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‘Drake’ Cover Reveal

Fantasy-Faction are excited to bring to you the exclusive cover reveal of Peter McLean’s Drake. Those of you who keep up with the Angry Robot Open Door Submissions Period will know that Peter was one of those who was successful from the last round, so it’s pretty cool that around the time of NaNoWriMo and in the run up to their next open door sequence that we are able to show you what ‘could be’ should your manuscript get chosen! 🙂

With that in mind, I’ve stolen a rather awesome piece of advice/reflection from Peter’s blog that I think is timely and inspiring for you writers out there too:

If someone had told me last year that I would never, ever on God’s green Earth get published, I’d still be writing novels. Because I have to. If it’s what you do, you have to do it. And with every book you finish (and the key here I think is finish, not abandon) you learn something. About writing, about perseverance, about yourself. You keep going. You get better. You learn your trade, you learn your industry, you network and you make contacts and you learn from them and you go write some more and some more and eventually it’s good enough and you get somewhere.


Back to Drake and to give you some context on the novel: it is the first title in the Burned Man series and centres on a demon-summoning hit-man and a murderous, chain-smoking angel who must battle Furies and the Devil himself in a search for redemption. It’s set in modern-day London and is, essentially, a tale of spell casting and shot guns, where Guy Ritchie meets Jim Butcher.

So, about that cover I promised then… check it out:


Pretty cool, isn’t it? The cover is by Raid 71 and seems to have a staggering array of influences; it reminds me a bit of the The Shambling Guide to NYC cover in many ways, but more badass and abstract… Dresden, the old-school 1930s/1940s PI covers (Philip Marlowe, etc) and even comic book covers such as Sin City and Hellboy – I could go on naming styles this cover seems to draw upon, but the most important thing is that it’s sure to catch an eye or too. Cause it’s awesome.

So that’s the front cover taken care of, what’s on the back? Well, the official Drake synopsis that will build upon the contextual stuff I gave you earlier:

Hitman Don Drake owes a gambling debt to a demon. Forced to carry out one more assassination to clear his debt, Don unwittingly kills an innocent child and brings the Furies of Greek myth down upon himself.

Rescued by an almost-fallen angel called Trixie, Don and his magical accomplice The Burned Man, an imprisoned archdemon, are forced to deal with Lucifer himself whilst battling a powerful evil magician.

Now Don must foil Lucifer’s plan to complete Trixie’s fall and save her soul whilst preventing the Burned Man from breaking free from captivity and wreaking havoc on the entire world.

And, because I’ve not actually got my hands on Drake yet (the book, not the character, ’cause I know he’s fictional), here’s one author’s opinion of how it reads:

“McLean has crafted a refreshing urban fantasy, with a wonderfully flawed, foul-mouthed protagonist who, despite some dubious life choices, is not quite beyond redemption. Imagine Mal Reynolds had dabbled in the occult and this would have been the result. Drake features equally complex female characters, ensuring the Burned Man is one series I shall be certain to follow.”

– Susan Murray, author of The Waterborne Blade and Waterborne Exile

After all the awesomeness, I feel bad finishing this post on a negative note, but I’ve no choice: you’ll have to wait until January 2016 to get your hands on a copy and see how McLean’s Drake compares to Dresden and the other highly readable Gritty Urban Fantasy series out there  >.< I know… painful, right?

Until then, follow Peter on Twitter or Facebook, and check out his website, Talonwraith. Oh, and check back with Fantasy-Faction regularly too, because we will be doing an interview with the author about his book and Open Door Submission journey shortly!



  1. […] can check out the full cover reveal article over at Fantasy Faction, but right now I’m just floored by how cool this is. I love the cover itself of course, but […]

  2. Avatar Ken Hughes says:

    Neon and London landmarks (but wait, what kind of wings are those at the pillar’s top? 🙂 ), and the weary hero slumped on the side… it’s a checklist of coolness alright. (And if the *back* cover doesn’t say “Guy Ritchie meets Jim Butcher,” it should.)

    I’m a little surprised that Drake’s outline is quite as overshadowed as it is, when it’s combined with the sign being so bright and busy a central image. It reminds me more of ensemble series that want to imply they have no main character, or comic covers that almost welcome a chance to claim that this time in the series their familiar hero has been overpowered by mood. For an actual book cover with a clear protagonist, an imbalance like that seems like refusing to make the basics clear… but maybe that rebellious streak is part of its charm.

  3. […] to find success as the result of this is Peter McLean. After we were given the opportunity to reveal Peter’s cover a few weeks ago, we got back in touch with Angry Robot and asked if they can set us up an […]

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