Title Tease: Red Queen Sequel

This Spring’s “surprise” hit from HarperCollins was Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard:

“Surprise” is in quotes because — c’mon — look at this cover, read the description and you’ll see why it was a hit.
Red Queen > Description

Graceling meets The Selection in debut novelist Victoria Aveyard’s sweeping tale of seventeen-year-old Mare, a common girl whose once-latent magical power draws her into the dangerous intrigue of the king’s palace. Will her power save her or condemn her?

Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood—those with common, Red blood serve the Silver- blooded elite, who are gifted with superhuman abilities. Mare is a Red, scraping by as a thief in a poor, rural village, until a twist of fate throws her in front of the Silver court. Before the king, princes, and all the nobles, she discovers she has an ability of her own.

To cover up this impossibility, the king forces her to play the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks everything and uses her new position to help the Scarlet Guard—a growing Red rebellion—even as her heart tugs her in an impossible direction. One wrong move can lead to her death, but in the dangerous game she plays, the only certainty is betrayal.


First of all: Red Queen was a fantastic read.  Second: I’m not going to say much about the cover since it’s been out for so long now, suffice to say: I love it. It’s powerful, mature, minimalist and clear. For some reason I liken it to Geena Davis’ just kidding not Geena she’s kind of gravelly Allison Janney’s voice. And thank you for avoiding the Princess Dress.

For more about Red Queen cover, check out Victoria Aveyard’s blog entry about it. What I’m most interested in right now is while we wait for the next book (and related novellas) to come out, HarperCollins milking it’s success stretching the hype to reveal the title of book 2:

Red Queen Sequel title tease

Okay, the good:

  • Great idea on the not just a cover tease, but a title tease.
  • LOOK AT THAT DRIPPY BLOOD DROP! Great call-back, even if it’s just copied from the original…

Which brings me to the bad:

  • With this graphic, was it someone on their marketing team who photoshopped it, or it could have been a careless designer?
  • What’s up with choosing bright red for the text on the top? The bright red spot on the original cover only works because it is a slow gradient from the rest of blood on the crown.
  • The title is black on the original, but dark maroon here. This may be intentional, but it’s so dark it looks like it could have been an oversight.
  • The light source from the original is in the center, which makes sense with the crown. The gradient the above image is linear and makes the graphic look heavy.

That being said, I know it’s not a cover. It’s a social media graphic for a very clever campaign. I just need to get less worked up about this.

BTW, my guess1 for the title Guard Scarlet, which is a pretty lazy guess considering the Scarlet Guard is actually a thing in the Red Queen.

Red Queen
Victoria Aveyard
February 10, 2015
Book Jacket Designer: Sarah Nichole Kaufman

1At the time of writing this, I truly have no idea what the title is and would never reveal it ahead of time even if I were privy to it because of my day job. *smug smile* Ha! Perks of the publishing world, suckers.

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