Lou Ander's superhero anthology has been one I've been eagerly anticipating since I heard about it. Assuming it wasn't just an April Fool's Day prank, Lou debuted the cover of With Great Power . . . over on his blog.
Cover Artist: Trevor Hairsine
Aside from the Edited by Lou Anders corner (which seems out of place at first before you realize its a comic tag like "Meanwhile") I think this cover is really strong. It conveys a strong comic book vibe with a mysterious character (hero or villain?) posed against a disastrous background. I like the way the lines of the cape flow into the diagonally set text which works well to make the cover feel less text heavy than it actually is. The art is simple but powerful and I like the little imperfections in the strange hero's costume. And no one can deny that it's going to catch the eye of the comic book audience (but will they be in the prose section of the bookstore anyway?)
Another interesting note is that the character on the cover isn't actually in the book. According to Lou Anders this is for two reasons "One, wanted something to convey the entire book, not just one story. Two, in comics, when an artist illustrates a character for the first time, they share in copyright. Assured the comic writers who contributed to this only they owned the characters they created." I know comic book character ownership has been a much debated issue over the years and it's strange to see the effects even here on the cover of a prose anthology. Never can be too careful with your work, I suppose.
In case you missed the post the first time around, here is the Table of Contents again.
- Introduction: The Golden Age - Lou Anders
- "Cleansed and Set in Gold" - Matthew Sturges
- "Where their Worm Dieth Not" - James Maxey
- "Secret Identity" - Paul Cornell
- "The Non-Event" - Mike Carey
- "Avatar" - Mike Baron
- "Message from the Bubblegum Factory" - Daryl Gregory
- "Thug" - Gail Simone
- "Vacuum Lad" - Stephen Baxter
- "A Knight of Ghosts and Shadows" - Chris Roberson
- "Head Cases" - Peter David & Kathleen David
- "Downfall" - Joseph Mallozzi
- "By My Works You Shall Know Me" - Mark Chadbourn
- "Call Her Savage" - Marjorie M. Liu
- "Tonight we fly" - Ian McDonald
- "A to Z in the Ultimate Big Company Superhero Universe (Villains Too)" - Bill Willingham