Cover reveal – The Alchemy Of Sorrow.

The image shows a green textured paper torn diagonally across a book cover. Not much is visible beyond the text “of Sorrow” a portion of a person’s head, and what could be some broken glass, plants, and a bit of broken pottery.

Welcome bookworms! Todays blog is a very special one. Way back on February 1st of this year, I took part in my first Kickstarter campaign. I had just finished M. L. Wangs phenomenal book, Sword Of Kaigen. No other book as had such an impact on me as this one did, it brought some emotions up that I had not felt in a while. It felt cathartic as well as bringing back memories of someone I lost a long while back. My father died of Leukaemia when I was 17, almost 27 years ago now. I never really dealt with my grief in a way that was healthy for me until in my mid to late 30’s when I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety. This lead to a years counselling which helped me realise that all my the paths of depression, self-loathing and fears lead back to my fathers death and how I hadn’t process it properly.

So when I saw Virginia’s Kickstarter to create an anthology of stories, by a diverse group of incredible authors, all on the themes of grief and hope, I could not pass this by, so I pledged and have been following all the advancements and production news over the course of the past few months. It has been so exciting seeing this all come together and I am so proud to be invited to participate in the cover reveal. But first let me tell you a little about this wonderful anthology you all have to look forward to.

The Alchemy of Sorrow is due to be released on 1st November, 2022. It has 13 fantastic authors participating and they are M.L. Wang, K.S. Villoso, Intisar Khanani, Sonya M. Black, Angela Boord, Levi Jacobs, Krystle Matar, Virginia McClain, Quenby Olson, Carol A. Park, Madolyn Rogers, Rachel Emma Shaw & Clayton Snyder. Each story has been edited by Sarah Chorn and Virginia McClain and is published by Crimson Fox Publishing.

As I mentioned the themes of hope and grief permeate through the individual stories but here’s a little teaser of the book description to get you all the more excited:

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. 

So without further ado, lets reveal the cover for The Alchemy Of Sorrow…

[drumroll] …

The cover illustration for The Alchemy of Sorrow. Image description: to the right of the image (the front cover) a woman of color stands before a broken stained glass window. Her body is riddled with glowing golden cracks. A pair of similarly glowing swallows flitter above her hands, held at chest level. She is surrounded by dead vines that curl around the window as well--here and there, a few glowing golden flowers are blooming. To the left of the image (the back cover), a pair of glowing swallows face each other in midair, framed by a few glowing flowers. The rest of the cover shows dead vines and a sense of decay, including a broken ewer.

You have to agree this is absolutely stunning. I fell in love with this image as soon as I saw it (Which was a while back, hehe) and I think it represents what the anthology sets out to do.

The writers commissioned artist Zoe Badini to produce this amazing artwork. They wanted an image that represented each of the stories without exclusion. Most of the protagonists in the stories are female and to celebrate the diversity of authors and stories and to represent unity and the majority of the world’s population a woman of colour was chosen in a state of grieving. I think Virginia’s words describe this next aspect of the image best:

We also took inspiration from the Japanese practice if 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

– Virginia McClean

I absolutely adore this addition to the image. The fractured nature of experiencing grief, the feeling that your world is cracking and breaking away is perfectly captured in the cover piece.

But the light that seeps from the cracks in the woman’s skins transform into swallows which is a symbol of rebirth and the dying jasmine around her is renewed and revived by the light created swallows. Its such an evocative piece of art that perfectly captures the shattering feeling of grief and the transformative nature of rebirth and hope.

Together the authors and artist Zoe, have created the perfect visual representation of the stories within, using blues and yellows to accentuate the two themes. I am so excited to read the stories within and I am sure you all are too. Please find all the links below you need to pre-order ebooks and audiobooks and also ISBN details.

Pre-order link for ebooks:

(please note that while the amazon pre-order link might not be live at the time of me emailing this information, it should be live by the 29th)

Pre-order link for audiobooks: (currently not available for pre-order in audio but it will be in the next few months)

Print pre-orders coming soon! (If I get this info before the 29th I will send it along, but otherwise you can just say that they are coming soon.)

ISBNs for all editions:

eBook – 978-1-952667-92-3 

Hardcover –  978-1-952667-93-0 

Paperback – 978-1-952667-94-7

Audiobook – 978-1-952667-95-4

Thank you all so much for popping on the blog for this wonderful cover reveal. I will be releasing my normal blog on Saturday with a review of Gods Of Jade and Shadow, plus my July TBR.

Until next time, revel in the destruction of your TBR…

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