Tarzan of the Apes [NOOK Book]

Tarzan of the Apes

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I Out to Sea
II The Savage Home
III Life and Death
IV The Apes
V The White Ape
VI Jungle Battles
VII The Light of Knowledge
VIII The Tree-top Hunter
IX Man and Man
X The Fear-Phantom
XI "King of the Apes"
XII Man's Reason
XIII His Own Kind
XIV At the Mercy of the Jungle
XV The Forest God
XVI "Most Remarkable"
XVII Burials
XVIII The Jungle Toll
XIX The Call of the Primitive
XX Heredity
XXI The Village of Torture
XXII The Search Party
XXIII Brother Men
XXIV Lost Treasure
XXV The Outpost of the World
XXVI The Height of Civilization
XXVII The Giant Again
XXVIII Conclusion

Chapter I

Out to Sea

I had this story from one who had no business to tell it to me, or to
any other. I may credit the seductive influence of an old vintage upon
the narrator for the beginning of it, and my own skeptical incredulity
during the days that followed for the balance of the strange tale.

When my convivial host discovered that he had told me so much, and that
I was prone to doubtfulness, his foolish pride assumed the task the old
vintage had commenced, and so he unearthed written evidence in the form
of musty manuscript, and dry official records of the British Colonial
Office to support many of the salient features of his remarkable

I do not say the story is true, for I did not witness the happenings
which it portrays, but the fact that in the telling of it to you I have
taken fictitious names for the principal characters quite sufficiently
evidences the sincerity of my own belief that it MAY be true.

The yellow, mildewed pages of the diary of a man long dead, and the
records of the Colonial Office dovetail perfectly with the narrative of
my convivial host, and so I give you the story as I painstakingly
pieced it out from these several various agencies.

If you do not find it credible you will at least be as one with me in
acknowledging that it is unique, remarkable, and interesting.

From the records of the Colonial Office and from the dead man's diary
we learn that a certain young English nobleman, whom we shall call John
Clayton, Lord Greystoke, was commissioned to make a peculiarly delicate
investigation of conditions in a British West Coast African Colony from
whose simple native inhabitants another European power was known to be
recruiting soldiers for its native army, which it used solely for the
forcible collection of rubber and ivory from the savage tribes along
the Congo and the Aruwimi. The natives of the British Colony
complained that many of their young men were enticed away through the
medium of fair and glowing promises, but that few if any ever returned
to their families.

The Englishmen in Africa went even further, saying that these poor
blacks were held in virtual slavery, since after their terms of
enlistment expired their ignorance was imposed upon by their white
officers, and they were told that they had yet several years to serve.

And so the Colonial Office appointed John Clayton to a new post in
British West Africa, but his confidential instructions centered on a
thorough investigation of the unfair treatment of black British
subjects by the officers of a friendly European power. Why he was
sent, is, however, of little moment to this story, for he never made an
investigation, nor, in fact, did he ever reach his destination.

Clayton was the type of Englishman that one likes best to associate
with the noblest monuments of historic achievement upon a thousand
victorious battlefields--a strong, virile man--mentally, morally, and

In stature he was above the average height; his eyes were gray, his
features regular and strong; his carriage that of perfect, robust
health influenced by his years of army training.

Political ambition had caused him to seek transference from the army to
the Colonial Office and so we find him, still young, entrusted with a
delicate and important commission in the service of the Queen.

When he received this appointment he was both elated and appalled. The
preferment seemed to him in the nature of a well-merited reward for
painstaking and intelligent service, and as a stepping stone to posts
of greater importance and responsibility; but, on the other hand, he
had been married to the Hon. Alice Rutherford for scarce a three
months, and it was the thought of taking this fair young girl into the
dangers and isolation of tropical Africa that appalled him.
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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940012859242
  • Publisher: SAP
  • Publication date: 3/10/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • File size: 221 KB

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 210 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 213 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2002


    I had seen some Tarzan films before I read this book. I wanted to read it to see how Burrough's vision differed from the diffrent films that chronicled Tarzan's origin. And, I must say that I was amazed at how rich and entertaining THIS FANTASTIC BOOK was. I so enjoyed it. I highly recommend this book to anyone who would like to see this legendary character in his true splendor, or to anyone looking for a good read.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 15, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Swinging Fun Time

    I think most people have at least a vague concept of the Tarzan story and its characters. There have been many official Tarzan movies over the years and many stories and other movies that refer to or borrow from the Tarzan mythos. To a large extent, I went into this first Tarzan book (there were over 20 books written) with a pretty good feel for what to expect from the storyline. Despite that, I found some unique elements that I didn't expect.

    The adventure story within the book is pretty much what I had expected from the movies and TV shows I'd seen. There were a few elements where movie-makers had taken some liberties (possibly with concepts from other books and sometimes to make things more "screen worthy" - such as "me tarzan, you jane" which never happens in the book). I actually found that the adventures of the book were pretty fun to read and kept the pace of the book moving rather well.

    The book dealt a lot with exploring the character of the characters and the concept of what makes a man. At some times, these sections of narrative were interesting and insightful. At other times, these segments felt poorly informed, assumptive and racist/misogynistic . Generally speaking, the negative aspects of character development distracted me from the positive workmanship to the point that I had a hard time placing any validity on any of the characters.

    Scientifically speaking, Tarzan's development in the wild is completely unbelievable and his later development of "human" traits is likewise unbelievable. Setting those concepts under the "suspension of disbelief" clause used in fiction, I then got hung up on the behavior of the animals and especially of the other humans.

    The Women are as helpless lumps of life with their main purpose in life being to provide something that man can provide for and save from hardship and peril. The Men are inconsistent and can either be heartless self-centered ingrates willing to hurt (or kill) anyone for their own advancement, well-intentioned heroes who are physically incompetent and unable to follow through, or complete idiots unfit to do anything productive at all. Tarzan is the only "true man" and as such he finds himself ostracized and unable to find a happy existence either in civilization or the jungle (though he definitely prefers the jungle).

    Despite not being a fan of the way the characters were portrayed or the way everyone interacted with each other, I still enjoyed the story and there's a part of me that wants to read some of the other books simply for the fun, fluffy enjoyment of wild adventures. Burroughs writing style was fluid and rich and provided for a quick and enjoyable read. This is a book worth reading for the fun of it and to look at its influence on the media and culture of the 100 years since it was written.

    3 Stars

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 8, 2000

    Simply Amazing

    I read this book not long after the Disnesy movie Tarzan of the Apes came out and I must say that this book is one of the BEST I've ever read!!! I would definately recommend it to anyone who loves adventureous or romantic stories! Those are my favorite types of books. Tarzan of the Apes kept me always looking forward to reading the next page, always wondering what would happen to the characters next. There are so many twists and unexpected turns in the story that it always kept me interested. IT'S THE MOST AMAZING BOOK EVER!!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 23, 2011

    Love this book!

    I thoroughly enjoyed Tarzan of the Apes when I was a kid, I read it several times, and reading it again many decades later has been a delight. It's been a great escape. I appreciate B&N Classics Series, the great prices encourage me to revisit many classics I grew up with, and also read some great classics for the first time.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Notable Classic

    I very much believe this belong in every reader's library.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 1, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Extremely better than I thought it would be!

    Everyone knows the Tarzan story, right? Well, I thought I did but I didn't. This story was thoroughly engrossing and moves very, very fast. There are some uncomfortable themes (Burroughs' ethnocentric view towards other races, etc.), but I think it comes with the times in which it was written. The storylines are fantastic and leave you wanting to read the next chapter. Some parts are unbelievable (a man killing apes, lion, etc. or a man swinging through the trees carrying another person), but the escapism and adventure are thrilling. It was a fun read that I would definitley recommend.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 14, 2011

    A gorgeous new edition

    Once again Fall River dips its toes into the Burroughs stream, following their beautifully illustrated repackaging of the first three John Carter of Mars books in 2009. In addition to reissuing the Carter books separately (but sadly without Thomas Yeates' incredible illustrations), they've turned their attention to Burroughs' most popular creation, Tarzan of the Apes. If you haven't yet read this classic, you won't find a nicer-looking version than this. Daryl Mandryk's cover painting is easily the most attractive since the Neal Adams/Boris Vallejo covers for Ballantine Books in the 1970s.

    As always, though, the question with any new printing of a Burroughs novel is whether the rest of the series will follow. THE RETURN OF TARZAN has already been announced for October, and text on the cover and spine of this volume teases us that it's "The Adventures of Lord Greystoke, Book One." It's been a very long time since all 24 books have been in print; were Fall River to take that step, this format would certainly be a welcome one.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2013

    I loved it!

    I never thoght I would like Tarzan of the Apes until I read A Princess of Mars. I liked it so much that I thought I would see what Tarzan was like, since it was written by the same auther. As soon as I picked it up, I couldn't put it down until I had finished it. Edgar Rice Borroughs was an incredibly imaginative writer and I can't wait to read his other books!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2012


    (Spoiler Alert) For a story that was disliked by many great authors including the one who wrote it, I found it entertaining, at least until the end. I think the story could have done without the transition from ape-man to Frenchman and the abrupt ending where Tarzen gives up Jane leaves much to be desired and too many questions as to why he would go through all of that for nothing and does he choose to go back to living as an ape-man since he no longer has reason to stay? I think the author hints to this at thw end, but the hint really wasn't very clear. Despite the last few terrible chapters, I still found this story entertaining and worth the read.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 24, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Enjoyed it now as much as I did as a kid

    Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Bur­roughs is the famous novel of the boy who was raised by simi­ans in the jun­gles of Africa. The book was first seri­al­ized in All-Story Mag­a­zine 1812 and pub­lished in 1814.

    John and Alice Clay­ton (Lord and Lady Greystoke) are aban­doned on the coast of Africa after a mutiny on their ship. They barely sur­vive but man­age to cre­ate a shel­ter and have a baby; how­ever they are no match to the jun­gle ani­mals who despise the strangers. Their infant though has been adopted by Kala, a female ape who recently lost her own son. Pro­tected by Kala, Tarzan (white skin) grows in a soci­ety filled with tow­er­ing brutes who won­der why the small white ape takes so long to grow up.

    A few weeks ago I put in a request to review Jane: The Woman Who Loved Tarzan by Robin Maxwell, the Tarzan story from the per­spec­tive of Jane (post com­ing next week). I then decided to re-read the orig­i­nal Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Bur­roughs to refresh my mem­ory has it has been decades since I read it first.

    I did not regret that deci­sion for a moment and can cer­tainly under­stand why Tarzan achieved a cult icon sta­tus. Bur­roughs wrote an excit­ing novel, mak­ing the unbe­liev­able seem some­what plau­si­ble in a story which tags on the read­ers’ imag­i­na­tion almost every page.

    The char­ac­ters, espe­cially that of Tarzan, are mas­ter­fully writ­ten, com­bin­ing intel­li­gence and wis­dom. We have grown up on a char­ac­ter of Tarzan who barely speaks, but in the book he is a com­plex char­ac­ter with intel­li­gence and brawn to match. The char­ac­ter is writ­ten with child­like inno­cence and alarm­ing vio­lence which in turn makes Tarzan an inter­est­ing and com­plex character.

    The begin­ning of the book deals mostly with Tarzan’s par­ents, John and Alice Clay­ton, who have found them­selves in the midst of a tragedy despite their best efforts. We are all used to sto­ries of hope, Bur­roughs played that angle won­der­fully, I still felt sad­dened by their untimely end which was sad and vio­lent despite know­ing of their demise ahead of time.

    Each chap­ter it seems is a new adven­ture in which Tarzan learns a new skill, whether it is to read or to use a weapon. Tarzan feels con­flicted between his iden­tity as a mem­ber of the ape soci­ety and his self taught skills which put him above a phys­i­cally supe­rior specimen.

    Tarzan, being a prod­uct of his upbring­ing, sees every­one as sub-human, includ­ing whites – until he meets Jane (and later D’Arnot). Tarzan feels the apes are intel­lec­tu­ally infe­rior, the natives are phys­i­cally infe­rior and the whites are morally substandard.

    We could learn a lot from Tarzan, who helps the inno­cent and help­less with­out sac­ri­fic­ing him­self or his goals. The pro­tag­o­nist does not need, nor does he under­stand, social approval or soci­ety pres­tige, he has enou

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2012


    I liked the book. But is hard to read with all the editing problems. I personly like the disney verison better. It has a petter mooral of the story. But thats just me.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 18, 2012


    The overview makes this book sound completely differrent from the disney movie(i seen the movie with my little sister)

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 17, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Good fantasy...

    The first thing I notice is the first two thirds and last third of the book are nearly completely different voices of narrative. It's very hard to tell if that's on purpose.

    The book starts out with an overwhelmingly negative view of the female characters, even more so that other books of the time. They're little more than furniture for the men to move around. But the end Jane has attained not only a voice but an actual character.

    The book itself is excellent adventure of the wish-fulfillment variety, a power trip fantasy and possibly a raging against the modernization of the male psyche. Parts of it read a lot like heavy metal music, especially to a fourteen year old boy...

    Burroughs as certainly written better novels with less one dimensional characters, and this one tries a little too hard to match up to the late 19th century Adventure Novels. Very strong early pulp writing here.

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  • Posted September 24, 2011


    Thiss book is amazing. IT IS DEFINATLY a well spent dollar Burroughs did an amazing job with this book and ledt me craving for more. The many twists and turn in the story make it amazing and i would recommend this to anyone. Great book for all ages. MUST READ!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2011

    Need to read the book that started the legend

    An easy read and a good book. Written in 1912 by Edgar Rice with a passion of the wilderness and how one man ruled his jungle,educated himself, and falls in love.

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  • Posted May 15, 2011

    Poor editing

    Although the book was free, one would think that it could have been edited better. There were so many typos that it was difficult at times to read. Download a different version.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 22, 2011

    Great book

    After all these years, still a great read. I read this same book when I was thirteen and I am amazed at how much I forgot and got mixed up with later books and the movie versions. My mom had the original series and they are the ones I read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2010

    Was alright

    I got really into this book at the beginning. However once Jane was introduce it started to feel like a soap opera and the author started getting annoying with how often he describes Tarzan as being the perfect human being with steel hard muscles. I don't really see how it got as popular as it is.

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  • Posted August 22, 2009

    Over the Top Classic

    The character of Tarzan really has stood the test of time, although Edgar Rice Burrough's writing style and ideas of an "elite race" are extremely dated and even offensive, his character of Tarzan remains a noble savage that feeds our dreams of other lives ... that are more daring and closer to the essence of who we are

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 28, 2007

    This story swings(from the trees)!

    A great read, Burroughs wrote a classic of literature. I find it interesting that American cinema tends to portray Tarzan as a kind of stylized brute, while Burroughs actually presented him as a self taught man in the wild. This story is a great look at civilization from outside it. The prose was well written and meaningful. I proceeded to read other books in the Tarzan series, which were not disappointing.

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