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Publisher's Summary

Between the years when the oceans drank Atlantis and the gleaming cities...there was an age undreamed of, when shining kingdoms lay spread across the world like blue mantles beneath the stars.... Hither came Conan, the Cimmerian, black-haired, sullen-eyed, sword in hand...to tread the jeweled thrones of the earth under his sandalled feet. In a meteoric career that spanned a mere 12 years before his tragic suicide, Robert E. Howard single-handedly invented the genre that came to be called sword-and-sorcery. Collected in this volume are Howard's first 13 Conan stories in their original versions and in the order Howard wrote them. Included are classics of dark fantasy like "The Tower of the Elephant" and swashbuckling adventure like "Queen of the Black Coast."
Here are timeless tales featuring Conan the raw and dangerous youth, Conan the daring thief, Conan the swashbuckling pirate, and Conan the commander of armies. Here, too, is an unparalleled glimpse into the mind of a genius whose bold storytelling style has been imitated by many yet equaled by none.
©2002 Conan Properties International, LLC. (P)2009 Tantor
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Wes on 11-09-09

A Perfect Introduction

Having long known Conan only in generalities and film, I picked this up largely to fill in an unfortunate blank space in my pulp sci-fi/fantasy education: And it most certainly did not disappoint. Much more than just Superman with a sword, Conan impressed me as much more than just the dim barbarian of parodies and spin-offs and proves himself as the king of fantasy heroes. Howard too possesses a talent for action scenes that even nearly 100 years has not diminished, and I found his frequent introductory poems an especial surprise. While undoubtedly a product of its times, there's a visceral adventurousness and hero envy in these stories that any stick-swinging tomboy can appreciate, and if any elements feel cliche, it's only because the freshness they enjoy here in their original incarnations has been aped so many time since.

The Conquering Sword of Conan and other Howard stories are totally on my wishlist after this, and here's hoping some of Howard's horror stories make the site soon!

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15 of 15 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Noe on 10-28-09

Robert Howard's Unadorned Conan

As a lifelong admirer of fellow Texan Robert E. Howard's work, I am so pleased to see the original Conan stories released in audio with outstanding narration. The stories in this first collection are spellbinding in their scope and imagination. In hearing them again so many years later, I was struck by the realization that many lesser authors over the years have borrowed so much from Howard. Elements of his storytelling are everywhere today, but here is the unadorned original (and the very best of them all). This is not Hollywood's Conan - this is "raw" barbarism.

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11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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