The prequel novella to The Sentinel Trilogy, Viper, will soon be reprinted with a new cover and a new title, Vanguard!
Yes! I’ve made a few minor updates, but it’s still the same story of how Jet Valinor and Sorvashti of the Ironhide clan met, six years before the beginning of Sentinel.
When I first conceptualized this prequel novella, it was mainly Jet’s story. I wanted to keep the theme of naming books in the series after the aether gift of the central character of each book. For example, Sentinel is named after Darien’s gift, Arbiter is named after Jet’s, and Sage is named after Teravyn’s.
But Jet already had his own gift used as a book title with Arbiter, so I decided to name the novella Viper after his title during the time frame of the book–the name of his military unit in the Valinorian Royal Guard.
Sorvashti had different plans. As I wrote, she blossomed as a character and stole the spotlight from Jet. By the time I’d finished, I knew Jet wasn’t the central character anymore, even though they both have the same amount of screen time–Sorvashti was the true hero of this particular story.
So, to keep in line with the naming convention of the rest of the series, and to give Sorvashti her proper due, I decided to change the title to the name of her gift: Vanguard.
… and I decided to plan ahead better in the future, and expect my characters to randomly do whatever they please without my permission. HA!
I loved the original Viper cover, and I still do. It took me months to design, and personally, it’s a more accurate representation of what Sorvashti looks like, in my mind’s eye.
But I decided to change it for two reasons:
1. From a genre perspective, I wanted to make sure potential readers could tell that the book is a fantasy. Because, at its core—despite all the fun romantic suspense and military shenanigans—the core story is a fantasy.
Sorvashti’s gift is a very important part of the storyline—and Jet’s, too—and the whole story takes place in a fantasy world. Readers of fantasy and young adult books are the people who, ultimately, will get the most enjoyment out of The Sentinel Trilogy series as a whole (at least, that’s my goal as an author: to provide awesome, super-enjoyable content for that audience).
So I wanted to better reflect that in the cover, to both more accurately represent the content of the story for prospective readers, and to attract the kind of readers that I believe (and hope) will get the most enjoyment out of the story.
2. From an artistic perspective, I wanted the cover to have the same layout as the other books in the series: a full view of the main character. This way, the series will look more cohesive side-by-side. Obviously not a big issue, but I’m OCD like that. 😛
I’m planning on updating the Kindle version by the end of this week—hopefully by this Saturday, August 19, 2017.
The new paperback version should be ready by September 15, 2017. I only have a few copies of the first edition with the original cover left in stock. If you’d like to grab one, click here to get an autographed copy, quick!
The book will still be in your Kindle library, no worries—you don’t have to buy it again!
It might not be automatically updated, however. Amazon doesn’t always update books because it might erase your own highlights or notes within the book, in case you made any. But if you want it to be updated to the new version, Amazon can make that happen.
If you have any trouble with this, drop me a line.
What do you think? Do you prefer the new artwork or the old? Do you agree with my reasons for changing it, or am I just as crazy as a rabid armadillo?