Another month, another new cover for the latest e-book edition of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series. This time around it’s The Shadow Rising a volume regarded by many as one of the strongest in the cycle. Mat Cauthon, featured on the cover, is a fan-favourite, thanks in large part to the effortless humour he injected into an otherwise very serious story. What drew me to Mat, though, was the melancholy hidden just under that superficial humour. Though it may miss on the light-hearted nature of Mat, Sam Weber, the artist behind the illustration, captures that darker side perfectly by sacrificing details for mood and atmosphere.

Irene Gallo, of, talks about the process behind the cover HERE.

  • Peter V. Brett January 6, 2010 at 2:04 pm

    This is one of my favorite books ever, and I think that cover is fantastic.

    The night I read about Mat going through the ter’angreal doorways I had nightmares and was talking in my sleep. At one point I apparently sat up and shouted “Don’t go through the red door!”

    My wife still makes fun of me for it.

  • aidan January 6, 2010 at 2:58 pm

    That scene sticks with me more than any other in the seven Wheel of Time novels I’ve read. After that, Mat was my clear favourite.

  • Joe Sherry January 6, 2010 at 4:33 pm

    Oh, I like!

    He got the spear after going through the doorway, right? I don’t think he was very rakish right after that.

    Fantastic cover. I’d love to see these covers on some re-issues after A Memory of Light.

  • aidan January 6, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    I expect, given the poor quality of the cover art on later volumes of the series, that that’s where Tor is going with these re-issues. No way they spend that much money hiring some of the best painters in the business if they’re not going to use them on bookstore copies.

  • hagelrat January 7, 2010 at 11:16 am

    nice. I like that a lot.

  • Giacomo January 7, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    I could see myself buying books with these covers. The old ones? Not so much.

  • Mike January 8, 2010 at 8:38 pm

    Like Giacomo, this cover actually gets me to consider the possibility of buying and reading the book.

    I will admit that I have not read WoT, and that I have stayed away from it for various reasons — one of them being, perhaps superficially, the poor covers, which made the series seem a bit, erm, cartoonish (for lack of a better word at the moment).

    Yet this cover gives WoT the feel of having a certain gravitas and intrigue.

  • aidan January 8, 2010 at 9:07 pm

    Gravitas is a great word to describe this cover. It’s much more representative of the series than the DK Sweet artwork on the paperback books.

  • The Fantasizer January 9, 2010 at 12:38 am

    Well the ashandarei looks great matts dressing is good too but I think the man looks too sombre for someone with mat’s personality!
    Good artwork nonetheless.

  • Mike January 9, 2010 at 2:09 pm

    Thanks for that insight, Aidan. I’ve been considering giving WoT a second chance, so to speak, and now I just may.