It’s Thursday again so I’m participating in the Tough Travels meme which is hosted by Nathan of Fantasy Review Barn. These posts are fun explorations of common tropes in fantasy, (sometimes) inspired by Diana Wynne Jones’s The Tough Guide to Fantasyland. Join me in the search for examples of this week’s topic – and don’t forget to check out other people’s lists, they’re wonderful and my TBR pile grows every week because of them!
This week, our search will be all the more difficult because we’re looking for DISGUISES: Hiding in plain sight? Put on a disguise. Often used to sneak into an evil lair. For best results brain a guard and steal his; no one is tracking these things.
As much as I’d like to pretend otherwise, most of the Fantasyland seems to don disguises when they’re up to no good. They’re either stealing stuff or trying to murder people – but sometimes they’re also trying to save the world. You never know in Fantasyland.
- Lila Bard from V. E. Schwab’s A Darker Shade of Magic. In Grey London, Lila Bard is a thief – but everyone’s out searching for a hooded man, not a 17-year-old girl! She occasionally dresses up as a gentleman, too, so she can steal from the upper classes. The girl has style! :)
- Locke, Jean and the whole bastard crew from Scott Lynch’s The Lies of Locke Lamora. I know, you’re probably sick of me trying to stuff the gentleman bastards on another list but they fit so well! Whether these guys are playing wealthy merchants or pretending to be priests, they know their disguises. They take care of everything from clothes, hair colour, accents, mannerisms.
- Fitz from Robin Hobb’s Assassin’s Apprentice. It’s been a while since I read this but my husband reminded me of Fitz’s profession – he’s an assassin and spends quite some time disguised – it’s easier to kill people this way, apparently. Who knew?!
- Arya Stark from George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire. The girl spends half the time disguised as a boy in order to escape the wrath of the Lannisters (and everyone else trying to murder her). Dressed in filthy rags, she travels the seven kingdoms (and beyond). Poor child.
- Frodo and Sam from J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. I got this idea from Nathan’s prompt itself – and I’m really not sure whether this only happens in the movies or in the book as well, but Sam and Frodo spend some time in Mordor dressed as little orcs, since moving about as hobbits would have resulted in their being eaten, probably.
Which master of disguise have I forgotten to add to my list?
And are they changing their appearance for good or bad purposes?
Let me know what you think, I’d love to hear from you! :)