Justine Larbalestier and Alaya Johnson’s books

What I wound up spending my Barnes and Noble coupon on last night was a hardback copy of Justine Larbalestier‘s Liar.

I’d seen a lot of traffic about this book on the publishing blogs a while back, pretty much because her publisher had initially opted to put a white face on the cover–and her protagonist, Micah, is not a white girl. I wanted to show my support of putting brown faces on covers if indeed the characters they are depicting are brown people, and so I felt it appropriate to buy a copy of the book.

Not to mention it sounds like a fascinating story in general, and an exercise in the ultimate in Unreliable Narrators. I will of course be reviewing it when I read it, and I encourage y’all to think about checking it out too, especially if you’re interested in YA reading.

This same issue is why I want also to check out Racing the Dark by Alaya Johnson. She guest-posted on Justine’s blog about how her father had tried to advise her to not put a brown person on her book’s cover, and how she’d found that Borders exiled her fantasy novel to the African-American section, where, sadly, most fantasy readers are not likely to bother to look for it. Racing the Dark sounds to me also like a refreshingly different fantasy novel, just because it’s not the traditional pseudo-European setting you’re likely to get, and that alone makes me want to check it out.

2 Replies to “Justine Larbalestier and Alaya Johnson’s books”

  1. I don’t get that mentality. People are people, right? It shouldn’t matter, and in all actuality, as a reader, I feel really cheated when the cover doesn’t match what’s in the book.

    1. Yeah, it shouldn’t matter, and yet it apparently does, enough that even to this day publishers seem to worry about this. Bah. Seems like all we can do is to make a point of buying the covers that accurately depict the people in them, no matter what kind of people they are!

      Now if we can only get them to stop doing those ‘sliced off head’ figures on urban fantasy covers… ;)

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