Friday, August 08, 2014

Forgotten Books: Edgar Rice Burroughs: Master of Adventure - Richard A. Lupoff


In the mid-Sixties, Edgar Rice Burroughs was probably my favorite author. I had discovered both the Tarzan series and the Mars series about the same time and was consuming them feverishly every time I came across one, which was pretty often in those days when Ace and Ballantine editions of books from both series were easy to find. So I was really thrilled to come across this volume, which not only provided me with information about Burroughs and his writing career that I didn't know but also discussed Burroughs novels I didn't even know existed! This book is the reason I read some of those novels, like THE MUCKER and THE BANDIT OF HELL'S BEND and THE MAD KING. For that reason alone I'd be grateful to Richard A. Lupoff for writing it, but it's also a well-written, very entertaining volume in its own right. Plus it has that great Krenkel cover. The book is still available in a slightly revised edition, but this is the one I read sitting on the front porch of my parents' house on a summer afternoon nearly fifty years ago, an experience I remember vividly.

And in one of life's oddities so common now in the Internet age, Richard A. Lupoff and I are both members of a Yahoo group, and I read his postings about various subjects daily. If you'd told that to that little kid on Hankins Drive all those years ago, I probably wouldn't have believed it.

But I would have wanted to.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

I devoured ERB novels in the late 60s/early 70s. In 8th grade I used to spend my lunch money on ERB. Read virtually every novel multiple times as a kid.

Wonderful memories of a happier time.

Scott Parker said...

Great to know a book like this about ERB exists. And in another oddity in the Internet age, there is no ebook available. Hafta get the paper.

Does Lupoff discuss ERB's writing process and how he was able to crank out all those books?

ravencrowking said...

I was lucky enough to score a copy of this at Eliot's Bookshop on Yonge Street in Toronto a couple of years back. It's a good read.

Victorian Barbarian said...

I checked the Canaveral Press edition of this book out from the West Branch Library in Fort Worth sometime when I was in Junior High(we were living in Springtown, but my dad had a rent house in Fort Worth, and in those days they would let us have a library card on that basis). A few years later I picked up a used copy of the Ace edition shown. I found Lovecraft and de Camp books at that same library, although not much Burroughs. But by that point I was picking up those paperbacks whenever I could.

Scott Parker said...

Aha! The Houston Public Library has a copy...and I just put it on hold.

James Reasoner said...

Scott,
I don't remember how much detail Lupoff goes into about ERB's writing process, but I'm sure there's some of that in the book.

Chuck,
I'll bet you're talking about the West Branch Library a couple of blocks off Camp Bowie. Livia used to go there sometimes, too, but it was never one of our main stops. That stretch of Camp Bowie seemed like our home away from home for a while, though. When I worked for Half Price Books it was in the next shopping center to the east of whatever street that is that goes down to the library.

James Reasoner said...

"Livia and I", I meant to say.

Todd Mason said...

And Dick was responsible, as editor at Canaveral, for getting a lot of the more obscure ERB titles they published out, iinm...

Bob Sankner said...

It's a Frazetta cover, not Krenkel.

James Reasoner said...

Thanks, Bob. I didn't look it up, and I still get those two confused sometimes, even after all these years of enjoying their work.