Over the last week I've read two novels from a new-to-me publisher, Canada's ChiZine Publications, who specialise in "dark literary fiction", ie well-written horror and fantasy. Horror is not usually my bag, partly because I quickly tire of supernatural stories unless they're tremendously well-written--I need it to be scientifically rationalised horror, ie Alien or The Thing rather than Stephen King nonsense. Of the two, David Nicle's Eutopia: A Novel of Terrible Optimism, a tale of eugenics, forced sterilisation and parasitic lifeforms, was excellent, while Tony Burgess's People Live Still in Cashtown Corners, while well-written, was ultimately mystifying and unsatisfying (the second book by him I've found to be so, despite his excellent script for the blackly comic language-as-disease movie Pontypool).
But what of the covers? Well, all of ChiZine's cover design work is by Erik Mohr, sometimes working with Corey Beep. As you can see below, they've produced some wonderful designs. Indeed, it was Eutopia's cover that first grabbed me...
..that girl's eyes being both completely black and spot-varnished, so that tiny beads of light catch on them and follow you around as you move the book. Look at that expression: you just know she's hiding a set of fangs behind that pursed mouth.
Other ChiZine covers I particularly like: