Under the Moons of Mars: New Adventures on Barsoom

Under the Moons of Mars: New Adventures on Barsoom

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by John Joseph Adams, Various

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Celebrate 100 years of John Carter of Mars with this all-new collection of original stories and art!

Readers of all ages have read and loved Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Barsoom series since the first book, A Princess of Mars, was published in 1912. Now, in time for the 100th anniversary of that seminal work, comes an anthology of original stories

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Celebrate 100 years of John Carter of Mars with this all-new collection of original stories and art!

Readers of all ages have read and loved Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Barsoom series since the first book, A Princess of Mars, was published in 1912. Now, in time for the 100th anniversary of that seminal work, comes an anthology of original stories featuring John Carter of Mars in brand-new adventures. Collected by veteran anthology editor John Joseph Adams, this anthology features stories from titans of literature such as Peter S. Beagle and Garth Nix and original art from Mark Zug, Charles Vess, and many more—plus an introduction by Tamora Pierce and a glossary of Mars by Richard A. Lupoff.

Illustrations are by prominent artists Meinert Hansen, Charles Vess, John Picacio, and more.

Don’t miss Mars Trilogy, the companion bind-up of three classic John Carter of Mars stories!

This book has not been prepared, approved, licensed, or authorized by Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc. or any other entity associated with the Edgar Rice Burroughs estate.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Taking advantage of the big-screen release of the film John Carter, this competent anthology, set on Edgar Rice Burroughs's Barsoom, includes stories featuring the eponymous hero of the series, plus other characters now brought more fully to life in tales of their own. In Joe R. Lansdale's "The Metal Men of Mars," Carter is captured by a monstrous, Borglike, steampunk society planning to conquer the planet and turn everyone into machines. In Peter S. Beagle's "The Ape-Man of Mars," Tarzan is transported to Barsoom where he meets John Carter and the two alpha males find it hard to coexist on the same planet. And in Garth Nix's "A Sidekick of Mars," a gold prospector transported to Mars by an old Indian curse explains in colorful Western lingo what it was like to be Carter's sidekick—and to later discover that Burroughs omitted him when retelling the tales. The works closely honor Burroughs's own, with self-assured characters, concrete storytelling, high adventure, and touches of tongue-in-cheek humor. A worthwhile introduction (or, for adult readers, a return) to one of Burroughs's most imaginative universes. Ages 12–up. (Feb.)
From the Publisher
"Plenty of sword work and old-style action-adventure, with the occasional clever spin."--Kirkus Reviews

"It's inconceivable that this volume won't send readers back to the original novels."--Booklist

"An excellent collection that sci/fi adventure fans will enjoy, and it may guide a new generation of readers to Barsoom."--School Library Journal

VOYA - Steven Kral
In 1912, Edgar Rice Burroughs published a serial in All Story Magazine. Following the success of Burroughs's Tarzan novels, the stories were collected in book form as A Princess of Mars . In a series of ten novels and a collection of short stories, Rice Burroughs created a vibrant world and spun tales that are still iconic examples of high adventure. The hero of these stories, Civil War veteran John Carter, finds himself on Mars after hiding in a cave to evade a group of Apache warriors who have been tracking him. Gifted with exceptional strength and reflexes thanks to Earth's greater gravity, Carter wins the respect of the savage Tharks and the love of the beautiful Dejah Thoris, and he becomes Warlord of Barsoom (the Martians name for their world). This anthology collects fourteen new adventures on Barsoom, Essentially a collection of Rice Burroughs pastiches, the stories present new episodes in John Carter's career or flesh-out aspects of Barsoom's culture and societies. As with all anthologies, some stories succeed better than others. While the anthology does present an index to John Carter's world, it presumes a familiarity with the novels. It would be a good addition to a library that already carries the novels, but a library looking to capitalize on the recent Disney movie would do better to feature the original Burroughs novels. Reviewer: Steven Kral
Kirkus Reviews
Fourteen swashbuckling new adventures extend the exploits of John Carter and his descendants on Edgar Rice Burroughs' version of the Red Planet. Poised to catch any wave of interest (or at least publicity) that may come along with the release of the film John Carter, the collection features the eponymous Civil War vet and other characters from the original series facing a typical array of multi-legged monsters, multi-armed warriors, defeated adversaries rising again and weird remnants of ancient science. Highlights include: Tarzan walk-ons in stories by Peter S. Beagle and S.M. Stirling; an account of a drunken thoat-lifting contest in Garth Nix's hilarious "Sidekick of Mars" that somehow never made it into the canon; a tale from Chris Claremont that transplants Carter, Dejah Thoris and Tars Tarkas to Jasoom (Earth); and the valedictory "Death Song of Dwar Guntha," (Jonathan Maberry) about one last great battle before planet-wide peace breaks out. Written in prose that evokes the sweep of the originals ("And as the moons sailed through the black ocean of the sky, John Carter, Warlord of all Barsoom, sang of the last charge of the great Free Riders. And such a tale it was….") and with a full page image of a well-armed (in more ways than one), often scantily clad figure in each, these pay fitting tribute to a gifted pulp writer. Plenty of sword work and old-style action-adventure, with the occasional clever spin. (foreword by Tamora Pierce, story introductions, author bios, Barsoomian Gazetteer) (Science fiction short stories. 11-13)
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Just in time for the recently released Disney movie comes a new collection of stories based on Edgar Rice Burroughs's "Barsoom." Sci-fi and fantasy authors like Tobias S. Buckell, David Barr Kirtley, Jonathan Maberry, and Garth Nix have contributed new stories about John Carter's adventures on the red planet. Some of these selections are retellings of the original stories from another character's point of view, some are set after the series, and there is one fan-fiction story about Tarzan waking up on Mars and meeting John Carter and Dejah Thoris. Each selection opens with a short paragraph that gives a little background on the story. This is an excellent collection that sci/fi adventure fans will enjoy, and it may guide a new generation of readers to Barsoom.—Erik Carlson, White Plains Public Library, NY

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Product Details

Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
8.40(w) x 5.90(h) x 1.40(d)
1050L (what's this?)
Age Range:
12 Years

Read an Excerpt


When Edgar Rice Burroughs published A Princess of Mars in 1912 (originally published as a serial in the magazine All-Story, as Under the Moons of Mars), he gave birth to the iconic character John Carter and his wondrous vision of Mars (or as the natives call it, Barsoom). With this setting and character, Burroughs created something that has enthralled generation after generation of readers. Now, a hundred years after the series first debuted in print, new generations of readers—thanks, in part, to the new Disney/Pixar film—are still finding and discovering the adventures of John Carter for the first time.

Edgar Rice Burroughs—who also authored the Tarzan and Pellucidar series, and dozens of other books—wrote only ten Barsoom novels (plus one collection of two stories). Yet anyone who’s read the novels cannot help but imagine the plentiful adventures of John Carter and his ilk that were never cataloged by Burroughs. The last Barsoom story written by Burroughs (“Skeleton Men of Jupiter”) was published in the magazine Amazing Stories in 1943, intended to be one of a series of short stories that would later be collected into book form. It was the last ever published by Burroughs, however, and legions of fans have been left waiting for the new adventures of John Carter ever since.

Until now.

This anthology depicts all-new adventures set in Edgar Rice Burroughs’s fantastical world of Barsoom. Some of the stories in this volume, such as Joe R. Lansdale’s “The Metal Men of Mars” and “The River Gods of Mars” by Austin Grossman, imagine the new or lost adventures of John Carter, while others focus on the other characters and niches not fully explored by Burroughs. So if you’ve ever wanted to find out what happens to the villainous Thark Sarkoja after her encounter with John Carter, Robin Wasserman’s tale “Vengeance of Mars” delivers. Or if you’ve ever wanted to know more about John Carter’s calot companion Woola, then Theodora Goss’s “Woola’s Song” fills in those gaps. Catherynne M. Valente’s story “Coming of Age on Barsoom,” unveils some hidden truths about the Green Men of Mars, and details how John Carter might not have understood their culture as well as he thought he did.

Some of the stories, meanwhile, deal with John Carter and Dejah Thoris’s descendants . . . such as Genevieve Valentine’s tale, “A Game of Mars,” which has John Carter’s daughter Tara playing Barsoom’s deadliest game—Jetan! We also have two tales exploring the adventures of the children of Llana of Gathol and the Orovar Pan Dee Chee; L. E. Modesitt, Jr.’s, story, “The Bronze Man of Mars,” has one of John Carter’s great-grandsons returning to the ancient city of Horz, while S. M Stirling’s story, “The Jasoom Project,” has another great-grandson endeavoring to find a way to travel to Earth (Jasoom) via spaceship.

Authors David Barr Kirtley and Tobias S. Buckell deliver plenty of action and adventure in their tales; in “Three Deaths,” after losing a duel with John Carter, Kirtley’s Warhoon warrior Ghar Han swears revenge, and in “A Tinker of Warhoon,” Buckell presents us with a Green Martian like we have never seen—one whose greatest weapon is his brain, not his brawn.

Two of our stories examine what would happen should John Carter encounter new visitors from Earth on Barsoom. Peter S. Beagle’s story, “The Ape-Man of Mars,” speculates what might have happened if John Carter had encountered Tarzan, Burroughs’s other most famous literary creation, in the sands of Barsoom. Garth Nix’s tale, “A Sidekick of Mars,” imagines the possibility that John Carter had an irascible sidekick throughout most of his adventures who was never mentioned in any of the write-ups of Carter’s adventures published by Burroughs. Chris Claremont’s story, “The Ghost That Haunts the Superstition Mountains,” meanwhile, imagines John Carter, Dejah Thoris, and Tars Tarkas are instead transported to Earth, and there encounter not only the great Indian chief Cochise, but weapons of mysterious origin as well.

And then we have “The Death Song of Dwar Guntha,” which shows us a distant future in which John Carter is poised to finally bring an end to the endless cycles of warfare that have rocked Barsoom . . . but gives us one last epic battle for the ages to remember it by.

Whether you’re a longtime fan, or you’re new to Barsoom, I hope you enjoy these all-new adventures of John Carter of Mars.

In the novel The Gods of Mars, John Carter finds himself transported to the Valley Dor, which the Barsoomians believe to be a heavenly paradise, a place to which they willingly travel at the end of a long, full life. He finds instead that the place is a fiendish trap, and he is immediately set upon by hordes of monstrous plant-men—savage, faceless creatures who bound after their prey and strike with wicked tentacles. And this is hardly an isolated incident. Carter just seems to have a knack for stumbling upon hidden corners of Mars in which undreamt-of horrors lurk. Many of these horrors involve wondrous Martian technology, which is far advanced beyond what we know on Earth. The most visible examples of Martian technology are the fliers and airships of the Red Men of Mars, but more grotesque examples abound. Perhaps the most vivid example of Martian science occurs in the novel The Master Mind of Mars, in which we are introduced to the mad scientist Ras Thavas, who runs a business transplanting the brains of wealthy clients into healthy young bodies. In Synthetic Men of Mars, Carter visits Morbus, city of Ras Thavas, where the scientist is engaged in other strange experiments, such as growing men from a single cell. So it would seem that with Martian science, anything is possible. In the tale that follows, John Carter once again stumbles upon a secret realm, and finds himself face-to-face with some new technology that’s visceral and terrifying even by Barsoomian standards.

© 2012 John Joseph Adams

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What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
"Plenty of sword work and old-style action-adventure, with the occasional clever spin."—Kirkus Reviews

"It's inconceivable that this volume won't send readers back to the original novels."—Booklist

"An excellent collection that sci/fi adventure fans will enjoy, and it may guide a new generation of readers to Barsoom."—School Library Journal

Meet the Author

John Joseph Adams is the bestselling editor of many anthologies, including Wastelands, The Living Dead (a World Fantasy Award finalist), By Blood We Live, Federations, and The Improbable Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. He is also the fiction editor of the forthcoming science fiction magazine Lightspeed, and is the co-host of The Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast. John lives in California.

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Under the Moons of Mars: New Adventures on Barsoom 2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Absolute garbage. Did any of the authors (or the editor) actually read any of the original ERB books? Tarzan beating up John Carter, Dejah Thoris kissing Tarzan, John Carter acting like a jerk to Tarzan because he considers Tarzan a Yankee, and dancing, yes dancing, with the great white apes? I can see why this is listed as an completely unauthorized book. The estate of ERB would never allow this to be published. Additionally, the artwork is very poor. If you're a true fan of the John Carter of Mars books, stay away from this book. It will only confuse and aggravate you, much like the poor movies about JC that came and went within days. Stick with the original 11 books by ERB. This book is poorly writen. The authors and the editor should be ashamed. Very disappointed.
finbarmccool More than 1 year ago
I was greatly disappointed by this book. The writing was generally poor, and most of the authors seem to have gathered their information of Barsoom from faded postcards of Tarzana California. None of the stories contained the wonder and romance of Burroughs original Martian stories, and the artwork was, for the most part, bland. An unimpressive collection of amateurish writing. On the plus side this sad, sorry volume did send me back to the original Burroughs stories...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
No better than amateur writing