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Paperback The Wizard of Venus (Ace Books #90191) Book

ISBN: 044190193X

ISBN13: 9780441901937

The Wizard of Venus (Ace Books #90191)

(Part of the Venus (#5) Series and Burroughs Universe (#38) Series)

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Good

$6.49

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The final Amtor (Venus) novel and an ERB morality play

"The Wizard of Venus" was written by Edgar Rice Burroughs in 1941 but was not published until 1964, having spent a couple of decades in a safe. This became the fifth and final story in the Carson of Venus series, although it is clearly intended to be the first in a series of connected novellas, which was what ERB did in "Escape on Venus." Carson Napier took off in a rocket ship from Earth intended to go to Mars, but he forgot to account for the gravitational affects of the Moon and ended up on Venus. There he became entangled with the beautiful Duare, who did not give him the time of day for the first three stories, which was a moot point because usually they were separated by circumstances. The standard Burroughs formula, where the hero's beloved is captured and he has to fight his way across an alien landscape to rescue her, was less evident in these final ERB novels, although it is difficult to say whether it was World War II or the author's declining health that took most of the wind out of his sails.Once again using telepathy to pass his story on to ERB, Carson tells of an adventure with Duare and their friend Ero Shan. They first meet in Havatoo when Carson built his first anotar (the first airplane on Venus), and later when prisoners in Voo-ad. Now Carson is experimenting with a more advanced anotar and when the two friends take it out for a test flight, they have a few problems. Landing in a strange and beautiful land, they are accused of being wizards by the inhabitants of the local castle, who are worried about somebody called Morgas. Once he shows up, the fun begins in earnest. Again, these Venus books show more tongue in cheek humor than we usually find in Burroughs (Carson and Ero Shan take to calling each other Sir Galahad and Sir Gawain at one point), and overall represent the best work ERB did in his final years."Pirate Blood" was another ERB novella found in that same safe, although it was apparently written back in 1932. The hero is Johnny LaFitte, who is descended from the infamous Jean LaFitte. The story returns to one of ERB's favorite themes, heredity versus environment, and his belief that it you do not have the right environment a "bad seed" will indeed go bad. This is a very atypical Burroughs novel, filled with cold blooded murders, violent rapes, and suicide. There is even an illegitimate pregnancy between Johnny and his gal as ERB really lays on the morality play. Clearly the only reason that "Pirate Blood" was published with "The Wizard of Venus" was because they were found in that safe together. These stories have nothing in common and "Pirate Blood" really reads like a first draft that ERB just never went back and revised. The last Venus story is the attraction here, and the other a minor curiosity.

The final Amtor adventure and an ERB morality play

"The Wizard of Venus" was written by Edgar Rice Burroughs in 1941 but was not published until 1964, having spent a couple of decades in a safe. This became the fifth and final story in the Carson of Venus series, although it is clearly intended to be the first in a series of connected novellas, which was what ERB did in "Escape on Venus." Carson Napier took off in a rocket ship from Earth intended to go to Mars, but he forgot to account for the gravitational affects of the Moon and ended up on Venus. There he became entangled with the beautiful Duare, who did not give him the time of day for the first three stories, which was a moot point because usually they were separated by circumstances. The standard Burroughs formula, where the hero's beloved is captured and he has to fight his way across an alien landscape to rescue her, was less evident in these final ERB novels, although it is difficult to say whether it was World War II or the author's declining health that took most of the wind out of his sails.Once again using telepathy to pass his story on to ERB, Carson tells of an adventure with Duare and their friend Ero Shan. They first meet in Havatoo when Carson built his first anotar (the first airplane on Venus), and later when prisoners in Voo-ad. Now Carson is experimenting with a more advanced anotar and when the two friends take it out for a test flight, they have a few problems. Landing in a strange and beautiful land, they are accused of being wizards by the inhabitants of the local castle, who are worried about somebody called Morgas. Once he shows up, the fun begins in earnest. Again, these Venus books show more tongue in cheek humor than we usually find in Burroughs (Carson and Ero Shan take to calling each other Sir Galahad and Sir Gawain at one point), and overall represent the best work ERB did in his final years."Pirate Blood" was another ERB novella found in that same safe, although it was apparently written back in 1932. The hero is Johnny LaFitte, who is descended from the infamous Jean LaFitte. The story returns to one of ERB's favorite themes, heredity versus environment, and his belief that it you do not have the right environment a "bad seed" will indeed go bad. This is a very atypical Burroughs novel, filled with cold blooded murders, violent rapes, and suicide. There is even an illegitimate pregnancy between Johnny and his gal as ERB really lays on the morality play. Clearly the only reason that "Pirate Blood" was published with "The Wizard of Venus" was because they were found in that safe together. These stories have nothing in common and "Pirate Blood" really reads like a first draft that ERB just never went back and revised. The last Venus story is the attraction here, and the other a minor curiosity.
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