Cover Art Differences: Vicious – V.E. Schwab

I warned you guys earlier this week, I’m really, really into cover art. You guys wanted me to post more cover art, so here I am.

These two covers for the same book were pointed out to me on Twitter. A few things caught my attention right away. First, I usually like UK covers more than US covers. I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s because people in England drink more tea, and that inspires their covers. Whatever the case, I like the US cover more for this book. Weird, but true.

Secondly, and perhaps the most important, these two covers have such different tones it’s staggering.

U.S. Cover:

U.K. Cover:


The U.S. cover makes me think of a more mysterious, sprawling sort of epic involving big cities, power trips, and moral ambiguity. The U.K. cover makes me think that the book with be a fast noir thriller much like the other noir thrillers I’ve read in the past. Maybe I’m the only one that feels that way, but it’s rare that I see U.S./U.K. covers for the same book that make me feel and think of each book so absolutely differently.

Regardless, I started reading this as soon as the I opened the package.

So, what do you think? Am I completely out of touch with reality regarding these two covers? 

Which cover is more reflective of the work as a whole? I don’t know. I’ll inform you as soon as I finish it.


About the Book

Published by Tor

Victor and Eli, due to a research project gone wrong, become ExtraOrdinaries with supernatural powers. Ten years later Victor escapes from prison,determined to get his revenge on the man who put him there, while Eli has spent the years hunting down and killing other EOs. Driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the arch-nemeses have set a course for revenge…

6 Responses

  • No, the UK cover reads “Thriller. Noir.” and the US cover reads…I’m not sure epic fantasy. Not quite sure what they are going for. “Urban fantasy?”

    The blurb seems to fit the UK cover better.

  • I usually prefer the UK covers as well and am patiently waiting for a particular book to come out so I can complete the trilogy with the UK versions.

    In this case, I actually like both, but they have amazingly different vibes going on. What is the thinking behind the cover differences? I know there has been controversy over certain cover changes (such as changing/removing PoC characters etc), but sometimes the differences don’t seem to have a reason.

  • Mez

    In this case I prefer the US cover too. The UK one looks like a contemporary thriller.

  • I generally prefer minimalist covers like the US one – good contrasting colours.

    That said, I love me some cover paintings;

  • I prefer the US cover, thought I think the gritty style of the UK cover is meant to capitalise on the success of crime dramas like Luther, Sherlock and Whitechapel (and to a lesser extent, Misfits, which deals with superpowers).

    Still, the US one has a better vibe to it 🙂

  • Heh. I almost always prefer the US covers, but in this case I like the UK one way better.

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