Cover Reveal: Ambriehl Khalil – Coins In The Coffee Cup

Happy Funday Friday! What a FUN day it is today. What are your big plans for the weekend? Are you reading, writing, playing in the snow or making everyone in the snow get jealous as you lounge on a beach?

Today we’re revealing the cover for Australian debut author, Ambriehl Khalil and her LGBTQ YA novel, Coins In The Coffee Cup.

You can catch up with Ambriehl on twitter – @ambriehlkhalil

Since her title is YA, we wanted something youthful and had inspiration from a variety of YA novels that took the world by storm in the last ten years.

Here are the covers we didn’t choose:

CoinsCover2 Coins3o3 coins5 Coins3

There was one more, but it wasn’t pretty. We’re just going to act like it didn’t exist.

Don’t forget that launching soon is our Author Services Department at French Press Bookworks. If you like one of these covers, let us know and we’ll reserve it for you. Otherwise, you can shop our Covers That Weren’t for a banging cover on a budget!

Now, for the cover that will be….ready?

Coins In The Coffee Cup: Final Cover    Author Ambriehl Khalil Publisher French Press Bookworks -

This cover features artwork from AlexVector. At first we submitted a brighter yellow green, and while we didn’t love it, we loved how the two boys look like coins.

Ambriehl loved it as well and knew this was going to be her cover, we just needed some font changes and to get rid of that shocking green. Let’s admit it, it probably wouldn’t look good in print anyway.

So chat with us, which one is your favoriteand what do you think of the final selection? Leave your thoughts in the comments for a chance to win an ARC of Ambriehl’s book when it releases!


Cover Reveal: The Bomber by David O’Sullivan

Oh man, we are so excited for this!

Between Ana’s super fun and colorful cover for Down The Wormhole and now David’s BEAUTIFUL cover for The Bomber, we are LOVING what is coming out of our cover designers.

First, let’s get to the covers that weren’t. We didn’t have these for Ana because we had a super clear idea of what we wanted to do, and, on a lucky chance she loved them.

With David, we have this intense story that features PTSD, love, retribution, pain, guilt, and so many other emotions that  compounds into this intense, page turning, take you for a ride thriller. When you’re finished, you look back and think, “What the hell just happened and how did Joseph stay somewhat sane through this?”

I can’t talk about it too much or I’m going to just give the whole thing away and we have to be able to tease you and we have to make you wait.

So without ado, let’s show you the stunning covers that weren’t to be:

David had a very particular feel that he was going for and he was most attracted to an art deco, suggestive piece that reflected a journal with leather styled textures. We love that idea as well, but also wanted to give him some more literal translations.

In the end, our favorite was the leather style with the large text. The second favorite was the dark background with the smokey and flaming text, followed by the grimey guy holding the bomb.

In the end, our top favorite was ALMOST the contender but not quite right. A little more simple in the text, and some small changes in the font to where it struck the center of the image, and voila! Our cover for David O’Sullivan’s The Bomber:

The Bomber, Coming Soon from David O'Sullivan at www.pennamepublishing.comWe find it to be really striking and suggestive without being too much of a literal translation.

What do you think? Which one was your favorite?

Don’t forget to check up on what David is writing about on his blog – and catch him on twitter – @1davidosullivan.

We’re also releasing teasers on our Instagram account – @pennamepublishing and David is available for interviews, guest posts, and ARC signups. If you’re interested in reviewing David’s title for your Book Blog or professional review site, let us know by clicking here!

If you are already a member of our Early Readers’ Club, you don’t need to sign up again to obtain your ARC copy.

The Bomber officially releases on 6-24-2014, are you ready for retribution?

Cover Reveal: Leigh Raines – “We’re All Mad Here”


Yesterday we showed you the covers that weren’t.  And today, this is the cover that was!

Author Leigh Raines had two ideas, one being a modified Alice a la Disney gone bad.

We think after looking at the covers that weren’t, which one was an almost but not quite bad enough.  While we loved the cover that wasn’t #3, Leigh’s response was, “Jade is a hot mess, she would never look that put together!”

We laughed and had to agree!  We like the subtleness of the watercolor and the throwback styling of the label.

The label blocking out Alice/Jade’s eyes could also reflect on parts of Jade’s struggle and search for identity while she seemingly spirals out of control.

Don’t forget, blogger ARCs are still available for this title.  If you’d like to review “We’re All Mad Here”, drop us a comment with your blog name and if you prefer .mobi or .epub.

Happy Cover Reveal!


Funday Friday: Cover Reveal – The Before Now and After Then (again)

We heard you, we heard you!


You didn’t like the cover for The Before Now and After Then.  You got it, but you didn’t like it.

We know.  We got it, and well, we knew something had to be done to it.  I could try to explain that cover but….is it even possible?  Let’s try. Music is a central piece to the book, which has actually been the subject of debate.  However, Danny’s parents are aging punk-rockers, he grows up on certain music, he exchanges the infamous mix tape (To the boy with the cool hair…) with Rusty, and they have the adorable date in the record store.  It shows their youth, it symoblizes many important moments and the generation gap between Danny and his parents that doesn’t stand in their way.   Even Danny’s best friend, Cher, is named after a musician and has lyrics painted on her floor.

The green is the color of Rusty’s backpack, and some of you loved it, some of you hated it.

All in all, we’ve gone through around 30+ cover comps.  WHAT!?  30?! Yeah.  Why?  Because our authors mean the world to us and so does their satisfaction.  We want to give them what they want and sometimes, we don’t really know what we want.  There were a few covers we all liked, we slept on it, and all woke up in the morning not being satisfied and knowing more had to be done.

For fun, we want to show you some of the covers that didn’t make it next Monday and open up a discussion about cover design.  It IS important, it DOES matter, and boy oh boy did we get that first cover wrong!

In the mean time, feast your eyes on the new cover of The Before Now and After Then and let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Much love,

The Pen Name Publishing Crew

Cover Reveal: The Before Now and After Then


The Before Now and After Then Cover Reveal

Danny Goldstein has always lived in the shadow of his identical twin brother, Sam. But when a hurricane of events forces him into the spotlight, he starts to realize that the only thing he’s truly afraid of is himself. With the help of his costume changing friend Cher, a famous uncle with a mysterious past of his own, two aging punk rocker parents and Rusty, the boy who will become his something to live for, Danny begins to realize that the music of the heart is truly the soundtrack for living.”


We’ve been talking up Peter Monn’s The Before Now and After Then for the past few months as we gear up for his release on 7-29-2014.

Today, we bring you the much anticipated cover.  We elected to stick with current trends of simplistic design centered around a symbolic element from the story.  In this case, an unlabeled B-Side of a mix tape.  The background is a nice and vibrant green, evoking the school bag of a very important boy who becomes the narrator’s reason for living.

Every now and then a publisher comes across their dream manuscript.  We knew we would find many that we loved, but we never expected our third release to be such a powerful and moving title.  We truly believe that The Before Now and After Then has the power to transcend genre’s and bridge gaps that span between social stigmas and social acceptance.

This YA Novel deals with issues that begin during adolescence and often haunt people well into their adult years.  However, the loveable main character, Danny Goldstein, takes a turn and in exchange, turns the tables on life by conquering himself and those that challenge him along the way.

It is extremely hard to talk about this book without giving away the farm.  All we can say is to trust us and give this book a chance.  We have never felt so strongly about a piece and it’s potential to be a positive force for change.  We truly believe that Peter Monn has the ability to be one of the strongest voices of his generation and bring LGBT or Diverse literature across lines, past social stigma, and into the hearts of readers worldwide.

Yes, the lead character is gay.  Yes, the lead character falls in love.  But this is not merely a gay love story.  It is a beautiful tapestry that is carefully woven, will touch your soul, inspire you to be better to those you come in contact with, stand up for those who are being held down, and reach out a helping hand to those around you.  It just so happens to be a story about a boy who is struggling and along the way, finds his first love.  In a boy.

Our goal is to bring you bold stories by bold authors.  To push boundaries, to bring stories to life that will challenge, create, and inspire.

If there is any book that truly embodies this set of goals within its pages, it is The Before Now and After Then.

Reviews and ARC copies will be available on 7-1-2014 and we are taking review requests for this title.  Furthermore, Peter Monn is available for interviews and more information about the author can be found on his website at