New look for The Black Madonna

With the audiobook underway for an early June release, Madonna has been given a make-over. The rest of the Roundheads & Cavaliers series will be given the same treatment in due course … but what you think of this one?

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Author: Stella Riley


20 thoughts on “New look for The Black Madonna”

  1. Instead of just one feminine image above the Cavaliers, (Kate? metaphor for the Madonna?), how about images of both Kate and Luciano? He has such a strong presence in the story, I’d like to see him on the cover:>) I am really looking forward to this one in audio!

    1. Trust me, Diane … if either I or my designer could find a half-way decent image of a man who might pass for Luciano, we’d use it. The only good 17th century male face I’ve ever seen is on the cover of The Marigold Chain. Glad you’re looking forward to the audio, though. Alex is hard at work as we speak.

      1. Wow~

        Thanks for getting back to me so quickly! I certainly understand that faces have a “look” from their period! (I’m an historical costume junkie–especially 17th-19th centuries–and a discrepancy in the period of the face vs. the dress in some illustrations can be jarring!) I’ll continue to picture Luciano in the appropriate period dress in my mind’s eye and be satisfied :>)



    2. I love everything about the new cover, colors, imagery, font, etc. except the tilt of her head strikes me as unusual. It’s almost like she’s trying to hide, but not in a serious way. It’s hard to read her expression so… maybe that’s a good thing, stirs interest. I think the combination of Stella Riley and narrator Alex W. paints it’s own beautiful imagery…no pictures required. 😋

      1. Thank you for your comments, Amy and I’m glad you like the over-all design concept for the new R&C covers. Getting the perfect face is impossible really because everyone will have a different idea of how characters look. But I liked the lady we chose for Madonna because at she looks natural and like a real person. If we go for portraits of the period (in order to get hair and clothes right) the ladies mostly look stiff, characterless and sometimes rather forbidding. The difficulty of finding The Face is why the Garland cover is still a work in progress. Your comments re Alex and myself are also much appreciated. Our collaboration is always a pleasure and Alex’s performance never less than astounding, even to me.

  2. I really like the new cover and cannot wait to see the rest of the series updated with the new covers. Alex is so good at narrating your books that they are automatic buys for me, so it is good to hear that he is working on this series.

    1. Thanks, Sandra. Although all the books in the series will be getting a face-lift, at this stage I can’t promise they will all also become audiobooks. A lot will depend on how Madonna performs. But I’m glad you enjoy Alex!

  3. I think the new cover is perfect. I definitely see the mischievous twinkle Kate’s eye. You’ve done a wonderful job. And I can’t wait for the audio.

    1. Thank you, Kathryn – means a lot, coming from you. Getting an image which indicates both sides of the book – historical fact & romance – is a real headache! But Alex saw (and really liked) the early draft of this one and that’s always encouraging. As for the audio, I can’t wait for it either but, with a book as long as this one, scheduling recording dates has been more than a little tricky! Hope you’re well and enjoying life.

  4. Love the new cover Stella. The Black Madonna is one of my favourite books and so I am looking forward to purchasing the audio.

    1. Thanks, Deborah – glad you like it. As for the audio, the sheer length of the book coupled with Alex’s other commitments has made scheduling tricky but I’m hoping to get the first part of it around the end of the month.

  5. Brilliant new cover. Can’t wait for the audio. I am a huge fan of all your books and Alex is the best narrator I have listened to. Your books and his narrations are magical. Please keep them coming and a HUGE thank you to you both for giving so much pleasure.

    1. Thank you, June. I’m glad you like the new cover and I totally agree about Alex. He’s the best – as well as being a pleasure to work with. He also likes the new cover, by the way – though the one for the audio has yet to be completely finalised.

  6. Hello Stella I think this is great can’t wait for the audio book to come out hope it is Alex doing the narration . Hope to see the others in audio also . All the best christine

  7. I think it is wonderful. It really conveys a feeling for the period. I look forward to seeing the others. I already have them though so will not benefit from the new covers.

    1. Yes – I think Amazon is at fault there and should readers the choice of whether or not to receive an update. But I’m glad you like the cover – I think it’s one of the best I’ve had done.

  8. Gorgeous cover – really like it. My only comment would be that the girl doesn’t look sassy enough for Kate. She looks like someone who would just say, “Oh, I’m sure you’re right” to Luciano.

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