Monster Blood Tattoo (known in the United States and Canada as The Foundling's Tale) is a fantasy series by Australian author and illustrator D. M. Cornish. It is set in the world of the Half-Continent, where exotic and deadly creatures popularly known as monsters are a constant threat to humans. In response, humans have developed a variety of ways to fight the monsters, ranging from the use of firearms and specialized chemicals and potions, to some even having their bodies surgically transformed into powerful and deadly fighting machines. The title is derived from the practice of using a slain monster's blood in order to create a tattoo on the skin of those who have participated in the kill. These tattoos serve as a mark of pride and distinction.
The protagonist of the main works in the series, a trilogy, is the young foundling Rossamünd Bookchild, who is trying to make his way in the world after leaving his orphanage. His life changes after meeting Europe, a renowned and powerful fulgar or specialized monster-hunter who has been surgically altered to be able to generate with electricity with her body. Subsequent works are set in the same time period as the trilogy but involve other characters.
The series consists of the following:
Trilogy (2006 - 2010) Edit
The first three books in the series focus on Rossamünd Bookchild and his relationship with Europe. Each book is illustrated by Cornish and contains a map and detailed explicarium in order to help explain the highly detailed and exotic world of which the Half-Continent is just a small part.
Economous Musgrove (2013 - present)Edit
In March 2012 Cornish posted on his blog that he was working on a new novel that looked like it could expand into a multi-volume work. It is not about Rossamünd or Europe, instead focusing on a protagonist who "plays a very tiny role in Factotum". In August 2013 Cornish began publishing Economous Musgrove on his blog in weekly installments, typically every Monday. The title character is a fabulist and concometrist whose own set of adventures begin after the events of Factotum, in which he made a minor appearance.
Tales from the Half-Continent (2014)Edit
Tales from the Half-Continent is the fourth and book containing two stories set in the Half-Continent which are not directly related to the events of the trilogy. One of these is The Corsers' Hinge, a short story set between the events of Lamplighter and Factotum featuring new characters, with two recurring in Factotum. It debuted in the anthology Legends of Australian Fantasy, which was published in 2010. In March 2012 Cornish posted on his blog that he was working on an "edit/rewrite" of The Corsers' Hinge to adapt it into a standalone novella. The second story, The Fuller and the Bogle, is new.
Cornish first mentioned on his blog in August 2007 that a contract had been entered into with The Jim Henson Company to adopt the series into a film. In February 2010 he confirmed that there was a film deal and that a director and writer had been assigned.