WORLDS OF EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS EDITED BY MIKE RESNICK AND ROBERT T. GARCIA

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Copyright 2013 except The Forgotten Seas of Mars 1965.

TARZAN AND THE GREAT WAR by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Tarzan is in the Kasbah looking for leads to his wife Jane who was taken by Germans. After meeting a man who had no information he is contacted by French intelligence. They want to use him in exposing a group of traitors selling secrets to the Germans. Soon after the head of intelligence is murdered and Tarzan is battling the traitors with the help of an Englishman who had come to strip Tarzan of his title and fortune for the war effort.

THE FALLEN A TALE OF PELLUCIDAR by Mercedes Lackey

A story told by Mok who is an intelligent Sagoth in the service of David Innes. Mok was experimented on by the Mahars and is the only intelligent Sagoth. While visiting Kolk the king of Thuria in the Land of Awful Shadow a woman with wings falls from the sky. She is an inhabitant of the Dead World. Her people are under attack by the Mahars who have fled to the moon after being defeated. Mok is the only one who can communicate with her since she uses the same language as the Mahars. They have an adventure with a storm and hostile island natives. The woman falls in love with the kings son.

SCORPION MEN OF VENUS by Richard A. Lupoff

Carson and Duare are under attack by scorpion men and flying snakes when they are rescued by a mysterious flying ship. It takes them to a complex run by Dr. Bodog and his daughter and son. Bodog comes from Earth and the continent that sank in the Pacific ocean centuries ago. He is also insane and plans to take over the Earth. He goes back with Carson and his daughter who Carson has fallen in love with and land in Los Angeles during a football game.

THE FORGOTTEN SEA OF MARS by Mike Resnick

The writer is in an Arizona cabin that was used by Edgar Rice Burroughs. He meets John Carter and convinces him to tell the story after he defeated Hin Abtol. So Carter starts the search for Tan Hadron who disappeared when mutineers took him. From criminals in Zodanga he learns of another underground sea at the north pole. In the city of Ayathor he finds Hin Abtol continuing his plans of world conquest with another large army of men frozen. He finds Tan Hadron and with another rebel manage to overthrow him.

APACHE LAWMAN by Ralph Roberts

Shoz-Djiji the Apache Devil has settled down in the white man’s world. He manages the ranch of his love Wichita Billings. One day Marshal Fast Sam Dawson comes and offers Shoz a job as a deputy sheriff. Seems another renegade Apache has learned from the white-eyes and plans to take over the territorial government. He manages to stop his plans.

MOON MAID OVER MANHATTAN by Peter David

The story of Nah-ee-lah when she came to Earth. At first she is a celebrity and hounded by the press. Later the Kalkars those commie moon men invade. When her husband dies while killing Orthis she and her young son hide out in Canada. They are pursued by Orthis’s woman and her son for revenge.

TARZAN AND THE MARTIAN INVADERS by Kevin J. Anderson and Sarah A. Hoyt

Tarzan is at his English manor when he comes across writing from his ancestor who sailed with Drake. He finds out that Martians are coming to invade in Africa where he was born and raised. He goes back and gathers the apes and other animals to fight these tentacled invaders who can control the minds of men.

THE TWO BILLYS A MUCKER STORY by Max Allan Collins and Matthew Clemens

Billy Byrne has made the ultimate sacrifice by leaving his love Barbara Harding. He soon after gets a message from her that her fiance was kidnapped. So Billy goes off into the Chicago underworld to get him back.

TO THE NEAREST PLANET as told to Todd McCaffrey

The author buys an old typewriter and Edgar Rice Burroughs used. It starts typing and tells the story of Tangor and his trip from Poloda to find another world free of Kapars. The first world they come to Tonos. This world was destroyed in a war and now run by a computer. The remaining people are dying off until he educates them on how to run the machines on the world.

THE DEAD WORLD as related by David Innes to F. Paul Wilson via Gridley wave

David Innes is visiting Thuria when a meteor strikes. It releases a deadly spore that soon takes over the Land of Awful Shadow and starts spewing poisonous gas. David with Perry and Koort the young son of the king of Thuria go by balloon to the Dead World. They find out that the moon is really an artificial ship created by ancient aliens that created Pellucidar. Now they are returning and terraforming Pellucidar. David and friend have to battle cleaning robots to stop the plan.

TARZAN AND THE LAND THAT TIME FORGOT by Joe R. Lansdale

Tarzan is coming back from Pellucidar in the O-220 when a story blows the ship to the southern hemisphere and crashes into the ocean. The only survivors are Tarzan, Captain Zuppner and a young Pellucidarian girl named Zamona. The make it to Caspak and battle cannibals that fly pterodactyls. Zuppner and Zamona decide to stay as Tarzan searches for a way home.

This was a cool idea for an anthology. Getting a bunch of writer together and put out stories from the worlds of Edgar Rice Burroughs. They manage to cover all the base with not only Tarzan and John Carter but Pellucidar and Venus. They also get stories from Burrough’s lesser know works like the Moon Men, Apache Devil the Mucker and Caspak. They even had the continuing story from Beyond the Farthest Star. Many of the writers did a good job of emulating Burroughs. Even using the various first person narratives. Some like the martian invaders or the second Pellucidar story did not feel like something Burroughs would have written but were still entertaining.

The only story I didn’t care for was Lupoff’s Carson story. It was very un-Burroughs like to have Carson and Duare so quickly fall out of love. The romance that Burroughs wrote was one of the strong points to his writing and he just casually has them switch partners. It also just ended like it was only halfway through the story. I suppose there might be a continuation but I found it a complete waste of time. In spite of this story the others made this book a worthy effort.

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MAHARS OF PELLUCIDAR BY JOHN ERIC HOLMES

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Christopher West is a graduate student in biology. His associate a Dr. Kinsley has developed a matter transportation beam and is using it in a project to drill deep into the earth. While visiting him they are surprised when the drill breaks into a cave that is inhabited. The primitive inhabitants start to worship the drill and are going to offer up human sacrifices.

Chris springs into action. He grabs a fire axe and uses the matter transmitter to teleport him to the cave. There he rescues a beautiful woman named Var-na. They escape to her village and Chris finds out that he is the land of Pellucidar the inner world.

He is called Red Axe after his weapon and settles into an idyllic life among his new friends. Later representatives from the cave tribe arrive with a message from the gods. Chris decides to go back to tell his friends about his discovery and with his mate Var-na head back to the cave.

They are betrayed, captured and sold to the Mahars. Taken to this race of intelligent reptiles city the two are made slaves. The book then deals with Red Axe’s efforts to free him and his friends from the Mahar city.

One of the few books authorized by the Burroughs estate I found it an interesting book. Holmes stays true to the spirit of the world Burroughs created yet adds his own unique style. It takes place in a different part of Pellucidar so there is none of the characters from the series. He is supposed to have written a sequel called Red Ax of Pellucidar but the Burroughs estate blocked it in a dispute. I hope some day to read it. Holmes reinvigorated the series in a new direction.

SAVAGE PELLUCIDAR BY EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS

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David Innes is visiting the tribes of his empire. He is betrayed by the king of Kali and taken prisoner. As this goes on Dian his mate is testing out a hot air balloon. It breaks its moorings and carries her off to unknown lands. What follows is your basic quest of the various parties involved to find one another.

It takes them to a land across the ocean inhabited by men with bronze age technology. Along the way there are new dangers, new people and new creatures.

This is the final book in the Pellucidar series. Actually it is a collection of four stories that link together. Three of the stories were discovered after Burroughs death and published posthumously. I thought it was an exciting adventure and a good addition to the series.

My final thoughts on the Pellucidar series. I really think it was a unique idea. I am always a sucker for lost prehistoric worlds. He created a rich land full of endless possibilities.

LAND OF TERROR BY EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS

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The sixth series in the Pellucidar series finds David returning from his expedition to find Von Horst. He is captured by the women of Oog. Oog is a land were the roles of women and men are reversed. He manages to escape but then fall into captivity by the Jukans.

It is here that David is reunited with his mate Dian. She had set out to find David and was also captured by the Jukans. They both escape and have further adventures with giant men, giant ants and floating islands before reaching their home of Sari.

The final Pellucidar novel that was published in Burroughs lifetime. The story was a solid adventure if not distinguishing itself in any special way. I would place this in the good not great category.

BACK TO THE STONE AGE BY EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS

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In the last book one member of the expedition from the O-220 was never accounted for. This is the story of Erich Von Horst.

Erich or as the locals call him Von got separated and captured by the Torodon (pterodactyls). There he meets Dangar a fellow prisoner from Sari. The two escape and form a friendship. While on the way to Sari they meet Skruf and are tricked into accompanying him back to his village with promises of friendship. Instead they are betrayed and forced into slavery.

While there Von meets La-ja a fellow prisoner. Von organizes a slave revolt and the three escape. They then have adventures in trying to return La-ja back to her tribe. They encounter the Gorbuse, an underground race of cannibalistic albinos. Then they have to survive the Mammoth men.

Von and La-ja make it back to her tribe. There Von kills the evil Gaz, wins the love of La-ja and the chieftainship of the tribe. At the end an expedition lead by David arrives looking for him. Von decides that he would prefer to remain in Pellucidar.

The next book in the Pellucicar series is a good solid adventure story. Nice to see that he didn’t forget about poor old Von Horst.

TARZAN AT THE EARTH’S CORE BY EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS

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Jason Gridley has mounted an expedition to rescue David Innes from the Korsar dungeon. While in Africa to obtain a light metal for the dirigible that he will use he encounters Tarzan. He convinces him the join the expedition with his Waziri warriors.

The dirigible named the O-220 takes off from Germany and enters Pellucidar through the North Pole opening. Here Tarzan decides to do some exploring but gets lost in the unfamiliar environment. Jason leads an expedition to find him and is attacked by a pride of Saber-tooth tigers. Jason gets lost from the rest of the expedition and finds Jana fleeing capture from a hostile tribe.

What follows is the adventures of Tarzan intercut with that of Jason and Jana. Eventually they reunite and are able to free David.

This book has a lot of sentimental value for me. I was thirteen and had just moved to Elko Nevada. I had no friends and this was before the internet and video games. My mom took me down to the library that summer to find a book. I decided on this one. It had a cool name with a cover of a mammoth fighting off saber-tooth tigers. I had loved to old movies and comics of Tarzan so I thought I would give it a try.

That day I fell in love with reading. The adventure of an exotic world filled with cavemen, dinosaurs, saber-tooth tigers, pirates and snakemen captivated me that day. I spend the rest of the summer reading every book from ERB from the library. I eventually branched out to other authors. I guess fate choose that time and place with this one book. It inspired me to want to be a writer. Something that I am seriously finally pursuing in life.

TANAR OF PELLUCIDAR BY EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS

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Jason Gridley is experimenting with a new radio wave when he gets a message. His invention has made contact with Pellucidar and Abner Perry. Perry recounts the story of Tanar.

The Empire of Pellucidar has grown and prospered since the overthrow of the Mahars. A new enemy comes to the shores of the empire. Korsars, descended from eleventh century Spanish pirates attack. They are repulsed but at great cost. Tanar the son of Ghak the king of Sari has been captured. The Korsars want to get the secret of the empires superior gunpower and bring Tanar to their capital.

Along the way a storm shipwrecks Tanar with Stellara the daughter of the Korsar leader. Through a series of adventures the two fall in love are recaptured and taken to the Korsar city. There they are united with David Innes who was also captured. Tanar and Stellar escape after finding the north polar opening to the surface world. Emperor Innes is still a prisoner in the dungeons of the Korsars. The book ends with Jason deciding to mount a rescue mission.

This is probably one of my favorite stories that Burroughs wrote. Tanar and Stellara are a classic romantic tales. It also sets up the only crossover that Burroughs did Tarzan at the Earth’s Core.