Monday, June 17, 2013

Can You Guess These Popular Fantasy Books from their Covers?

Here at the Inkpot we’re fans of the Guess the Phantom Book Covers game over at PWxyz. Today we thought we’d do our own variation, using MG and YA fantasy book covers from the past 50 years.

As you can see, the author names and titles have vanished. Are you clever enough to identify the books anyway?

Super bonus points to the cover aces who can name them all – and extra twinkly gold stars if you know the pub years, too!

Answers at the bottom!

Book 1

Book 2

Book 3

Book 4

Book 5

Book 6

Book 7

Book 8

Book 9

Book 10

Today's post was a tag-team effort between me, Lena Goldfinch, and the wonderful Amy Greenfield. We had so much fun putting it together, we're tossing around the idea of doing it again!

Confession, I'm to blame for stripping these beautiful books of their titles & author names, with sincere apologies to book designers everywhere, and Amy deserves the credit for scouting out a fabulous selection of book covers for me to choose from & for introducing our game.

Here's a little more about us and a look at our own book covers stripped of their titles & author names – just for fun.

AMY BUTLER GREENFIELD was on her way to a history PhD when she gave into temptation and became a novelist. She loves music, romantic adventure, alternate history, and twisty plots, which explains how she came to write her first YA novel, CHANTRESS(McElderry/S&S, May 2013).

LENA GOLDFINCH writes young adult fantasy with a healthy dose of "sigh-worthy" romance. In her creative heart, she loves travelling to all sorts of exciting places, past and present, a perk of making things up for a living. Her new release, SONGSTONE, comes out in July 2013.


  1. The Wolves of Willoughby Chase by Joan Aiken (1963)
  2. The Castle of Llyr by Lloyd Alexander (1966)
  3. A Wind in the Door by Madeleine L'Engle (1973; 1979 cover)
  4. The Dark Is Rising by Susan Cooper (1976)
  5. Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce (1983)
  6. Beauty by Robin McKinley (1978)
  7. The Folk Keeper by Franny Billingsley (1999)
  8. The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathan Stroud (2003)
  9. Princess Academy by Shannon Hale (2005)
  10. Plain Kate by Erin Bow (2010)


  1. I got four out of ten. Miserable. But what a fun idea!

  2. I got seven, and I can't wait to see what I missed!

  3. I got ONE out of ten, horrific (Plain Kate ftw though!). I did know #3 must be by that author but couldn't think which.

  4. Gold stars to everyone for effort! It's a surprisingly tricky game -- though it gave me a new appreciation for how gorgeous and striking the graphics are.

    Lena did an *amazing* job erasing the critical info! We're looking forward to doing another round with new covers later this year.

  5. I fully expected to ace this, and did pretty badly (no, I'm not giving specifics). Give us another crack at it! Too fun!

  6. i didn't know any! but fabulous post!!!
    thanks lena and amy!

  7. Ashamed to say i only got ONE! Great post though, thanks Amy & Lena!

  8. Glad you all enjoyed the challenge!

    Sally, I'm impressed that you got even one since these are US covers and not UK ones. Well done you!

    Claire, we will definitely be back with more! Look for us in September.

  9. I knew three... Beauty is one of my all time favs, and Plain Kate was great. And it goes w/out saying that Shannon Hale is amazing! This was a fun idea!

  10. I missed 3,7,8,9,10--which pretty much dates me, as I think the later ones are newer! A very fun idea.

  11. Today's post was a lot of fun! I only got a few!

    I really want to read SONGSTONE, now. Going to see if I can pre-order on my nook! <3

    And DOH, I meant to add CHANTRESS to today's post on the books I'm dying to read this summer. It's sitting right next to me. *slaps self*

  12. Thanks for trying our challenge, you guys! I'm impressed that you all got a few of them. It's quite a big time span, and it can be amazingly hard to recognize the images without the words.

    A Backwards Story - thank you so much for adding SONGSTONE and CHANTRESS to your reading list!!!

  13. Sheesh, I knew I recognized 2, 4, 5, 6, and 9, but I am apparently rather rubbish at this game! :) Awesome idea, though :)

    I knew the Madeleine L'Engle one was hers, but not which book.

    Haven't read or heard of the others.

    1. Hi, Janelle,

      Thanks! :) It was a lot of fun to put together. If you--or anyone--have any ideas for future fantasy titles please drop me a note! (I'm @Lena_Goldfinch on Twitter or email lena(at)

  14. Ack. I AM underread, apparently. I only recognized one, the first one, as from my wife's old edition of A Canticle for Leibovitz.

  15. I was a goose egg on this one...but I'd only read one of the books (and I didn't even know that cover!)

  16. Aaaaaagh!!! Not a one!! But then once I looked at the answers I figured I was totally out of date :)

    It's amazing how many cover designs ONE book may have (even 2nd or 3rd reprints); and if it switches publishers, then it's increased twofold :)

    Dammit: but great fun! Thank you!

  17. Interestingly I pegged Book 5 as Alanna: The First Adventure even though this is NOT the cover in Australia!

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