Moonday’s Literary Heroic Hunk: Tariq the Tuareg

Meet Tariq the Tuareg (or the Gorgeous or the Mysterious) the harem master who saved, Emmy, the heroine in my debut historical novel HIS OBSESSION, from sale in the slave markets of Bou Regreg.  Or at least the pic of how I pictured him.

The Tuareg are a nomadic Berber people who inhabit the Saharan regions of North Africa. Tuareg is an Arabic term meaning abandoned by God. The Tuareg who consider themselves white (though some are very dark) call themselves Imohag, the free men. Since ancient times the Tuareg used the trade routes to transport salt and spices, and slaves.

The men are known for wearing a dark blue veil that covers their head, neck, and face which they begin wearing when they are young adults. (Notice the blue dye faded onto Tariq’s face.) They’re called the Blue Men of  the Sahara or Men of the Veil. Unlike most north African tribes, they are matrilineal. The origin of the nomadic Tuareg , where they came from or when they arrived in the Sahara is unknown. That is until I remembered where I had seen that distinctive facial structure.

Check out a pic of  Tuareg men against the death mask paintings of 2,000-year-old mummies (and a reconstruction from a skull) from the Fayyum Oasis in Hawara in an ancient Egypt cemetery.


The mummies are believed to be descendents of the elite Greek soldiers who helped Alexander the Great conquer Egypt in the 3rd century BC, then served Ptolemy, the first Greek pharaoh.  

See more pics and read excerpt of  Tariq and Emmy’s first meeting at Next week, the Anatomy of a Cover and a Request for Reader Critiques.  Rita Bay


5 Responses

  1. I love the way you make history so personal, Rita. It’s a gift, and never take it for granted! Hope things are going well with HIS OBSESSION. Readers are in for a real treat!

  2. Interesting post!! You know Volkswagen used to make a Toureg. Wonder if this was the inspiration for the name?

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