Customer Reviews for

The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

start of the sword and sorcery sub-genre. The tales are well written and enhanced by terrific illustrations

This anthology consists of the first thirteen (in chronological order of when released) Conan tales, which most literary historians agree were the start of the sword and sorcery sub-genre. The tales are well written and enhanced by terrific illustrations by Mark Schult...
This anthology consists of the first thirteen (in chronological order of when released) Conan tales, which most literary historians agree were the start of the sword and sorcery sub-genre. The tales are well written and enhanced by terrific illustrations by Mark Schultz. Those who grew up with the Schwarzenegger films will find Howard¿s Conan a much more complete character (actually the Marvel Comic book series captured more of the original essence). The stories are exciting though they were written in the 1930s. The collection also includes much more information on the Conan tales including maps, an untitled draft and several synopses of potential future tales. The Miscellanea and Appendix sections are fun to read during spare moments as fans will gain an understanding of how creative the author truly was, but clearly the exhilarating stories is where the superb reading experience is at as that affirms Mr. Howard¿s greatness.----- Harriet Klausner

posted by harstan on December 9, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

The first 13 of Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian stories h

The first 13 of Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian stories have been re-published in this trade paperback.

Don't judge these by the standards of the Schwarzenegger films. (I happen to like those films, but for other reasons.) Written in the 1930s, these are literal...
The first 13 of Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian stories have been re-published in this trade paperback.

Don't judge these by the standards of the Schwarzenegger films. (I happen to like those films, but for other reasons.) Written in the 1930s, these are literally the original sword and sorcery stories, with the brutal Conan constantly encountering monsters, enslaved princesses and evil sorcerers. Anyone who likes fantasy should read at least a couple, even if only to see how the genre began. My personal favorite is "The Tower of the Elephant."

Now for the caveats.

These stories were aimed at a largely male pulp magazine audience. This was the 1930s equivalent of today's action film. Therefore, the testosterone quotient is pretty high. Women are usually depicted as weeping damsels in distress, which won't please some female readers.

The plots shamelessly cater to adolescent male fantasies and insecurities. Conan, the man of action, is always able to master whatever unexpected situation he's thrown into, usually by kicking butt all over Cimmeria, or Aquilonia, or whatever mythical country he finds himself in. Beautiful women melt at the mere sight of him. The plots are contrived so that these women are forced by circumstances to share his company. By the time the story's over, they refuse to leave him.

When you get right down to it, the sullen, inarticulate Conan is essentially a rather one-dimensional character. But I didn't care about that when I read these stories as a teenager.

After Howard committed suicide, other authors somehow took over the franchise and kept writing new Conan stories. Avoid these inferior works. I think they are now out of print, but they turn up regularly in used bookstores.

posted by Arthur_Coombe on November 15, 2012

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  • Posted March 21, 2014

    Good read

    This is a little disjointed

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  • Posted May 10, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Conan is coming!

    this was my first conan book an i was not disappointed the excintment was constant, the threats were colossal. that is something i love dearly, overwhelming odds, i see it all the time in the legend of drizzt, Gotrek and Felix, and Malus Darkblade. There were splashes of romance here and there, which i find unique among all the fantasy novels i have read which is quite considerable.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 14, 2005

    True Conan is to be savored

    I stumbled upon this book when it came out and have been reading it in my spare time. I've relished it like a fine wine. Howards Conan is unique and full of savage fury. As an amatuer writer, I admire his prose and sentence structure. Sometimes I have to go back and read lines over because they're so packed with complexity. This book is part of the new wave that has post-humorously gone back to the TRUE Conan that Howard wrote. After all these years we're able to see what he originally meant. No Arnold here. Highly recomended.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2004

    CROM!

    Last year I saw the movie Conan the Barbarian, and I was blown away. I was amazed at the sheer ferocity of the character. A few months later I got this book, and I found out how poorly the movie depicted everyones favorite barbarian. My favorite stories are The Frost Giants Daughter and The Queen of the Black Coast. Even between this and the monthly comic book from Dark Horse I still can't get enough of the blood-thirsty adventurer.

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    Posted April 30, 2009

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    Posted January 19, 2012

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    Posted April 14, 2009

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    Posted December 26, 2010

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    Posted July 15, 2010

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    Posted August 18, 2010

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    Posted March 31, 2010

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