I'M SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS!!!
Sometimes it happens that there are stories you want to tell that just won't fit in your novel. Maybe they're outside the timeline, and not really relevant to the present, or maybe they're about secondary characters. The novel needs to stay true to its primary narrative. It isn't free to indulge in the fun little cul de sacs that you might wish to glide into and while away some sweet moments. Well, from the earliest days of writing Daughter of Smoke & Bone, I was really invested in Zuzana and her "violin boy," and I wanted to fit their romance into my novel somehow. But Daughter of Smoke & Bone wasn't their story, and I just couldn't, so it had to happen backstage.
In Days of Blood & Starlight, clearly I was still trying. There's this moment where Karou tells Ziri a little about Mik and Zuzana's first date. It was as much as I dared allow myself, and you can be sure that early drafts of that scene were longer! Again, it was indulgence. I had to stay focused on Karou's story, and Mik and Zuzana are a really important part of that, but there was no way to justify writing their romance the way I wanted to.
So I made it a novella!! It was such a joy to write! This was four years ago, and that novella was released in e-format only, but NOW IT IS COMING TO YOU AS A BOOK-SHAPED OBJECT! WITH PAGES! AND COVERS! And ohhhh the pages and covers are beaaauuuuuutiful, because this is a GIFT EDITION, and it is illustrated by the wonderful Jim Di Bartolo, who is super talented as well as awesome, and who I had the wisdom and good luck to marry sixteen years ago!
You guys are going to LOVE IT.
Our idea was that it would look like Zuzana's sketchbook, and that the drawings would be "done by her," so there's a lot of humor as well as gorgeousness. What I love is how the book feels like an artifact from the story itself, with the polaroids, diagrams, and notes all recreated, as though you're holding them in your hands. It's just so much fun. And the design! It's amazing. I'll have more to show you in the coming weeks. Wait till you see what's under the jacket!
(Is this not the best cover EVER???)
Night of Cake & Puppets comes out September 12,
and you can preorder it now from your preferred vendor!
Some sample art:
I couldn't resist taking a few snaps of the layout in my hands. (These are from the ARC; the finished copy will be even more gorgeous!)