Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish, and is now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. It’s all about books, lists and sharing the love we have of both with our bookish friends. This week we’ve got a semi-freebie and in honour of Wyrd and Wonder starting next week, I’m focusing on books with trees on the cover.
Yes, absolutely, Wyrd and Wonder starts next week. It really is nearly May. That means There’s Always Room For One More will be wall to wall fantasy for the month, with a special (if not exclusive) focus on forest fantasies as this is our fifth Wyrd and Wonder and fifth anniversaries are celebrated with wood! So let’s kick that off early and enjoy some books with arboreal covers.
What’s this? Not just a book with a tree on the cover, but a book told from a tree’s point of view! Tales by Trees are an artistic adventure; original fairytales from a unique perspective, told across multiple media by author Iiro Küttner and illustrator Ville Tietäväinen.
How about ominous trees promising chill winds that blow nobody any good? Yes? Marvellous, have Catriona Ward’s haunting debut Rawblood. This literary ghost story is a Gothic feast, with multigenerational havoc and deft storytelling. Just don’t expect a light-hearted, uplifting read…
While we’re talking debuts, time for a nod to VE Schwab’s The Near Witch. Yes, the story is all about how Near is isolated on the moors, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t spooky woods nearby complete with a child-stealing wicked witch (and an excuse for some gorgeous cover art).
There are a lot of debuts featuring trees on my shelf as it turns out. This Is Our Undoing by Lorraine Wilson is both a tense, forest-set thriller with an abundance of atmosphere and one of the absolute best books I’ve read all year. Also, trees on the cover! And a gorgeous fox.
A different kind of tree on the cover: Brightfall by Jaime Lee Moyer features the hand-drawn clusters of a forest map. This is a magical reimagining of Sherwood Forest, where Marian practices the Craft, a guilt-ridden Robin abandoned her for the Church, something is hunting down the Merry Men and the Fae are as glamorous and dangerous as they should be.
This Aussie fantasy debut was a DNF for me, but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Thoraiya Dyer’s Crossroads of Canopy for this list. Not only is the cover art a dizzying view down from the treetops, the story is set across multiple levels of a giant rainforest.
I still haven’t got round to reading April Genevieve Tucholke’s Seven Endless Forests, but the cover has some lovely tree-based silhouette work (and there’s a forest in the name, we’re all good here). Arthurian and Norse myth inspire a coming of age tale as a girl sets out to rescue her kidnapped sister in this YA stand-alone.
I’ll end with Duncton Wood, a tale of epic moles – think (but not too hard) of a sexed-up Watership Down – standing in here for all the stories of animals I devoured in my childhood and teens. The Redwall and The Animals of Farthing Wood books definitely had trees on the covers; even the Silver Brumby books had the occasional eucalyptus. Good times.
Can you think of any fabulous trees on book covers?