More or less done.. I decided to take the series branding off the front of the books - it's always been 50/50 whether publishers include a series name on a cover or not, really depending on whether it's a selling point of the books. Quite a few of The Immortals' previous covers omitted a series name, relying on a strong unifying design across the covers to imply the connection.The current trend is towards leaving the information off and saving it for the spine and back cover.
I think the tendency more that ever to omit the information frm the front of a book has to do with the changing forums in which people encounter new books and the cover has to do its magic: often now, books are first seen as an inch-high thumbnail on Amazon (or Waterstones.Com of course) and the cover has to be a tiny poster for its book, making sure all the vital information is readable and uncluttered. So extraneous detail is being lost from the front.
At the same time the book-buyer's sensibilities and book-design literacy are getting more and more sophisticated. A publisher who wants to imply a classy book dials back the information and tries to make the cover look confident and clear. That's what I've aimed for: title, byline, and an illustration that just includes the essential elements.
I think these covers work at thumbnail. The text is certainly readable and if the content of the illustration might take a second more to identify I think enough stands out to convey the fantasy/YA/fresh tone I worked to create.
I must admit, I'm still not quite sold on Wolf Speaker quite working as well as the other two. The painting of Daine sits more leaden on the page for me. I'm sure I'll continue to tweak this cover, but I am largely very happy with the composition.
Also I suspect I'm going to have to create a matching cover for the final book in the series Realms of the Gods. My sense of neatness is already niggling at me.
Let's think, what animals could Daine be interacting with on that...?