Let's start with this year's face chosen to illustrate the AAW banner.
A few weeks ago, a book cover caught my eye : it showed an auburn-haired boy with a fiery look, in a wild landscape of snow and dead trees. Evocative of Armand's youth in Kiev, to my very Armand-oriented eyes.
I got a little suspicious at how much of a coincidence it was when I looked at the book title : "Chronicles of the Immortals"; and at the back cover summary, that spoke of a main character called Andrej Delany, whose family and village was either slaughtered or enslaved by the Inquisition and three mysterious Golden Knights, and who travelled across his native Transylvania to find them.
Can you see it coming?
Yes, it has vampires in it.
And his son is called Marius.
It's getting a little too much to be a mere coincidence, is it?
The character in the illustration is a young boy, Frederic, sole survivor of the slaughtered village, who Andrej takes under his wing while he hunts down the Inquisition to find his family.
It's definitely Germany Year in fandoms, because this book is the first of a 10-novels series by a German fantasy writer, Wolfgang Hohlbein, who is said to be the German Robbin Hobbes.
(I'm not sure it's a compliment, though it probably was in the mind of the one who wrote it).
The series is called "Die Chronik der Unsterblichen" there ("Chronicles of the Immortals" is a literal translation).
Wolfgang Hohlbein's official site
The French edition illustration, that I used for the banner, was done by Amandine Labarre.
Full version (click for full size) :
The first novel was adapted in comics / "bande dessinée" in Germany, too, by Benjamin Von Eckartsberg and Thomas Von Kummant.
But not so much Armandian material in it.
Only the first of the two planned issues has been released so far - in German and also in French.
Benjamin Von Eckartsberg's official site
Thomas Von Kummant's official site
Thomas Von Kummant's official blog
Amandine Labarre's official site