I am pleased to announce the cover of Alchemy of Sorrow
“Here be dragons and sorcery, time travel and sorrow.”
Here be dragons and sorcery, time travel and sorrow.
Vicious garden gnomes. A grounded phoenix rider. A new mother consumed with vengeance. A dying god. Soul magic.
These stories wrestle with the experience of loss—of loved ones, of relationships, of a sense of self, of health—and forge a path to hope as characters fight their way forward.
From bestsellers and SPFBO finalists to rising voices, 13 exceptionally talented authors explore the many facets of grief and healing through the lens of fantasy and sci-fi.
About the cover illustration:
For the cover of The Alchemy of Sorrow, we wanted to create an image that was evocative of all the stories contained within its pages, without being specific to any single one of them.
Since most of our stories have female protagonists, we chose to center the image on a grieving woman. We wanted her to be a woman of color, to celebrate the diversity of our stories and authors, and to represent the majority of the world’s population. We asked the artist to portray her standing among ruins, with her grief transmuting into light, which in turn begins to transform her surroundings.
We also took inspiration from the Japanese practice of kintsugi – in which a fractured piece of pottery is restored using precious metals mixed into the lacquer so that the item’s cracks become a beautiful feature of the piece rather than a flaw to be hidden away – and we asked if the woman’s skin could feature cracks lined with gold.
After receiving Zoe’s gorgeous artwork, the task then went to Virginia to design a text layout that didn’t detract from it. She did her best to convey all the information necessary and make it legible without obscuring too much of the artwork.
From those sketchy details, Zoe Badini conceived of this stunning image of a woman standing before a broken stained-glass window, with light coming from the cracks in her skin. The light forms swallows, a symbol of rebirth, and renews the dying jasmine around her.