Taili Song Roth
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April 30, 2018 at 02:00 PM EDT

At long last, Leigh Bardugo is ready to unveil the cover for her highly anticipated new fantasy, King of Scars.

Kicking off a new duology, Scars centers on Nikolai Lantsov, the mysterious and roguish prince from Bardugo’s original Grisha trilogy who quickly emerged as a fan favorite, and also features at least one character from her Six of Crows duology. (As to who, that remains under wraps.) In King of Scars, Nikolai journeys to the places in Ravka where the deepest magic survives, in order to vanquish the terrible legacy inside him, with the help of a young monk and a legendary Grisha Squaller.

Bardugo’s Grisha trilogy has sold more than one million copies and remains her best-known work. Exclusive to EW, she’s revealed the cover for her newest book, King of Scars, due in 2019. “The cover of King of Scars is more beautiful than anything I could have imagined and full of details pulled from the novel,” she says. “All of those magical touches may not mean much to readers now, but they will when we travel back to Ravka with Nikolai — and some other familiar faces from Shadow and Bone and Six of Crows. I’m not saying who just yet, but I hope readers are as excited as I am to take the journey.”

Bardugo also shared with EW the process of brainstorming and selecting a cover for this particular book. “When the Imprint design team brought me this idea, we were on a conference call with a truly terrible echo. [They] had sent me sketches and some examples of work from Billelis, the artist they had in mind for the cover,” she explains. “So I had some sense of the concept they were proposing, but I probably caught about half of what they said on that call. It didn’t really matter. After their genius work turning The Language of Thorns into an art object, I knew this team could execute anything and I trusted them completely. Turns out they didn’t just deliver, they went right ahead and blew my mind.”

Check out the King of Scars cover below, and pre-order the book ahead of its winter 2019 release here.

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