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May 12

With a mustache like this and abs like these, who wouldn't show them off?Click for full image

Giles Comments: I love the Taltos novels, but these covers actually stopped me buying the books several times – they’re so cheesy. True, the artist gets some credit for getting the jhereg (the winged reptile) approximately right, but that doesn’t really offset the general awfulness.

Tache-tastic! Thanks to Giles!

Actually, that cover IS a classical work of art!I would touch it without protective gloves.I've seen worse. Far, far, worse.Interesting, but I would still read it in public.Middlng: Neither awful nor awfully goodWould not like to be seen reading that!Awful... just awful...That belongs in a gold-lame picture frame!Gah... my eyes are burning! Feels so good!Good Show Sir! (Average: 8.17 out of 10)
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33 Responses to “Taltos”

  1. SI Says:

    Sometimes I wake up in the mornings and I just wish… I could have a moustache like that!

    It does look like all of his body hair is growing just below his lip. He probably waxes his chest. And why not Sir… why not?

  2. SophaLoaf Says:

    Is it weird the the guy’s face freaks me out more than the winged animals with which he associates?

    @ SI: I wake up in the mornings and I just wish that I would NOT have a moustache like that! So does my boyfriend…so does my boyfriend.

  3. Sam Beaven Says:

    MARVEL at our cross-eyed, vacant warrior hero!

  4. Herm Says:

    Yes, those omnibus editions do have bad covers. The sad thing is that they get Taltos and Loiosh’s appearances RIGHT, but the books are just so ugly…

    The single paperbacks are much prettier, I think.

  5. Herm Says:

    …I should say, they’re right except that Taltos, who is Hungarian by extraction and very much human, should no doubt have a decent amount of hair on his chest – and, being an assassin, it’s very doubtful that he ever goes topless on a job.

    But hey, got to give the ladies of House Jhereg something to look at, eh?

  6. SI Says:

    @SophaLoaf: *Shutters* So much stumble rash… so much….

    @Herm: I don’t know, the topless assassin has a certain ring to it 😉

  7. DeadRobot Says:

    Someone stole the head of Stacey Keach and stuck it on the head of Lou Ferrigno!

  8. Brian B Says:

    Oh no, you’ve got it all wrong. This is clearly an attempt to inject some homoeroticism into mainstream fantasy fiction. I mean a man with such a lithe, sculpted body, that perfectly quaffed hair, that cute little pet so you know he’s a cuddler…Talos is the assassin of my heart!

  9. Bookmobiler Says:

    Since the tools of his trade mostly involve a variety weapons hidden in his clothing the picture must depict what he wears to the beach.

  10. James Lovegrove Says:

    On the left-hand cover he looks all mysterious like a character on the lid of a 1970s board game.

    “Can you face the challenge of DRAGONMIND?”

  11. CSA Says:

    Its totally Emilio Estevez. After getting out of detention he wanted to get his life on track, so he found a dragon and became a warrior assasin, would have been an interesting twist to the Breakfast Club movie.

  12. anonymous Says:

    I first read “pants of the dead”. Sounds cooler that way.

    I’m with you on the Emilio Estevez angle – talk about a weird stakeout.

  13. Tom Noir Says:

    Is this what the “Conan the Accountant” books were called in the UK?

  14. Kathleen Says:

    he looks like Kyle MacLachlan with a Hilter moustache

  15. Jose @ Daemon's Says:

    It’s always great to see a book cover with a character that is looking so intently at you that it’s almost comical. Plus it looks like Taltos rolls with a pet dragon like creature, which makes it easier to overlook the creepiness of his shirtlessness (are shirts illegal in his universe?)

    @CSA I see where you’re going with the Emilio Estevez, but he looks more like Jesse Ventura in Running Man

  16. Adam Roberts Says:

    Kyle MacLachlan with a Hilter moustache” Bingo! There’s the name for my new band!

  17. dude from another planet Says:

    Is it just me or are we talking about buffed up Hitler, here?…

    especially the left cover…

  18. Giles Says:

    Dude @ #17, the moustache is a lot wider; what you’re seeing is the shadow under his nose. The photo above isn’t all that great (it was taken with my phone). Incidentally, the author more or less agrees with you, I think. A quote from http://www.speakeasy.org/~mamandel/Cracks-and-Shards/books.html:

    “The book was called Taltos when I wrote it. It was still called Taltos when Ace published it. Pan [the UK publisher — MAM] bought rights for a British edition and, for reasons best known to themselves, re-titled it Taltos and the Paths of the Dead and put a Hitler Youth on the cover. If they’d asked me, I’d have suggested that this was a poor idea. “

  19. Si Says:

    @Giles & Dude – Good spot! And excellent quote.

    I now can’t tell what’s what. To me it kinda looks like he has a black or hairy upper lip.

  20. Mat T Says:

    Undercover cop at a leather bar?

  21. Kit1 Says:

    I have the series of Jhereg books, but I’ve never seen these before.

    It’s amazing and funny how different they are; mine just have drawn pictures of Jhereg’s on the front and a pastely looking Vlad.

  22. Stevie Says:

    The cover’s incredible. The dude looks like a Seventies Andy Warhol wet dream.

  23. anon Says:

    @SophaLoaf, it’s the rapey eyes.

  24. GSS ex-noob Says:

    I cannot look at these covers without hearing disco music. He’s like the missing member of the Village People. The dragon may be indicating the first letter of YMCA.

    it’s fun to be an a-saaas-i-i-n…

    macho, macho man…

  25. THX 1139 Says:

    So… Tom Selleck fan?

  26. fred Says:

    From Wikipedia

    Brust’s band, Cats Laughing, appears in issue No. 5 of a Marvel comic book called Excalibur. Brust is the only member of the band who is both seen onstage and named. Emma Bull also appears, but names everyone in the band except herself.[28] Brust was seen again in a one-shot special issue, Excalibur: Mojo Mayhem,[29] in which the mutant superhero Shadowcat attends a Cats Laughing concert in Edinburgh and mentions previously having seen the band at Windycon.

  27. Bibliomancer Says:

    The artist, Fred Gambino, would be happy to sell you the original of the Assassin painting for $700

    https://www.wow-art.com/product-page/fred-gambino-taltos-the-assassin

  28. Tat Wood Says:

    That’s Taltos on the left https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eh-GvaRa234

  29. THX 1139 Says:

    Tat wins the thread, and the internets for today.

  30. Bruce A Munro Says:

    Taltos always greases up before an assassination so bodyguards/cops can’t hold onto him.

  31. B. Chiclitz Says:

    @Tat W—Great link. Worst lip syncing I’ve ever seen, which only adds to the experience. I think the choreography might have been synced too.

  32. GSS ex-noob Says:

    Now that I return, I’m wondering if there will be any Taltos Jr’s, the way he’s storing that dagger in “Paths of the Dead”. That and the way he’s waving that sword near

    @Tat: Good Show Sir! And no, we don’t want to know how you found that clip.

    @B’mancer: Cheap at 1/1000th the price.

    I had a look at all of Fred’s stuff on that site and much of it’s also awful. We’ve had a few others here. He seems to be good at horses and turf, but insists on painting people. I think he got the model for the “Doomsday Warrior” books from the same disco.

    I espied some other GSS favorites there, like Romas Kukalis. Look around the site, it’s all prime GSS material. Would you believe they want $1200 for this double anatomical disaster?
    https://www.wow-art.com/product-page/victor-garduno-immortal-princess

    Wondering how many of these things actually sell.

  33. Ryan Says:

    @Tat: I am speechless with horror/breathless with laughter. No words can adequately comment on that video.

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