Scott Westerfeld has a new graphic novel, and EW has an exclusive first look at its cover.

Spill Zone, by Westerfeld and artist Alex Puvilland (Prince of Persia, Templar), will be published by First Second in May 2017, but in the meantime is being serialized online at

Westerfeld, the YA author best known for his massively popular Uglies series and his Locus Award-winning Leviathan trilogy, is introducing a new heroine in Addison, a motorcycle-riding photographer who lost her parents in a mysterious disaster, known as the Spill, which destroyed her small city of Poughkeepsie and altered reality within its borders.

Addison provides for her younger sister, Lexa, by sneaking into the off-limits Spill Zone at night, photographing the twisted things she sees, and selling the pictures to wealthy art collectors.

Westerfeld says the story was partly inspired by a Ukrainian photojournalist who chronicled her illicit motorcycle journeys through the otherworldly Chernobyl Exclusion Zone; though the veracity of her blog was called into question, Westerfeld was struck by the poetry of her tale: “a woman on a motorcycle, a camera, an empty and dangerous world.”

“I’ve always been a sucker for tales about exploring broken, abandoned terrain,” he wrote on the book’s website. “There’s nothing quite like the silent loneliness of a place that has been abandoned, restricted, and left to ruin. In these spaces, the usual rules don’t apply. It feels as if the laws of physics don’t either. So what if they really were a slice of another world?”

What if? Find out in the first installment of Spill Zone, here, and check out the book’s cover, below.