Über den Autor
Talbot Mundy (born William Lancaster Gribbon, 1879 - 1940) was an English-born American writer of adventure fiction. Based for most of his life in the United States, he also wrote under the pseudonym of Walter Galt. Best known as the author of King of the Khyber Rifles and the Jimgrim series, much of his work was published in pulp magazines. During Mundy's career his work was often compared with that of his more commercially successful contemporaries, H. Rider Haggard and Rudyard Kipling, unlike their work his adopted an anti-colonialist stance and expressed a positive interest in Asian religion and philosophy. His work has been cited as an influence on a variety of later science-fiction and fantasy writers and he has been the subject of two biographies.
"Jimgrim and the Seventeen Thieves of El-Kalil" originally appeared
in the February 20th, 1922 issue of Adventure magazine. This edition has been retypeset from the original magazine pages.
"Mundy's forte wasn't simply good research; Mundy was a born storyteller. Besides his predilection for creating tall tales around his early life as a scoundrel, Mundy could create larger than life heroes. Unlike creations like Robert E. Howard's "Conan" or Edgar Rice Burroughs' "John Carter of Mars," Mundy's heroes, while courageous and plenty brawny when the situation required it, were capable of bluffing, playing one enemy versus another, and exploiting the character flaws of foes, and the fortes of his associates -- traits largely absent in other adventure heroes of the time. Also, like Mundy himself, his characters pondered the meaning of life, of destiny, a spiritual development that would mold their characters and set them apart from the typical pulp heroes.
"In 'The Seventeen Thieves of El-Kalil,' Jimgrim is sent to Hebron to defuse a situation where the Moslem population, led by a family of thieves, is intent on slaughtering the Jewish population. It takes all of Jimgrim's savvy to play off the different factions until help can arrive from Jerusalem. If I had one warning about the stories for today's readers it is that while Mundy could hardly be accused of racism, his characters' views do reflect 1920s attitudes about the ethnic/religious groups of the region."
--Georges T. Dodds, SF Site