Friday Face-Off: A Murder Scene
Welcome to The Friday Face-Off, a weekly meme created by Books by Proxy! Each Friday, we will pit cover against cover while also taking the opportunity to showcase gorgeous artwork and feature some of our favorite book covers. If you want to join the fun, simply choose a book each Friday that fits that week’s predetermined theme, post and compare two or more different covers available for that book, then name your favorite. A list of future weeks’ themes are available at Lynn’s Book Blog.
This week’s theme is:
“Murder most foul, as in the best it is.”
~ a cover featuring A MURDER SCENE
The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters
My pick today is a book I read back around the time I first started blogging, but I still remember the premise of it very well, for you see, The Last Policeman would likely be considered a pretty standard a police procedural if not for a huge twist: while everything is taking place, a killer asteroid is hurtling towards Earth, set to end all life on the planet when it impacts in about six months. As you can imagine, everyone is freaking the hell out, though each person appears to have their own way of dealing with the impending apocalypse. Most have ditched their jobs to tackle bucket lists or to reconnect with their friends and loved ones. Others have found religion. Sadly, some chose suicide.
But then there are those like Hank Palace, a rookie detective who is still out there trying to be the best damn policeman he can be. Currently, he’s investigating the death of a man found hanged in the bathroom of a fast-food chain restaurant, though not surprisingly, most of his colleagues on the force have already dismissed the case as an asteroid-related suicide. However, Hank is not so sure. There are signs of foul play and something about this one feels suspiciously like murder. But with the end of the world set to occur in mere months, our protagonist might be the only cop left in the city who cares enough to uncover the truth.
Time to take a look at the covers! There are a wide range of options this week:
From left to right:
Quirk Paperback (2012) – Quirk eBook (2012) – Czech Edition (2015)
Russian Edition (2015) – Portuguese Edition (2015)
Polish Edition (2017) – Hungarian Edition (2015) – Romanian Edition (2015)
Spanish Edition (2017 – Japanese Edition (2016)
German Edition (2013) – French Edition (2015) – Thai Edition (2016)
I had several that I liked this week, and I tried to show bigger images of the ones that really caught my eye. In the end though, I’m going with the Spanish (2017) edition as my favorite. It’s not the only cover to go the “silhouette” route, capturing an image of the killer asteroid inside the outline (of whom I assume is Hank) as it streaks across the sky. However, I felt this version pulled it off best, because unlike the other covers that attempted the same theme, this one actually shows a bit of the character’s facial features. There’s a hint of melancholy and hopelessness in his expression, but at the same time his upward gaze shows determination, which perfectly captures the mood of the story.
But what do you think? Which one is your favorite?