Brown River Queen cover art

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Revealed at Last: The Face of Markhat

Back in the primordial mists of pre-history (June of 2008), a finder named Markhat made his debut on Amazon with the release of Dead Man's Rain.

I wasn't sure what readers would make of Markhat. I took the heart and soul of a 1940s private eye and plopped him down in Rannit, a bustling city of humans and Ogres by day and a hunting ground for thirsty halfdead by night. Magic works in Markhat's world. Banshees walk the empty streets.The dead don't always rest. As Markhat's friend Mama Hog observes, sometimes even good and dead isn't good enough.

The response to the first Markhat book was good, so along came two more Markhat adventures.

The Cadaver Client finds Markhat working for a guilt-ridden shade. As Markhat soon learns, the dead can be just as treacherous as the living.

In The Mister Trophy, Markhat is hired by a trio of Trolls. The Trolls want the head of their dead cousin back -- but a mad vampire keeps the stuffed Troll head as a trophy, and he'd rather die than part with his possessions.

All three of these titles were then combined in the print anthology The Markhat Files, shown below.

If you've kept an eye on the book covers, you noticed a running theme. We see Markhat, but his fedora always covers his eyes.

This theme continues for the next four books.

Still no face! We see Darla on the cover of Brown River Queen, and we almost see Markhat, but the clever devil maintains his air of mystery by stepping in front of a light source at the last moment, hiding his face once again in shadow.

A new Markhat book will be released in June of this year. Entitled The Five Faces, the latest Markhat book cover is done, and I've seen it, and it is gorgeous. Artist KaNaXa, who also created the stunning cover for Brown River Queen, has done two things -- first, she's made what I believe to be the best cover yet for the series. That's high praise, because all the Markhat covers have been amazing.

Second, KaNaXa shows us Markhat's face for the very first time.

No hiding behind the hat. No lurking inside convenient shadows. No peeking around a corner. You get Markhat, standing tall and plain, right there looking back at you.

Every detail is perfect, right down to his clothes. He's wearing the good coat Darla got him for Yule and the black hat he favors when he knows he's heading for trouble. And heading for trouble he is. The Five Faces is no lighthearted romp. 

This new book will mark the eighth title in the series. I've spent a lot of time in Markhat's head, a lot of time seeing out of his eyes. So I have a pretty good idea what the guy should look like.

KaNaXa nailed it. I'm so in love with this new cover it should probably file a restraining order. I believe you're going to love it too!

I'm looking at the new cover right this very moment. All I have to do is upload the image into Blogger so it will appear below. But gosh, all this technical stuff is so confusing! What does 'crop' mean? 'Select?' I hope I don't accidentally post mere portions of the new cover until I finally get it right in Sunday's blog post. That would be terrible.

Maybe it will work. So, without further adieu, I give you this -- Markhat, revealed at last!

Isn't this image supposed to be bigger?

More later!


  1. TEASE! LOLOL - that is quite a handsome hand. :)

  2. Oh my, clumsy me! I will certainly amend this grievous yet wholly unintentional error in tomorrow's blog post. Yes, yes I shall.