I adored Seraphina by Rachel Hartman (Random House, 2012) and bought it in hardcover before I had even returned the library's copy. The sequel, Shadow Scale, doesn't come out til March 2015; that's a long time, but then Megan Whalen Turner takes a long time between books, too, and they tend to be worth the wait. Hartman has written a short prequel, "The Audition," that was first made available online and is included in later hardcover editions of Seraphina (you can read it for free on Scribd, too). I'm not sure whether I would read recommend reading it first, though, and I wonder if Hartman meant for it to be part of the finished book (which already has a prologue) or, more likely, came up with it later.
In any case, it seems to me that more and more authors, particularly of fantasy novels, are expanding on the worlds they've created by publishing short stories or novellas in e-book form--I've seen prequels, companions, alternate perspectives, folktales--many of which are free. Sequels usually have to wait for a print edition, though.
Back to the kingdom of Goredd. I love the cover of the first edition of Seraphina--it's a wood engraving by Andrew Davidson, with a narrow maroon border; the title is embossed in gold. Later editions keep Davidson's engraving but add color to it: purple, green, and gold; and there's a new, sort of serpentine font for the title, which is displayed at an angle, in white. My focus group of one (me) likes it.
Aside: Any interest in a round-up of companion fantasy novellas?