Mar 26

It's like that sitcom... the racist one....Click for full image

Black in Time? Seriously? Alright then. Well I think we should artistically avoid the whole race issue and simply have a huge group of people from every background floating mid space stretching backwards into the earth. And some faces of the main characters, with an hour glass imposed on them. Somehow though, I think it’s not going to take away from the title.

Thanks to the Legend Dave R!

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: 8.88 out of 10)

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33 Responses to “Black In Time”

  1. Albertosaurus Rex Says:

    WTF? That’s basically all I have to say…

  2. SI Says:

    My words exactly…. wow… just wow….

  3. Adam Roberts Says:

    You can tell he’s a white supremacist. Look how neatly his hair is combed.

  4. SI Says:

    Adam> So.. what do white supremacists with no hair do?

  5. CSA Says:

    Go to prison for violent crimes?

    This book has taught me one thing. Mankind has an array of beautiful cultures, but every single one wears stupid hats. Except obviously for the black militant, white supremacist and the time travel device (which seems to be another black guy)

    Where’s wally?

  6. James Lovegrove Says:

    I felt a raging need to look this one up online, and there’s this quite funny review of it at They’ve invented time travel, and who’s the first person they decide to let use it? A Classics professor wanting to do some research.

    You can just hear the wakka-wakka Isaac Hayes blaxploitation soundtrack going on in the background, can’t you?

    I feel my Disco Jim personality coming to the fore again. “Oh, yeahhhh… Hush yo’ mouth, mother-funster.”

  7. Adam Roberts Says:

    I thought Disco Jim was in a secure facility! How did he get loose? Quick … call security.

    That review is wonderful. I especially like ‘BURN, the Brothers United for Revolution Now’. As opposed to ‘BURT, the Brothers United for Revolution Tomorrow’ and ‘BURP, the Brothers United for Revolution Presently’.

  8. Adam Roberts Says:

    SI: “So.. what do white supremacists with no hair do?

    Hats, I guess. I mean, I assume white hats. Like chefs hats. Or something.

  9. Adam Roberts Says:

    CSA: ‘Where’s Wally?‘ I’d say he’s here. Looking mournfully, as you can see from that photo. And with good cause.

    And may I just say, in conclusion: hats.

  10. CSA Says:

    I can tell James is inspired to continue with his Age of Shaft novel.

    Maybe you could work it in with Adams hat obsession. Perhaps Shaft attempts to find humanities most perfect hat? I don’t want to spoil the story but i think it turns out to be this hat

  11. SI Says:

    Just have to say thanks to CSA who over lunch has imprinted “Huey Lewis and the News – Black in Time” permanently into my brain.

  12. James Lovegrove Says:

    @CSA: You will be appropriately credited when Age Of Shaft hits the shelves in 2011.

    “Who’s the cat that won’t cop out
    When Nubian gods are all about?”

  13. Nix Says:

    Those hats are astonishing. I had no idea some people wore small office blocks on their heads.

    (but for astonishing hats, you simply cannot beat Gilgamesh Wulfenbach’s, though I suspect he’d rather wear just about anything else.)

  14. Enough Says:

    What a bunch of narrow-minded, politically correct ass-hats.

    I don’t know what the story is about but it’s quite possible, suggested by the title and cover in fact, that it involves a nominally privileged white guy going back in to or being reincarnated only as a black guy – it *is* fantasy, yes? And what would he find? There are lot’s of interest possibilities and it could be a really good read.

    If you are all done knee-jerking (or having Strangelovian arm spasms to the Fuerher of political correctness), maybe you can get out of your narcissistic reveries for a moment.

  15. John G Says:

    Oh man, I bought this book in Oakland on the strength of the cover and title. It doesn’t live up to the blaxploitation potential. What’s amazing is that the author went on to become a successful historical novelist.

  16. Vario Says:

    Hey there…My name is Leroy Earth. I hear people in space. Let me tell you the story of the black sun and the white moon…do we have time? Let me look it up on the cosmic clockulating hour glass. awww w yeaaaah

  17. Stewiefet Says:

    Can anyone translate what “Enough” just said? I recognise most of the words but I’m not sure it’s English.

  18. nime Says:

    “You can tell he’s a white supremacist. Look how neatly his hair is combed.”


  19. James Lovegrove Says:

    Re Enough: I’ve never been accused of political correctness before. Or been called an ass-hat. It’s an honour.

    What is an ass-hat anyway Is anybody in the picture wearing an ass-hat?

  20. Ron Obvious Says:

    The white supremacist and the black militant must have felt awkward in the hot tub together, especially when time travel was involved.

  21. Adam Roberts Says:

    Enough: personally speaking, I’d rather be found guilty of hat-speech than hate-speech.

    Hah! Did you see what I did, there?

  22. Rob Says:

    The plot twist is that the whole story takes place inside the “It’s a Small World” ride at Disney world.

  23. CSA Says:

    Its a horror story then?
    *must repress memories of small world at Disney*
    … too late… great, now my mind is singing the small, small world song… atleast the cover makes sense now.

  24. Lex Says:

    Not the greatest cover, but you have unearthed an unattributed cover painting by Steele Savage, who is actually pretty amazing. See for example his cover painting for Have Spacesuit Will Travel. Note: the floating heads are characteristic of Savage’s SF covers!

  25. will3 Says:

    WTF? That

  26. Stevie T Says:

    @Nix back at No. 13:

    You hardly found a good pic of Gil’s hat. Try this one:

    Ah, yes. Girl Genius and GSS. The two best time wasters…er, I mean, intellectual diversions… on the internet.

  27. Dead Stuff With Big Teeth Says:

    Hm. I counted, and there are three people on the cover who might be women. I hope there isn’t such gender imbalance in the book itself…

  28. Alessandra Kelley Says:

    Does the art remind anyone else of Little Golden Books, or those encyclopedic educational children’s books of the 1950s?

    I can almost see this as Great Men in the River of History from the Faber Storybook.

    Dead Stuff, those are all (so far as my knowledge of stylized 1960s children’s illustration tells me) men. Woohoo.

  29. GSS noob Says:

    “Hats! Can you dig it?”

    You can tell that guy’s a white supremacist by his combover. *gestures meaningfully to current events*

    I see one person who might be a woman — way in the back, about fourth — might be a nun or the Virgin Mary. But, could just be a dude in robes. All the rest are men.

    Any plan where you lose your hat iz bad plan. Indiana Jones proves this.

  30. fred Says:

    The three of them just should have walked into a bar and become a Twilight Zone ep.

  31. Bruce A Munro Says:

    Ah, yes. The eternal trinity: the racist white man, the angry black man, and the _good_ black man/two-fisted academic*

    * – a term I take from the Tor review below. John Jakes would go on to become a respected writer of actual history novels, but at the time he was still in full pulp SF mode.

    “If you happen to own John Jakes: A Critical Companion, you might be surprised to find that it contains zero mentions of Black in Time. It says Jakes “has made American history come to life” yet it doesn’t mention his one book in which Harriet Beecher Stowe attacks a time-traveling racist with a red-hot poker. It calls him the “godfather of the historical novel” but doesn’t include a single word about his book in which the leader of white jihad beats Benjamin Franklin nearly to death at a Quaker meeting. He’s named “the people’s author,” but utter silence on his book that features the immortal line, “Thee are not a nice person!”

  32. Tat Wood Says:

    @Bruce A Munro: that’s appalling – everyone knows that it should be “Thou art not a nice person”.

  33. GSS ex-noob Says:

    @Tat: Anyone who’d write this cares not a whit about the proper form of semi-obsolete English second-person pronouns and verb forms.

    Thou art, of course, correct.

    I never could keep them 100% straight myself till I got the late great Kage Baker’s handy booklet on How to Speak Elizabethan.

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