Robert Asprin passed away last week only 61 years old. He was the author of many of the books I read in my Dungeons and Dragons-laden teen years and beyond.
Most notably, he wrote the "Myth" series - books about an apprentice wizard "Skeeve" and his demon partner "Aahz." These books were great reads - only about two hundred pages tops, each. All the titles were puns on the word Myth: Another Fine Myth, Myth Conceptions, Little Myth Marker - and they were all good, silly fun. He also wrote the "Phule" series about a rich guy who buys his command of the worst space marine platoon in the galaxy (don't bite my head off if I got a detail wrong; it's been awhile since I read them). These titles were, well: Phule's Paradise, A Phule and his Money... you get the picture.
My absolute favorite piece of original art I own is this piece drawn by Phil Foglio for Asprin's book Myth-ing Persons which was first published way back in 1984. I found it on Ebay with no other bidders - it was listed in some obscure (but appropriate) category applying to book illustrations, rather than in "Comic book original art." That is less accurate, but would reach all the Phil Foglio fans that look for his stuff there. It was damaged in shipping because it was sent in a frame with glass - and poorly packed. The seller offered to refund my money, but seeing the damage was mostly those streaks across the sky that look like shooting stars, I said I'd still take it. He was happy, and I got the original art to my favorite illustration from a book series I loved.
I actually brought it to the World Science Fiction Convention in L.A. a couple of years ago, to ask Phil Foglio to blacken in the scratches to "repair" it - but he wasn't in the dealer's room, he was a guest, so I didn't run into him there. Now the scratches are part of the history of the piece to me.
I had it placed in a gray matte with a gray frame that complemented it perfectly, and it hangs by my front door. It's probably the one piece of art I see the most.
If you're not familiar with the books: Skeeve has cast a spell on his apprentice Masha to make her lighter than air so they can float up to the cell holding his partner Aahz. That's his bodyguard Guido hanging from him. They're on a vampire world, the name of which eludes me right now.
So - while I honestly have this because I'm a big Phil Foglio fan, it's a reminder that I'm a Robert Asprin fan too. I'll look at one of his collectible books I have next.
As nearly every online obit I've seen said - and I can't resist myself:
He Will Be Mythed.