It has been said that no new posts come to Penprints during the month of November unless something momentous occurs. Well, something momentous has occurred.
Nadine Brandes has written a new historical fantasy novel, and today is the day the title and cover are revealed to the world. And you have a chance to win an ARC.
But first, the all-important Blurb.
Thomas Fawkes is turning to stone, and the only cure to the Stone Plague is to join his father’s plot to assassinate the king of England.
Silent wars leave the most carnage. The wars that are never declared, but are carried out in dark alleys with masks and hidden knives. Wars where color power alters the natural rhythm of 17th century London. And when the king calls for peace, no one listens until he finally calls for death.
But what if death finds him first?
Keepers think the Igniters caused the plague. Igniters think the Keepers did it. But all Thomas knows is that the Stone Plague infecting his eye is spreading. And if he doesn’t do something soon, he’ll be a lifeless statue. So when his Keeper father, Guy Fawkes, invites him to join the Gunpowder Plot—claiming it will put an end to the plague—Thomas is in.
The plan: use 36 barrels of gunpowder to blow up the Igniter King James.
The problem: Doing so will destroy the family of the girl Thomas loves. But backing out of the plot will send his father and the other plotters to the gallows. To save one, Thomas will lose the other.
No matter Thomas’s choice, one thing is clear: once the decision is made and the color masks have been put on, there’s no turning back.
Now. The Cover.
Hold onto your hats, kids.
Are you holding onto them?
FORGET THE HATS LET’S GET TO THIS AMAZING COVER.
Here. we. go.
Reaction to the Cover.
No words or gifs can suffice.
But. If I was forced to share the honorable mentions, they would include but would not be limited to the following.
5 things I’m most jazzed for in Fawkes.
- The male protagonist. The YA market is flooded with so many books with female protagonists (aka: main characters), and it will be so refreshing to have a story from a guy’s perspective. This adds much-needed variety to the contemporary YA market and my bookshelf.
- Color power & color masks. Um, what is there not to be excited about with these two? I HAVE SO MANY QUESTIONS AND SPECULATIONS ABOUT THE COLOR MASKS ESPECIALLY (first and foremost: where can I get one?).
- Duels. It’s 17th century England, people. There’s bound to be a duel or two, and I expect them to be quite fantastic (especially if they include the mysterious color powers/masks).
- The Gunpowder Plot. Well-written assassination plots/conspiracies are always exciting, but when you throw gunpowder into the mix, things get downright explosive (see what I did there?).
- Treachery in general. The Blurb and Cover make me think that there will be more treachery and betrayal than just in the Gunpowder Plot itself. I’m jazzed (and scared?) about the relational treachery that could happen and how the characters will work through it.
- BONUS: The Stone Plague. What even is this thing???????? Where did it come from?? How did Thomas get it???
My current leading fan theories.
The Blurb leaves me with a lot of questions and a lot of different ways this story could go. So, in no particular order, here are some
wild c onspiracy completely solid theories (mostly about the Stone Plague).
– Guy Fawkes started the Stone Plague and ends up being the ultimate Bad Guy *wink wink* in Fawkes. This just seems like a viable possibility; if he’s plotting an assassination, he’s a shady character.
– The color masks are the source of the Stone Plague. As no bueno as that would be, it would follow with the typical fantasy rule that magic has to come with a price.
– Thomas has two personalities–the one that’s more-or-less innocently suffering from the Stone Plague and then the one that created the Stone Plague. (This one sounds out there, but is it really? Is it????)
– The family of the love interest is behind the Stone Plague which would kind of drive a wedge between Thomas and his girl (I mean, can we blame him?).
– The Gunpowder Plot is successful and King James dies (it’s historical fantasy, people, anything can happen).
– Thomas dies in the end. This one isn’t so much a thought through theory as it is a very real, rational fear since Nadine Brandes has no qualms about killing off nearly all the characters we know and love (case in point: the Out of Time Series). And also, I find the cracks in the mask on the cover quite concerning (and so should you).
– Whoever actually started the Stone Plague steps in and kills all the characters we come to know and love over the course of the book (remember, no one is safe). And then King James finds a cure for the Stone Plague, and the world cruelly keeps turning.
Now, I haven’t had long to ruminate on the Blurb and the Cover, but I’m sure even more theories will develop. And, of course, they’ll all be as
wildly outrageous (but are they?) well-thought out as these I’ve shared today. Think about it. We haven’t even gone into the king’s call for death, why the Igniters and Keepers started fighting in the first place, or the color palette used in the cover. My frantic brain keeps churning theories out (like, what if no one’s responsible for the Stone Plague? What if it just came about and there’s no explanation and no cure and no bad dude to pin it on? Hmmmm? What then???).
Other stuff you need to know to be In The Know.
Be sure to check out Nadine Brandes’ original post about the cover reveal to get in on all the fun there and see if she has any exclusive content WE MUST KNOW about Fawkes.
Fawkes will release July 10, 2018. (Breathe, people, breathe. July 10 is only 239 days away. We will find a way to survive.
And don’t forget to enter the giveaway for the ARC.
And last, but not by any means least, the all important pre-order link.
Well, that’s all I’ve got for today, kids.
I am. so. jazzed. for Fawkes and shall pre-ordering myself a copy (or two or three).
What about you? What are your thoughts on the Cover? And what do you think of the premise? Which of my fan theories do you think is most viable (correct answer: ALL OF THEM)? What theories of your own do you have?