New cover art for The Manduca Case

The brand new cover for The Manduca Case is a truly amazing work of art by Spanish artist and friend José Domingo.

The cover marks a new life for the Virtual Investigator as for the first time in my writing career I venture into the world of eBook publishing. Actually, there are a lot of firsts for me here. First eBook, first English novel to see the light of day, first publication on Amazon, first collaboration with a foreign artist…

José was born in Galicia, Spain. He has authored and illustrated several comic books and won many important awards. Nowadays he works in Malta, where he continues to create amazing illustrations. His latest publication is No me hables de política, a collaborative work for children that explain a bit how politics work.

The collaboration with José has been truly excellent. Being so close to the action, seeing his sketches as he did the character studies and experimented with different perspective was truly fascinating.

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I made the decision to ask him to create a new cover for various reasons. There was nothing wrong with Lisa Falzon’s artwork for the Maltese edition of the book which was a massive hit in Malta–in fact I loved it and still do. But I wanted to be totally free to experiment and not tied down with royalties. So I decided to commission the work to José. I also wanted to give the book a more international feel, since my intention is to continue experimenting . . . the next project will be a Spanish version of The Manduca Case.

So who better than my award-winning friend José Domingo to come up with the cover that will launch Irvin Vella into a multi-lingo future?


The Manduca Case is a translation of ‘Il-Każ Manduca’, a detective novel set in Malta. It was awarded the National Book Award in 2015. I translated it into English and the novel is currently available in eBook format from the Amazon Kindle stores.

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