Allies and Assassins- Don’t Judge a book by its cover!

Publishing date: May 27th, 2014

Do you ever see a cover and immediately have to read the book? This happens to me nearly every day in the library and when I visit the book store. Some covers can tell you a lot about what the books is about. Some covers leave you scratching your head in confusion. They have nothing to do with the book and you wonder who on earth in the publishing department came up with the idea.  

Take the ARC copy of “Allies & Assassins.” When I first saw this book I thought “Hey, this looks like an awesome fantasy.” It totally has a huge battle ax! Bring on the epic battles! Then I turned it over…. The promo sentence at the top of the back cover says:

Game of Thrones meets Law & Order in Justin Somper’s debut YA novel! 

Wait a second? Game of Thrones and Law and Order? How on earth are those two TV shows related?Also, I don’t know of any (correct me if I am wrong) die hard teen Law and Order fans. The back cover talks about the death of Prince Anders, and how his younger brother and the kingdoms Physician’s apprentice try to solve the murder. There is nothing on the front cover that even hints at this book being a mystery. It is a giant battle ax… a giant… battle.. ax..

So, I decided to read it and see if the book was anything like it’s cover. Verdict… It’s not! However, it is a book that I ended up reading till the early morning hours and it turned out to be pretty decent mystery. Other than this being set in a medieval type land with Princes and Castles, there is no fantasy to be had in this book whatsoever. You can see a tiny bit of Game of Thrones if you squint.. and you have to squint pretty hard. Otherwise it is a mystery novel all the way through.

Moral of the story? Don’t judge a book by it’s totally unrelated cover. Especially as a Librarian!! Readers, if you like mystery that is in a medieval setting you might consider this book. If you are looking for dragons, epic battles, and other fantasy elements this might be a pass. I would love to hear what you think about this one. Do you think that the cover matches the story? What kind of cover should this book have instead?


1 Comment

  1. thejedilibrarian

    The perfect books that might combine those two are Tamora Pierce’s Bekka Cooper books. They are set in her Tortall universe, with magic etc, but Bekka is this world’s version of a cop out to solve murders etc. One of them involves an assassination attempt on the royal family, so I can see the combo in that.

    Teenage Law and Order fans? I’ve never met one. I was a teenage JAG fan, which is kind of the military version, but I’ve never gotten into Law and Order.


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