Cover Reveal: Way Down Dark by JP Smythe

By Anne Perry

Posted on September 29, 2014 in Books, News with tags Book Covers, James Smythe

We’re delighted to reveal a brand spankin’ new cover today: WAY DOWN DARK, the first in the Australia trilogy by James P. Smythe. And here to introduce it is the man himself:

A little while back we – myself and the wonderful people at Hodder – announced the first book in the Australia trilogy, The Burning Depths. You’ll notice that the title on the strikingly lovely cover below isn’t that. No, we changed it. Why?

Well, it was a little… not quite right. There are depths in the novel, sure, and there’s a probably unhealthy amount of burning going on in them. But there’s more to it than that. So after much humming and hawwing, Anne Perry – my exceptionally brilliant editor – and I came up with this. Way Down Dark. Rolls off the tongue, and it’s right. Perfectly, perfectly right. It’s slightly strange and slightly off and somehow pretty fatalistic.

And the cover, of course, had to reflect the same things that the title did. So when I saw this image – of Chan, the novel’s main character, standing below the towers of the great spaceship Australia – it felt perfect almost immediately. And the font! It’s beautiful, somehow both art deco in style while having this slight futuristic edge to it. The whole thing is a pretty exceptional piece of work – and will work wonderfully for the rest of the series, moving forward.

If you don’t know, Way Down Dark is the story of Chan Aitch, the last survivor in her family line aboard the ark-ship Australia. When ships fled Earth as it was dying, people were crammed on and forced in, and over the generations, they’ve… devolved, somewhat. Now, the place is a mess of gangs and cults and fighting to survive. Chan’s journey leads her through the territories of the different gangs – with all the terror, violence and cannibalism (!) that goes with them – as she uncovers secrets about the ship, and about where they’re headed. As she goes, she’ll make great allies, even greater enemies, and some pretty near-fatal decisions. Oh, and she’ll head – titular line! – way down into the dark at the bottom of the ship, where the bodies of all the dead end up. And what she’ll find there… Well, for that, you’ll have to read it.

It’s released on 26 March 2015, with the sequel following six months later.


See you in March 2015!






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