Jan 22

But Thraxas, you promised next time we fought I could wear the bikini!!Click for full image

Doctor: It’s alright Madame, your Son simply has a case of the TeenFlu.
Concerned Mother:
Thank you doctor, is there anything I can do for him?
Doctor: Well, I prescribe some awesome red and yellow training warrior monks, a large dude in a kimono and a busty women in a gold bikini grasping her short sword. Here, take this book.
Concerned Mother: Uh… you’re a medical doctor right?
Doctor: My doctorate came in a toblerone box.
Concerned Mother:
Ohhhhhhh K, well I’ll be going.

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: 8.79 out of 10)

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31 Responses to “Thraxas and the Warrior Monks”

  1. SI Says:

    There is just so many good things about this cover. I hardly know where to start.

    It must be depressing to have spent all that time being trained in monk-kung fu only to be killed by a girl in a gold bikini.

  2. CSA Says:

    Well atleast you’ll see her coming. Its not like she blends in.

    Now if she was trying to infiltrate an Ann Summers Kung-fu temple then the bikini would be acceptable.

  3. SI Says:

    Obviously she’s living life on the edge, she’s even oped out of taking shoulder armour!

  4. James Lovegrove Says:

    I say full marks to Thraxas, if that is he with the red dressing gown and sculpted, Jeremy-Beadle-style beard. Tubby middle-aged bloke but look at the totty he’s got with him! He must be very rich…

  5. little mi Says:

    Maybe she’s lost and the guy in the bathrobe is pointing her in the right direction.

    Lady: ‘I’m terribly sorry I’m looking for the Ann Summers Kung-fu temple
    Man: ‘This is the Red and Yellow Warrior Monks madam, the Anne Summers Warrior Monks and two temples down on the right’
    Lady: ‘Why thank you, nice hair by the way…’

  6. Simon Says:

    Publishers tactics for making dull pictures appear more interesting, number 1:

    The 45 degree tilt.

  7. James Lovegrove Says:

    Publishers’ tactics for making accident at the printers appear deliberate, number 1:

    “Oh yeah, we meant for this to appear at a 45-degree angle. Looks so much more interesting that way.”

  8. Simon Says:

    *Looks back at James’ Gollancz books* ‘ We didn’t try that one on him did we?’

  9. CSA Says:

    Drowned World and stars are Gollancz. Not bad covers, but have the 45-degree tilt.

    I so wanted to find one of James’ with a tilt, but alas, none to be found. good job.

  10. Simon Says:


    Ahhh but neither of these (and this is an important technical distinction which I wouldn’t begin to expect you to understand) NEITHER of these are at a 45 degree tilt. They’re both 30 degree tilts which is the industry standard for making genius works of art appear less daunting (indeed, less blindingly magnificent) to the unsuspecting public. It’s something to do with the way that rays of unutterable beauty strike the light receptor cones in the human eye.

    And before anyone takes the protractor to Thraxas I’m fully aware that this is, in fact, a 40 degree tilt. Basically anything over 38 will do it when it comes to making dullness palatable.

  11. CSA Says:

    wow… i never knew so much thought went into the angle the art is tilted at.

    I also just noticed that Thraxas is a clockwise tilt, while the superior Gollancz covers are anti-clockwise. Some critics may have called that an insane move on Gollancz’s part, but hell yeah, it worked. Can you imagine the horror if they had been clockwise?!

  12. Simon Says:

    Clockwise tilts/anti-clockwise tilts; well that WAS what Dan Brown’s next book was going to be about. Nice one CSA – he’ll have to think up something else now.

  13. Adam Roberts Says:

    You’re all wrong. The image is not tilted. That kungfu/ninja temple is built on a hillside at an angle. The better to train the kungfu/ninjas.

  14. Albertosaurus Rex Says:

    I’ve never read the Thraxas books, but from what I understand, they are supposed to be humorous. Aren’t humorous books exempt from this blog? (Still a pretty bad cover though.)

  15. CSA Says:

    @Rex I’ve not read them either, but i don’t think this book is a satire in the same sense that a Terry Pratchett book is. I think the stories aren’t specifically comedy or spoof, more that the main character/narrator of the story has a sense of humour. I could be being pedantic arguing the difference between a parody and general humour….

    It could be argued either way. Ironically even if it is a complete spoof novel, at a rating at 7.5 stars it’s nowhere near as bad as some of the “proper” fantasy covers we’ve discussed!

    @Adam they must have very skilled gardeners to get the trees to grow at an angle too. I definately prefer the developing theory that publishers are attempting to raise the antichrist by tilting their covers in 40 degree clockwise directions…. Strangely, I think Dan Brown, with his massive popularity could still sell that pitch to his publishers, and still get a number 1 seller

  16. Adam Roberts Says:

    …they must be very skilled gardeners to get the trees to grow at an angle too…

    Oh, they are.

  17. SI Says:

    Maybe that’s part of their ninja training… ‘Once your tree is grown at a 45 degree angle, you are ready to leave.’

    @Rex – Yea, that is a good point. I never checked out where this one lay. But I think CSA is right in the sense that it is a humourous book. I’ll put a warning may be humour label on it later.

  18. Karl Says:

    I haven’t seen a genre trainwreck this awesome since MST 3K riffed on the movie “Laserblast.” Whose ready for some football?

  19. Mark V Thomas Says:

    Re: Karl’s post
    Why, is Stephen Chow the referee…? (Sorry, but I could not resist sneaking a “Shaolin Soccer” reference in somewhere…)
    As for the cover itself, does SPECTRE know that monks are now using their Training Academy, & if so, when is Robert Shaw’s character, armed with a combination wristwatch/garrotte, going to turn up …?
    (The cover, I suspect, is based on a photo/still of the building used as the SPECTRE training academy in From Russia With Love, hence my remark about “Red Grant” turning up somewhere…).

  20. dude from another planet Says:

    I now have formed an opinion that cover story should be judged in realation to the book content.

    All of your comments about the absurdness of the situation are correct, but guess what? So is the book! And it reflects the book very well.
    Thraxas is an easy-read-trash for teenagers, its like junk food, something fun that you do when you dont want anything complicated and you just want to shut off your brain after a hard days work. Instead of drinking vodka. Or watching “Two and a Half Men” (Brrrrr, it probably kills more brain cells than the alcohol).

    And the cover reflects the content very well (Exept that Thraxas supposed to be fat and unatractive and Makri suppose to have metal not gold bikini, also she supposed to look elvishly).

  21. Dead Stuff With Big Teeth Says:

    I fancy that the THRAXAS is garish green because it’s topiary, and the winner of the kung fu fight is exempt from having to go up to the sky and trim it.

    @d-fap: much to my surprise, ‘elvishly’ is to be found in the Wiktionary. And here I’ve been thinking all along you made it up, my humblest apologies. Pray tell, when she looks ‘elvishly’, is that staring at things from an elf’s social and political perspective, or did she rip an elf’s eyes from out of their sockets and use them for her own?

  22. A.R.Yngve Says:

    I just couldn’t put my finger on what’s this cover is “really about” — but then it hit me.

    Thraxas’ stomach. Come on. Admit it. There’s the target demographic. I don’t think I need to elaborate on the subject. (For fear of my physical safety…)

  23. Rev Says:

    Looks like the Hot Chick with Sword from the end of Level 4 has shacked up with the Fat Boss from Level 2. They must have met in the staff room.

  24. anon Says:

    Editor: “Look, you can’t call the hero ‘Throw Axes’, even if he might throw axes.
    Author: “How about if I call him ‘Thraxas’?
    Editor: “Seriously?

    @Rev: You said ‘staff room’.

  25. Ray P Says:

    Enter the Dragon really needed a warrior-babe and Orson Welles in a red bathrobe.

  26. A.R.Yngve Says:


  27. anon Says:

    They meditate!

  28. DaveM Says:

    Love how the monks are all practising for a live action version of “Way of the exploding fist” 🙂

  29. GSS noob Says:

    Of course the book’s for teenagers. Adults can’t possibly read a whole book with their head tilted at that angle.

  30. Ashley Lambert-Maberly Says:

    The Thraxas books are really quite charming, not too be taken too seriously, and explain why the woman is dressed that way (she’s a part-time barmaid–and gets better tips). Thraxas himself is a tubby alcoholic who’s apparently a private investigator but allergic to hard work. It’s a fun series.

  31. fred Says:

    To answer your question, of course Warren Clarke would make a great Shang Chi.

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