Recently, I came across a cover so incredible, so impossibly fuchsia and so bedecked with WTFery, I had to order a copy for my very own. When it arrived, it was more than I'd hoped. There were pieces of the cover illustration that were so baffling, it was a mercy that I didn't notice them all at once when looking at the image online. I might not have survived the onslaught of that much Old Skool perfection.
So of course I scanned in the cover, and sent it to Elyse, Carrie, Amanda and RedHeadedGirl in pieces. Because I'm a horrible, horrible person. And now, I shall do the same to you, because, really, this cover should NOT come into focus all at once. There is earth-shaking power in this much wonderment.
Sarah: Here are two of the pieces of the cover I'm going to send you in sections.
First, what is this? Like, really, do you know what that is?
Sarah: Then, aside from the signature which proclaims this A Fine Fine Pino Cover, what's that?
RedHeadedGirl, I know you do SCA events, right? Anyone wear that? Or is it a BIG GIANT METAPHOR (BUT FOR WHAT I CANNOT TELL)?
RedHeadedGirl: Okay, well, that first one is either some stupid-ass baby's breath, or nuclear explosions. Was the cover produced during the Cold War?
And as for that….thing… it looks like a spaulder or a pauldron that's not….. I can't tell if it's actually sitting on the shoulder? or some incredibly fucked up rerebrace? And the spikes…. uh….. yeah, no one in the SCA has those, but we're not actually trying to kill people.
It is butt-ugly, whatever is going on there.
Sarah: Just you wait. THERE IS MORE. Any other guesses as to the magical pink creatures of fluffy doom?
Elyse: Jellyfish? Semen floating in the hot tub?
That other thing is like something you wear when you go into the ThunderDome.
Amanda: I second both of those things.
Regarding the second image, I literally thought it was someone going to town on a peach. Just embedding a bunch of knives it in to get at the pit. Feel free to make that as sexual as you want.
Carrie: I've got it.
He is a medieval warrior, brawny and boisterous. His war party ends up in Japan (after many complicated pages, as you can imagine. There are horses, there are boats, there are pirates and pillaging, not all at the same time). He is separated from his band of brothers and must seek an alliance within the royal court is he is ever to return home. There, beneath the cloud swept rosy sunset skies of the Japanese gardens, he falls in love with a Japanese Princess. Daughter of the Emperor and his European concubine (a slave, captured in war, such a tragic back story!), our heroine has flawless porcelain skin, “almond eyes” (it's old school with many unfortunate implications, so sad) and red hair that, when our brawny hero embraces her, wafts out over the lily pond like a sheet of flame, burning as brightly as their forbidden passion.
Sarah, I regret that I cannot figure out how to work a tree house into this narrative. Trees, sure. A house, in a tree, in which they live…not yet.
Sarah: You have met the initial challenge well! I GIVE YOU MORE!
Amanda: Wait…is this a ménage romance? Should we notify Elyse?!
RedHeadedGirl: IT'S FUSCHIA
I WANT THIS BOOK
Carrie: The story, attempt #2:
Young Sir Ravenhair was knighted just one week ago by Arthur, King of the Britons. Yet already he and his beloved one-armed inflatable woman have escaped kidnapping, pirates, and shipwreck. Cast upon the inhospitable shore of Cornwall, his shirt and her hairpins ripped away by the wind and waves, they struggle to avoid starvation, hypothermia, and punctures as they make their way back to Camelot.
The grim but honorable Lord of The Mustache rides ceaselessly through the lands of Briton, including but not limited to Cornwall, seeking the Holy Grail. But when he finds Sir Ravenhair and his inflatable love wandering lost in the woods, strange new feelings overcome this noble knight. Can these three medieval lovers survive the elements, bandits, and demonic bunny rabbits? Can they overcome the stern censure of a society that forbids a committed, loving, sexual relationship between two men and a female inflatable sex doll? And what role does the Lord of the Mustache's horse have to play?
(Should I be copyrighting these emails?)
Elyse: Ménage romance with a fuchsia warrior ghost! Or were you referring to the horse?
Mustache rides. Hee hee!
Carrie: I've laid it all out for you in the back cover blurb of my torrid imagination, Elyse! Horse, guys, one armed blow up doll – they are all involved! Try to keep up! And that's the title. The Medieval Mustache Rides at Midnight.
Sarah: RedHeadedGirl, this is the book I'm going to tape back together and send to you because OH MY GOD THE COVER.
Ready to find out what those pink and white puffy things? GET READY.
And please note: this is only half of the cover:
Sarah: I think they are fart blossoms.
Carrie: He stole her freedom and her farts! Would her eyeshadow be next?
RedHeadedGirl: What the hell kind of nuclear beans has she been eating?
Sarah: Are you ready for more?
Carrie: Wait, there's more?
Sarah: Oh yes, there's more. Just wait until you see the hero. Ready?
Amanda: Does she practice regular feminine hygiene care? Because his facial expression says otherwise.
Carrie: It's so sweet to finally see people with disabilities represented in romance. She's missing an arm, and he's clearly missing almost an entire torso.
Elyse: I'm pretty sure he's wearing jeans
Carrie: Historically accurate, medieval jeans, no doubt. They come from the same supply cache as her historically accurate shampoo and conditioner. Nothing can explain the eyeshadow.
Sarah: I think y'all should see the full cover now.
Sarah: I love the quote: He stole her freedom, her innocence, and her heart! What a man.
Elyse: Is he biting her wrist? Also what magenta paradise is this? It's like The Lisa Frank Dimension.
Amanda: That position is some Cirque du Soleil type business.
RedHeadedGirl: I need it.
Elyse: He is biting her. She's passed out on a cloud of her own farts, and he's biting her.
Sarah: I have found this year's Halloween costume. I'm going to be a fart jellyfish.