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Published: 1939
Language: English
Wordcount: 45,739 / 127 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 72.1
LoC Category: PS
Downloads: 24,558
Added to site: 2007.12.10 19333
License: ©

An interplanetary epic of sword and sorcery. First published in Weird Tales, May-Aug. 1939 (copyright unrenewed).

Show Excerpt

versary of his single garment, belt and weapon, and transferred them to my own frame. This done, I felt some slight renewal of confidence. At least I was partly clothed and armed.

I examined the dagger with much interest. A more murderous weapon I have never seen. The blade was perhaps nineteen inches in length, double-edged, and sharp as a razor. It was broad at the haft, tapering to a diamond point. The guard and pommel were of silver, the hilt covered with a substance somewhat like shagreen. The blade was indisputably steel, but of a quality I had never before encountered. The whole was a triumph of the weapon-maker's art, and seemed to indicate a high order of culture.

From my admiration of my newly acquired weapon, I turned again to my victim, who was beginning to show signs of returning consciousness. Instinct caused me to sweep the grasslands, and in the distance, to the south, I saw a group of figures moving toward me. They were surely men, and armed men. I caught the flash of the sunlig


Average Rating of 3.8 from 13 reviews: ****
Dai Alanye

Never before read a Howard book. Excerpts led me to consider him a good wordsmith but the content always turned me off. Almuric convinces me my previous decisions were wise.

Esau Cairn, our hero with mightiest thews on Earth… [What are thews anyway? Seen the word many times but never heard it used in conversation. Turns out it's from AngloSaxon þeaw = habit or custom. Walter Scott, for reasons of his own, re-defined it as physical condition, and Edgar Rice Burroughs used it as a synonym for muscles.]

Written in first person, Esau assures us he has the mightiest thews on Earth, as well as rippling sinews. What he doesn't admit to is that he's a musclebound clod.

Sent to a weird planet by The Perfesser using unspecified means, he arrives naked, since only the body can thus travel. Luckily his tooth fillings are retained, and as a bonus he learns the local tongue en route.

As soon as he hits the sod he's attacked by a gorilla-man whom he manages to defeat by superior knowledge of fisticuffs. He dons his foe's loincloth (eeww!) and takes his stabber, a blade forged by dwarves of ancient times. And what do you think he does next? Does he cut himself a sturdy shaft to fend off the sabertooths, make a javelin so he can hunt deer, construct a fire drill to obtain warmth and cook food, assemble a lean-to for shelter?

None of these, I'm sorry to point out He doesn't so much as cut some grass for bedding. Instead he simply shivers all night on a ledge where hyenas have chased him. The tale continues in this vein for a fair number of pages, concluding in a happy ending for our often-wounded, often-captured but always fortunate hero. Oh—and he gets the gorilla-girl.

Don't miss the man-eating flying monkeys.

Raj Chohan

An interesting action story that can be read again and again. It is a pleasure to read. Although it is not a Conan story, when reading you can feel the main character is him.


A good light read, don't go into this one expecting something deep. Good barbarian tale

K. Fewell

This book reminds me of Edgar Burroughs John Carter of Mars Books . It would make a great movie using CGI for the Special effects. I enjoyed it very much!

Julie Bruner

Slow start but finished big! Good book!


Amazingly similiar to the Barsoom Series by Edgar Rice Burroughs. A good add to the genre, if you are a fan of the era.

Enjoyable read.

R Stephan

Between surprise attack and reconvalescence: while the story caters for the testosterone junky, it still is well written and a page turner.

Brad Wallwork

An unusual Howard novel, and there are some doubts as to wether or not he actually wrote it.

Nevertheless, I love this book. It is a rich, invigorating read jam-packed with larger-than-life heroes and roaring good times. The fight scenes are visceral and energetic. The good guys are simple and solid -- the bad guys are demonic, whimsical and sadistic.

The plot is very straight forward. My favorite part is where hero Esau Cain is inducted into the Gura tribe by means of a huge, 500-man shouting match that lasts 12 hours.

Highly recommended. Buy this book if you get the chance because it is hard to find.


An abnormally strong human can't adapt to regular life. He is transported to a new world with viscious predators and tribes of humanoids stronger than him although not as dextrous or skilled in fighting. He exists, prevails, joins tribe, falls in love, unites warring tribes and defeats the evil winged monsters cementing his new life in the world of Almuric.

Good for 15 year old's and a fun read for any pulp fan.


A fantastic tale for a good short read. Hard to believe this was written almost 70 years ago. Great imagery and Howard's energetic storytelling helps you imagine him shouting out the text as he typed it.


Besides agreeing wholeheartedly with C. Alan Loewen
(DOES knaw at your leg =) ) the book places you wonderfully in Almuric, with just enough description to help you picture it, mostly because there's always some critter charging so descriptions don't get overly long.
Howard is one of the classics in heroic fantasy and this is one of his best; well written, balanced and constantly entertaining.

C. Alan Loewen

Almuric is the ultimate he-man pulp from Robert Howard in a tale so laden with testosterone that you don't read the story as much as it jumps off the page and gnaws on your leg for awhile.

Esau Cairn is a man who makes Conan the Barbarian look like a pantywaist. Escaping from a charge of murder, Esau finds a scientist who sends him on a one-way trip to a far-flung and primitive planet.

Much blood, gore, and grunting ensues.


This is my favourite Howards book.

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