-click buy button on the e-book copy, I now have three Gardens of the Moon to ensure I finally read it!

| Synopsis |

The Malazan Empire simmers with discontent, bled dry by interminable warfare, bitter infighting, and bloody confrontations. Even the imperial legions, long inured to the bloodshed, yearn for some respite. Yet Empress Laseen’s rule remains absolute, enforced by her dread Claw assassins.

For Sergeant Whiskeyjack and his squad of Bridgeburners, and for Tattersail, surviving cadre mage of the Second Legion, the aftermath of the siege of Pale should have been a time to mourn the many dead. But Darujhistan, last of the Free Cities of Genabackis, yet holds out. It is to this ancient citadel that Laseen turns her predatory gaze.

But it would appear that the Empire is not alone in this great game. Sinister, shadowbound forces are gathering as the gods themselves prepare to play their hand….

Amazon | The Book Depository | Goodreads

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The Month Ahead: January 2016

The Month Ahead - JanIn The Month Ahead, I will be rounding up the books I am currently reading, the ones I will start this month, and the ones I intend getting my mitts on… if I haven’t already! I will also be sharing any news about features or posts on Books by Proxy, and anything in the book world that has me all excited!

| Currently Reading |

Apart from the myriad of read alongs and review copies I’m making my way through this January, I’m going to make the most concerted effort yet to actually pick up my neglected tomes and finish them! The Daylight War by Peter V. Brett is a book I cannot wait to finish – it just doesn’t fit in a handbag so well… or at all! The same goes for Joe Hill’s NOS4R2. Jane Austen’s Emma (which is in fact a pocket sized book) and The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding are however small enough for me to cart about – so there can be no excuses! January is the month when these books will disappear from my currently reading pile and ascend to that golden and somewhat dusty top shelf where they can live out the rest of their days safe in the knowledge that they have been read!


| January Events |

The 2016 Sci-Fi Experience
The 2016 Sci-Fi Experience

Hosted by Stainless Steel Droppings

We’re already well under way with December behind us and The 2016 Sci-Fi Experience continues on throughout January! So expect many more reviews, teasers and sci-fi goodies to keep you going throughout the month.heart

Vintage Sci Fi Month

Vintage Sci-Fi Month

Hosted by Little Red Reviewer

I’ll also be joining in with Little Red Reviewer’s Vintage Sci-Fi Month. I fear my foray into historic science fiction is supremely lacking so it’s about time I dusted the cobwebs off those older (and often considerably less hefty) tomes and discover just what made sci-fi what it is today.


Rosemary and Rue Read Along


The Rosemary and Rue Read Along

Organised by Lisa at Over the Effing Rainbow

Week 1 (Saturday 9th January)

Chapters 1-6 – hosted by Over the Effing Rainbow

Week 2 (Saturday 16th January)

Chapters 7-14 – hosted by Lynn at Lynn’s Books

Week 3 (Saturday 23rd January)

Chapters 15-20 – hosted by Anya at On Starships and Dragonwings

Week 4 (Saturday 30th January)

Chapters 21-End – hosted by Over the Effing Rainbow


I’ve been looking for a new urban fantasy series for a while now and the October Daye novels look like a very fair prospect. My book is at hand, my time has been scheduled – so no late catch-ups for this series! This is one read along I cannot wait to get stuck into!


Throne of Glass


The Throne of Glass Read Along

Organised by Rinn Reads

7th January

Discussion of chapters 1 – 13

11th January

Discussion of chapters 14 – 27

14th January

Discussion of chapters 28 – 39

18th January

Discussion of chapters 40 – end


After enjoying A Court of Thorns and Roses and with the impending release of the next book in that series, A Court of Mist and Fury, I thought it was about time to sample some more of Sarah J. Maas’ writing. Despite hearing some very mixed reviews for this series (and usually at one extreme or the other), I’m looking forward to getting stuck into Throne of Glass. And with the promise of Read Alongs for the rest of the series throughout 2016, I’m sure this will be a year where I up my YA count.


Blog Tour - The American

Blog Tour: The American by Nadia Dalbuono

Review scheduled for 16th January 2016


| Book Haul |

I got a few books…


| January Goals |

To finish ALL of the poor neglected novels which I am currently reading

Status: 0 of 4 Complete


Have you picked up any great books lately or read any of those mentioned above? What are your goals for the month ahead? 

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