Cover Reveal: TEMPER by Nicky Drayden

Greetings, Voyagers! We’re so excited to share the gorgeous cover of Nicky Drayden’s TEMPER, which goes on sale on August 7, 2018.

TEMPER is set in a land similar to South Africa, where twin brothers are beset by powerful forces beyond their understanding or control. It’s a thrilling blend of science fiction, horror, magic, and dark humor—evocative of the works of Lauren Beukes, Ian McDonald, and Nnedi Okorafor—from the author of The Prey of Gods. 

Scroll down to read Nicky’s thoughts on this brilliant cover, and hear about the artist who drew it!


Promises and Pinkie Swears: The Art of Cover Art

We’ve all heard the line about how you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, except of course, there are plenty of times when you should. A cover is usually the first interaction a reader has with a book, and it needs to grab their attention while setting tone and genre expectations. The cover is a promise to the reader. An eternal bond between art and story. It’s a pinkie swear among…

Ahem. So, covers are important, ya know?

I lucked into some amazing artwork with THE PREY OF GODS (thanks so much, Brenoch Adams!), but going into my second book, TEMPER, I needed something different. Something darker. Something that promises to take readers on a spellbinding journey through a story caught somewhere between dark fantasy and horror. A story that’s cold, mysterious, and not completely of this world.

This cover, my friends, is that promise

Feeling a little nervous, a little intrigued?

Well, you have Thea Harvey to thank for that, an amazingly talented self-taught artist I came across while perusing the #drawingwhileblack tag on Twitter. I was browsing the hashtag, casually enjoying a fine selection of drawings and paintings, until I was struck by Thea’s tweet:



Way back when, during my college days, I briefly considered majoring in art, and though I never had the passion to fully pursue it, my appreciation of those who create with the visual arts has never dampened. I looked at Thea’s composition, her use of color, and her inventive technique and couldn’t help but think, “You are ready, now!”

I love that social media is getting artists exposure, especially artists from underreprented groups. I love that they’re learning from each other, sharing tips and techniques, finding their audiences, and building their careers. It’s hard work, I know it, but seeing people as passionate about their art as I am about my writing has given me little moments of joy. Most of the time, I just admire them from afar, but sometimes, when art and story collide, you get something that’s greater than the sum of its parts. And seeing how great TEMPER’s cover art turned out, I’m feeling the challenge to hold up my end of the bargain and make sure the inside of this book is as impressive as the outside.

Speaking of which, I’ve got edits to finish up, but I know you’ll definitely see more great work from this amazing artist.

I promise.



TEMPER goes on-sale 8/7/18. You can pre-order and read a full synopsis of the book here. And be sure to let us know what you think of the cover in the comments!



Harper Voyager on Twitter