Sail the Skies with Tommy Arnold’s Cover for The Guns Above

We’re excited to show off the cover for The Guns Above, the debut novel from Robyn Bennis. Available May 2017 from Tor Books, The Guns Above features high-flying airship adventures, with a soaring steampunk cover from artist Tommy Arnold!

From the editor, Diana Pho:

Steampunk has been my passion for a long time, but very few steampunk books I’ve read describe the nit ‘n’ grit of airship technology while also displaying that knowledge using adrenaline-pounding battle sequences the way Robyn Bennis’s The Guns Above does. Plus, Josette, Lord Bernat, and the rest of the crew of the Mistral are so funny and sharply-drawn, that they stayed with me long after I put the manuscript down. The cover really distills all of the excitement I have for this book!

From the author, Robyn Bennis:

Why do I love this cover so much? Let me direct your attention first to the badass lady jumping over a gondola rail with pistol in hand. That’s Josette, Garnia’s newest airship captain. She is so perfectly depicted that you can just feel the anachronism bleeding through, as a woman who’s half Jack Aubrey and half Bessie Coleman leaps out of an airship and onto a Napoleonic-era battlefield. Garnia being a rather “traditional” society, she is not supposed to be doing that. But let’s be honest, when a woman sees a job that needs doing, her first instinct is always to roll up her sleeves and do it herself. And sometimes that means leaping from your airship with pistol in hand. Back me up here, ladies.

Behind her, you’ll find Bernat. Bernat is a dandy, a womanizer, a wit, and sometimes a spy. My love for him is endless. Just look at that beautiful fancy-pants. Okay, so you can’t actually see his pants under the sherwani, but you know they’re there, and you know they’re fancy. I can’t help adoring him, even though he’s aboard Josette’s airship on a mission to destroy her…

Garnia is in for one hell of a shake-up—a shake-up that is so perfectly captured by the energy, the attitude, the smoke, and the chaos of this gorgeous cover.


Art by Tommy Arnold


The Guns Above publishes May 2, 2017. From the catalog copy:

The nation of Garnia has been at war for as long as Auxiliary Lieutenant Josette Dupris can remember – this time against neighboring Vinzhalia. Garnia’s Air Signal Corp stands out as the favored martial child of the King. But though it’s co-ed, women on-board are only allowed “auxiliary” crew positions and are banned from combat. In extenuating circumstances, Josette saves her airship in the heat of battle. She is rewarded with the Mistral, becoming Garnia’s first female captain.

She wants the job – just not the political flak attached. On top of patrolling the front lines, she must also contend with a crew who doubts her expertise, a new airship that is an untested deathtrap, and the foppish aristocrat Lord Bernat – a gambler and shameless flirt with the military know-how of a thimble.  He’s also been assigned to her ship to catalog her every moment of weakness and indecision. When the Vins make an unprecedented military move that could turn the tide of the war, can Josette deal with Bernat, rally her crew, and survive long enough to prove herself to the top brass?


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