Sonntag, 25. März 2012

Pleasant Dreams & Such Stuff As Screams Are Made Of

Let’s go twice around the Bloch!

This’ll be a fairly short post this week. I’ve just gotten back from working 6 hours in the garden and I’m kinda bushed.

I have two Robert Bloch anthologies from 1979. I had both of these during my senior year of High School and lucked out a few months ago when I purchased a fairly large lot of Bloch paperbacks on Ebay for a ridiculously low price! Got to love those kids who have no interest in this stuff and let an old guy like me get the stuff fairly cheap!

I lot of younger readers might not realize how big a deal Mr. Bloch was at one time. I started out in the1930s writing for "Weird Tales” and corresponding with H. P.Lovecraft. Bloch and HPL even killed off each other in respective stories. He also wrote gritty crime novels along with his more well known works in Horror and SF. He was also a screenwriter who scripted 3 Star Trek episodes for the original series. “Cat’s Paw”, “What are little Girls made of?” and “Wolf in the Fold”. He also did scripta for shows like “Alfred Hitchock Presents” and “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.”. He had his own Horror anthology Radio show where he wrote scripts based on his own short stories! He also wrote several film scripts. 2 of these are in my DVD collection. They are “The House that Dripped Blood” and “Asylum”. These were anthology films also based on short stories by Mr. Bloch. And I guess I need to mention that the Classic film “Psycho” directed by Alfred Hitchcock was based on the Bloch’s novel of the same title.

The only thing I never cared for in Mr. Bloch’s stories is that he had a weakness for terrible puns. He usually saved his puns for “Grand-Guignol” horror stories in an “EC Comics” vein. Sometimes this works and sometimes it doesn’t. It’s mostly a matter of taste.
I think that the man was truly a giant of the field though and has been sadly missed since his passing in 1994 of Cancer. He was a HUGO and Grand Master winner among many other awards.

“Such Stuff as Screams are Made of”
Ballantine / Del Rey. February 1979. $1.95

·  Introduction by Gahan Wilson
·  The Tunnel of Love
·  The Unspeakable Betrothal
·  The Girl From Mars
·  The Head Hunter
·  The Weird Tailor
·  Lucy Comes to Stay
·  The Pin
·  I Do Not Love Thee, Dr. Fell
·  Luck Is No Lady
·  The Cure
·  The Screaming People
·  The Big Kick
·  The Masterpiece
·  Talent
·  The Final Performance
·  Life In Our Time
·  Underground
·  A Case Of The Stubborns
·  The Head
·  What You See Is What You Get
·  Nina
·  Author's Afterward

My favourite story in this collection had to be “A Case of the Stubborns”. I originally read it in “Fantasy & Science Fiction” It’s one of those rare stories that manages to be simultaneously funny, gross and touching. It even got filmed for an episode of the old “Tales from the Dark side” show. The stories in this collection run from the late 40s up to the late 70s.

The next one is a real classic!

“Pleasant Dreams”
HBJ Books. June 1979. $1.75
  1. "Sweets to the Sweet"
  2. "The Dream-Makers"
  3. "The Sorcerer's Apprentice"
  4. "I Kiss Your Shadow"
  5. "The Proper Spirit"
  6. "The Cheaters"
  7. "Hungarian Rhapsody"
  8. "The Lighthouse" (with Edgar Allan Poe)
  9. "The Hungry House"
  10. "The Sleeping Beauty"
  11. "Sweet Sixteen"
  12. „The Mandarins Canaries“
  13. „Return of Sabbath“
  14.  „One Way to Mars“

This is a reprint of Mr. Bloch’s 2nd collection that was published by “Arkham House” back in 1960. The contents have been changed a tiny bit for the paperback collection though. This collection covers stories from the late 1930s up to the late 1950s.

If anyone is interested , “Chasosium Books” has reprinted  “Mysteriesof the Worm: Early Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos”. This is a wonderful collection of ALL of Mr. Bloch’s “Cthulhu Mythos” stories and is quite a bit cheaper than buying the original 1970s paperback from “Zebra Books”.



That’s it for this week. I’m tired from gardening and it’s almost supper time.

Thanks for stopping by!


Sonntag, 18. März 2012

The Weird and the Wacky

The Weird and the Wacky….

I hope that everyone who’s reading this has had a good week. I’ve spent most of today cleaning up a flooded bathroom (broken pipe und the sink)  and hanging some chicken wire on the balcony to keep Carlos, our youngest cat, off the neighbour’s balcony. He paid them a visit this morning so something had to be done.
So anyways we’re just going to have to see how long my post for today is.

   When I was a kid the only thing cooler than made up monsters were the ones who were supposed to be real. I’m talking about Big Foot, Sasquatch, Yeti, Mothman, Sea and Lake Monsters, ETs and all of their brethren. When I was 11 or 12 I didn’t have a stack of Playboys, Gent or Gallery under the bed (These came later) like a few of my friend did. Nope, I have a stack of   “Argosy” and “SAGA” under the bed. These were the 2 best magazines for UFO and Monster stories. I mean, Hey! If it’s in print then it must be true? Am I right or am I right? 

At least that’s what I thought during the early 70s. I can still remember when I was 6 years old and we were living down on the Ohio River in Portsmouth. This was back in 1967-68 right at the time all of the “Mothman” hysteria was taking place.  I was seriously worried after seeing a few reports on TV about this stuff and having the neighbour girl’s boyfriend tell us all about it. There were also tons of UFO reports going around at the same time. These incidents went and put UFOs and “real” monsters on my Radar! A few years later I ran across a copy of “Strange Abominable Snowmen” by “Warren Smith”. The cover showing some guy in a parka about to be clubbed to death by some huge fanged Yeti was jut right up my alley.   I just had to have this book! This was one of those occasions where the begging that I mostly saved for emergencies paid of in spades. This book was filled with the stuff of nightmares and I was ecstatic! Cannibal Snowmen! Heading Hunting Snowmen! Snowmen who steal women and children! The list goes on and on. You couldn’t ask for a more lurid batch of alleged true incidences. 

My next big discovery was a few old paperbacks put together by “Frank Edwards”.  This guy was a treasure trove of “weird but true” stories. He was a journalist who did TV and Radio back during the 1950s and specialized in this kind of stuff. I had two paperbacks of his. They were “Strange World” and Stranger than Science”. Both had tons of monster stories with other things like strange disappearances, spontaneous combustion, prehistoric civilizations and so on. These books were also my first introductions to the “Bermuda Triangle”. I won’t lie to you. I at this shit up and with a big grin on my face even asked for more! 

It must have been when I was in the 8th grade or so that I stopped believing or at least I became much more sceptical. I consider myself extremely lucky that I can, as long as the story is interesting and well written, easily suspend all disbelief. I can to this day reread “John Keel’s” “The Mothman Prophecies” and still get some serious willies! It was back in the 80s when I was still in the “2nd ACR” and was pulling guard duty all by myself in a little shack in the woods. And to pass time I was reading an Alien Abduction book by “Bud Hopkins“and ended up, to my embarrassment, scared shitless! I KNEW this stuff wasn’t true but the story was so good that I believed it while I was reading it.
  Another treat were films from “Sun Classic Pictures” and also movies like “The Legend of Boggy Creek”. This “true” documentary style of films helped immensely to feed this obsession of mine about “real” monsters.
So even though these are not actual “vintage horror” they are still “vintage weirdness”!
And that has to count for something?
 Am I right or am I right?

My Bigfoot geek creds............

Here's the old "Patterson Bigfoot Film"

Trailer to "The Legend of Boggy Creek"

And some great trailers to a few documentaries from "Sun Classic"

Take care and thanks for stopping by!


Sonntag, 11. März 2012

Shambleu & The Mask of Ctulhu

A Tale of two Covers!

Hey all!
I lucked out online this week and bought some great paperbacks from a small on-line dealer here in Germany. A few of them are great cover-wise, a few are great contents wise and a few are great contents and cover wise.
The two most interesting are/were from a UK paperback house called “Consul Books”. I’m speaking of “Shambleau” by Miss C.L. Moore and “The Mask of Cthulhu” by Mr. August Derleth. Both of which sport wonderful cover Illustrations by a great illustrator who is sadly unnamed
Shambleau” is a collection of “Northwest Smith” and “Jirel of Joiry” stories which first appeared in “Weird Tales” back in the 1930s. The Jirel stories are “Sword &Sorcery” adventures where the titular heroine is the ruler of a small French kingdom back during the middle ages. These are excellent adventure stories with a strong female lead that was very atypical for the time in which these stories were written. They are action packed with a strong undertone of “regret” and “unrequited love”.  “North West Smith” is the “proto-Hans Solo”. He is a rogue, smuggler and space ship pilot travelling through a future “habitable” solar system. I’m guessing that it’s the female influence, because these stories along with being great pulp fiction also have a very thoughtful and erotic style. These stories also,IMHO, have a good dose "Robert E. Howard"," H.P. Lovecraft" and "Clark Ashton Smith" without appering derivitive in any way what so ever.

“Smith had a strange dream that night. He thought he had awakened to a room full of darkness and moonlight and moving shadows, for the nearer moon of Mars was racing through the sky and everything on the planet below her was endued with a restless life in the dark. And something . . . some nameless, unthinkable thing . . . was coiled about his throat . . . something like a soft snake, wet and warm. It lay loose and light about his neck . . . and it was moving gently, very gently, with a soft, caressive pressure that sent little thrills of delight through every nerve and fiber of him, a perilous delight—beyond physical pleasure, deeper than joy of the mind. That warm softness was caressing the very roots of his soul and with a terrible intimacy. The ecstasy of it left him weak, and yet he knew—in a flash of knowledge born of this impossible dream—that the soul should not be handled . . . And with that knowledge a horror broke upon him, turning the pleasure into a rapture of revulsion, hateful, horrible—but still most foully sweet. He tried to lift his hands and tear the dream-monstrosity from his throat—tired but half-heartedly; for though his soul was revolted to its very deeps, yet the delight of his body was so great that his hands all but refused the attempt. But when at last he tried to lift his arms a cold shock went over him and he found that he could not stir . . . his body lay stony as marble beneath the blankets, a living marble that shuddered with a dreadful delight through every rigid vein.
The revulsion grew strong upon him as he struggled against the paralyzing dream—a struggle of soul against sluggish body—titanically, until the moving dark was streaked with blankness that clouded and closed about him at last and he sank back into the oblivion from which he had awakened.“

Yep! Death by ecstasy/orgasm! And it gets even better! And come to think about it. It’s not the worst way to go.

“She was unbinding her turban...
He watched, not breathing, a presentiment of something horrible stirring in his brain, inexplicably... The red folds loosened and — he knew then that he had not dreamed — again a scarlet lock swung down against her cheek... a hair, was it? A lock of hair?... thick as a thick worm it fell, plumply, against that smooth cheek... more scarlet than blood and thick as a crawling worm... and like a worm it crawled.”

Miss More ended up Marrying “Henry Kuttner”. They, together, wrote some of the best SFthat ever appeared in the magazines. Their stories were always thoughtful and entertaining. That’s not an easy combination!
PaizoPublishing” reprinted two volumes of C.L. Moore stories!

Northwestof Earth: The Complete Northwest Smith


BlackGods Kiss (The complete Jirel stories)

Both collections of part of Paizo’s “Planet Stories Library” series and well worth looking into!

Here is the e-text to “Shambleau” which will prove to you how wonderful a writer C.L. Moore was!



The 2nd Consul collection is “The Mask of Cthulhu” by Auguast Derleth. In my eyes Mr. Derleth was a world class writer of small horror stories in the “Weird Tales” vein, a God send of a Publisher and top editor. I just can’t stand his “Cthulhu Mythos” stories. I find them lame, un-inspired and total missing the point. I will never denigrate the man though for this since IMHO he is responsible for giving Lovecraft to the larger world. And I also love his “regular” stories and almost all of the amazing anthologies he edited. So God Bless the man!

You have to admit though, that this collection probably sold very well thanks to the stunning cover!

And now a word from your sponsor……..





And here are my Edgar Rice Burroughs "Geek Creds"

I went and watched Disney’s “John Carter” this past Thursday and came out happier than a flea at a Grateful Dead concert! This is a wonderful and amazing film. If I had to sum it up in one word that word would be “JOYOUS”!!! I’ve waited for this film since 1972. The Barsoom book entered my life at just the right time. Not even “The Lord of the Rings”, which I read for the first time in 1976, hit me as hard as “Edgar Rice Burroughs” Barsoom series did. As a hard core Burroughs fan I could very easily nit-pick this film to pieces, but that would be totally pointless. There have been some serious changes made in the story and some of the characters. Covering these changes alone would take another entire blog entry. The film though taken as a whole is a complete joy though. Director Stanton and scripter Chabon have nailed the soul of this series so perfectly that nothing else matters!! Even with the changes, this is 100% ERB, John Carter ,Dejah Thoris and Barsoom. I was actually sad when the film was over. I wanted it to never end. I even ready to go out and my my own pair of “Dejah Thoris” Underoos! They film is truly greater than the sum of its parts. And believe me even with its flaws these are some awesome parts! To me this is the “Anti-1941”. I don’t know how many of you remember this Steven Spielberg comedy from the very early 1980s. In 1941 you have dozens of wonderful little bits that when put together don’t add up to jack-$hit. I can’t get this film out of my head. I pray that it succeeds so we can soon be transported back to Barsoom.


Take care everybody and have a good week!





Sonntag, 4. März 2012

Wolfshead by Robert E. Howard

 Wolfshead” by Robert E.Howard is our book this week! I lucked out big time on Ebay this past week and snagged an unread copy of the 1979 Ballantine edition with the stunning “PaulLehr” cover. And I won it for a measly €1.00! That’s $1.30 for you civilians. I had this edition back in HS and this is to my knowledge the only horror cover that Paul Lehr ever did. Just as “Richard Powers” dominated SF paperback art during the late 50s to middle 60s, it was Paul Lehr who picked up the reins from the middle 60s to later 70s. And Mr. Lehr’s art just is a recognizable and in my opinion just as iconic as Richard Power’s work. Personally, I’m a much bigger fan of Lehr than I am of Powers. Where as I find Powers cover art to be interesting in a jarring way I find Lehr’s covers to be much more beautiful. I’m just can’t get enough his bubble buildings/cities with those mobs of tiny people everywhere.
So now back to “Wolfshead”.

“Wolfshead” by Robert E. Howard.
Bantam Books. September 1979.  Cover Price $1.95
(Damn, these F###er’s  are starting to get expensive!!)

        Introduction by Robert Bloch
  • · The Black Stone · ss Weird Tales Nov ’31
  • · The Valley of the Worm [James Allison (past lives of)] · nv Weird Tales Feb ’34
  • · Wolfshead [De Montour] · nv Weird Tales Apr ’26
  • · The Fire of Asshurbanipal · nv Weird Tales Dec ’36
  • · The House of Arabu [“The Witch from Hell’s Kitchen”] · nv Avon Fantasy Reader 18, ed. Donald A. Wollheim, Avon Novels Inc., 1952
  • · The Horror from the Mound · ss Weird Tales May ’32
The only difference between the Bantam edition and the Lancer edition of about 10 years earlier is that the Lancer edition had one more story in it.  Which wasThe Cairn on the Headland”. Ok and the Lancer edition also only cost 60 cents and also had a pretty cool Frank Frazetta cover of a guy fighting a big Snake.

I consider this to definitely be a “must have” REH collection. 4 of these stories are REH at his very best. This guy wrote with a passion that has rarely been topped. “Restraint” was not in Mr. Howard’s vocabulary. If you want to know more about REH Fandom, them go on over the the REH/Conan board and check things out!
“The Black Stone” is the best of REH’s  Lovecraft inspired stories. A guy is travelling Hungary off the beaten path following up on old legends. He spends the night near a “haunted monolith” to see if it is haunted. Well, it is. Where this differs from a typical HPL story is the in Howard’s world the Narrators/Heroes don’t go insane. They might freak out a little bit, but still manage to stay sane and not wet their pants. This one gets a wee bit kinky also. Which let’s you know that HPL didn’t pen it.
On one side of this brazier lay two figures--a young girl, stark naked
and bound hand and foot, and an infant, apparently only a few months
old. On the other side of the brazier squatted a hideous old hag with a
queer sort of black drum on her lap; this drum she beat with slow light
blows of her open palms, but I could not hear the sound.
The rhythm of the swaying bodies grew faster and into the space between
the people and the monolith sprang a naked young woman, her eyes
blazing, her long black hair flying loose. Spinning dizzily on her toes,
she whirled across the open space and fell prostrate before the Stone,
where she lay motionless. The next instant a fantastic figure followed
her--a man from whose waist hung a goatskin, and whose features were
entirely hidden by a sort of mask made from a huge wolf's head, so that
he looked like a monstrous, nightmare being, horribly compounded of
elements both human and bestial. In his hand he held a bunch of long fir
switches bound together at the larger ends, and the moonlight glinted on
a chain of heavy gold looped about his neck. A smaller chain depending
from it suggested a pendant of some sort, but this was missing.
The people tossed their arms violently and seemed to redouble their
shouts as this grotesque creature loped across the open space with many
a fantastic leap and caper. Coming to the woman who lay before the
monolith, he began to lash her with the switches he bore, and she leaped
up and spun into the wild mazes of the most incredible dance I have ever
seen. And her tormentor danced with her, keeping the wild rhythm,
matching her every whirl and bound, while incessantly raining cruel
blows on her naked body. And at every blow he shouted a single word,
over and over, and all the people shouted it back. I could see the
working of their lips, and now the faint far-off murmur of their voices
merged and blended into one distant shout, repeated over and over with
slobbering ecstasy. But what the one word was, I could not make out.
In dizzy whirls spun the wild dancers, while the lookers-on, standing
still in their tracks, followed the rhythm of their dance with swaying
bodies and weaving arms. Madness grew in the eyes of the capering
votaress and was reflected in the eyes of the watchers. Wilder and more
extravagant grew the whirling frenzy of that mad dance--it became a
bestial and obscene thing, while the old hag howled and battered the
drum like a crazy woman, and the switches cracked out a devil's tune.
Blood trickled down the dancer's limbs but she seemed not to feel the
lashing save as a stimulus for further enormities of outrageous motion;
bounding into the midst of the yellow smoke which now spread out tenuous
tentacles to embrace both flying figures, she seemed to merge with that
foul fog and veil herself with it. Then emerging into plain view,
closely followed by the beast-thing that flogged her, she shot into an
indescribable, explosive burst of dynamic mad motion, and on the very
crest of that mad wave, she dropped suddenly to the sward, quivering and
panting as if completely overcome by her frenzied exertions. The lashing
continued with unabated violence and intensity and she began to wriggle
toward the monolith on her belly. The priest--or such I will call
him--followed, lashing her unprotected body with all the power of his
arm as she writhed along, leaving a heavy track of blood on the trampled
earth. She reached the monolith, and gasping and panting, flung both
arms about it and covered the cold stone with fierce hot kisses, as in
frenzied and unholy adoration.
The fantastic priest bounded high in the air, flinging away the
red-dabbled switches, and the worshippers, howling and foaming at the
mouths, turned on each other with tooth and nail, rending one another's
garments and flesh in a blind passion of bestiality. The priest swept up
the infant with a long arm, and shouting again that Name, whirled the
wailing babe high in the air and dashed its brains out against the
monolith, leaving a ghastly stain on the black surface. Cold with horror
I saw him rip the tiny body open with his bare brutish fingers and fling
handfuls of blood on the shaft, then toss the red and torn shape into
the brazier, extinguishing flame and smoke in a crimson rain, while the
maddened brutes behind him howled over and over the Name. Then suddenly
they all fell prostrate, writhing like snakes, while the priest flung
wide his gory hands as in triumph. I opened my mouth to scream my horror
and loathing, but only a dry rattle sounded; a huge monstrous toad-like
thing squatted on the top of the monolith!

Now if you’ll please excuse me for a moment, I have to go smoke a cigarette.

“The Valley of the Worm” is one of Howard’s “James Allison” reincarnation stories. This time he remembers a past life from before the dawn of known history. This is an excellent “Sword&Sorcery” story featuring his beloved “AeSir” and “Picts”. Aesir are REH’s proto Aryans and the “Picts” are his swarthy bowlegged little ass-kickers. “Valley of the Worm” deals with the “true” story behind allo f the ancient hero legends. The Aesir after wandering halfway around the worls wan’t to settle down for a while in a valley they have entered. The local Pict tribe warns them off. They don’t listen and get gobble up by something that comes up out of a huge cistern in some millennia old/pre-human ruins. The young warrior Niord(Allison) decides to put an end to this tom-foolery and kill the “worm”. I won’t say more. You have to read it to belive it! AWSOME it is!

“There was no altar-only the mouth of a great well like shaft in the
stone floor, with strange obscene carvings all about the rim. I tore
great pieces of stone from the rotting floor and cast them down the
shaft which slanted down into utter darkness. I heard them bound along
the side, but I did not hear them strike bottom. I cast down stone
after atone, each with a searing curse, and at last I heard a sound
that was not the dwindling rumble of the falling stones. Up from the
well floated a weird demon-piping that was a symphony of madness. Far
down in the darkness I glimpsed the faint fearful glimmering of a vast
white bulk.
I retreated slowly as the piping grew louder, falling back through the
broad doorway. I heard a scratching, scrambling noise, and up from the
shaft and out of the doorway between the colossal columns came a
prancing incredible figure. It went erect like a man, but it was
covered with fur, that was shaggiest where its face should have been.
If it had ears, nose and a mouth I did not discover them. Only a pair
of staring red eyes leered from the furry mask. Its misshapen hands
held a strange set of pipes, on which it blew weirdly as it pranced
toward me with many a grotesque caper and leap.
Behind it I heard a repulsive obscene noise as of a quaking unstable
mass heaving up out of a well. Then I nocked an arrow, drew the cord
and sent the shaft singing through the furry breast of the dancing
monstrosity. It went down as though struck by a thunderbolt, but to my
horror the piping continued, though the pipes had fallen from the
malformed hands. Then I turned and ran fleetly to the column, up which
I swarmed before I looked back. When I reached the pinnacle I looked,
and because of the shock and surprise of what I saw, I almost fell
from my dizzy perch.”
Out of the temple the monstrous dweller in the darkness had come, and
I, who had expected a horror yet cast in some terrestrial mold, looked
on the spawn of-nightmare. From what subterranean hell it crawled in
the long ago I know not, nor what black age it represented. But it was
not a beast, as humanity knows beasts. I call it a worm for lack of a
better term. There is no earthly language which has a name for it. I
can only say that it looked somewhat more like a worm than it did an
octopus, a serpent or a dinosaur.
It was white and pulpy, and drew its quaking bulk along the ground,
worm-fashion. But it had wide flat tentacles, and fleshly feelers, and
other adjuncts the use of which I am unable to explain. And it had a
long proboscis which it curled and uncurled like an elephant's trunk.
Its forty eyes, set in a horrific circle, were composed of thousands
of facets of as many scintillant colors which changed and altered in
never-ending transmutation. But through all interplay of hue and
glint, they retained their evil intelligence-intelligence there was
behind those flickering facets, not human nor yet bestial, but a
nightborn demoniac intelligence such as men in dreams vaguely sense
throbbing titanically in the black gulfs outside our material
universe. In size the monster was mountainous; its bulk would have
dwarfed a mastodon.

“Wolfshead” is the second REH story dealing with Msr.De Montour who happens to suffer from extremely hairy palms. Yep, he’s a werewolf. Basically a Lycanthrope friend is vacationing (several hundred years ago.) g in a huge French Castle down Africa way. What starts out as a kind of Agatha Christie locked room mystery turns into a full blown native uprising where a werewolf hero goes all ape/wolf-shit and single handedly takes on a whole mass of pissed off African warriors. This is (IMHO) an incredibly stupid story. BUT, one that is so insanely over the top as only Robert E. Howard can write them that it is one of my favourites.

Now to go on a side note: Have you ever noticed that most of these old adventure stories basically have same set up? Some white guy is somewhere where basically white guys don’t have any business being? And that they are either
1. Trying to steal something (usually from dead people)
2: Trying to be the boss of the non-white people who were there first.

No wonder the locals always seem to have a serious case of the ass. Anyways I watched (much to my shame) “2012” a few weeks ago on DVD and really hated the film. What pissed me off the most was the ending. I don’t want to spoil it for those of you who haven’t seen it, but the world ends and 99% everyone dies! Everyone that is, except for Africa. Africa makes it through in one piece. So you just know that all these African folks are probably wiping their brows, clapping each other on the back and “high-fiving” each other over their extreme good luck. You just imagine it that way. So who in the hell come sailing over the horizon then? Just 400,000 of the world’s wealthiest jerks with an army of Chinese labourers/slaves, that’s who. And you know damned well that these 0,1% of the 1%ers didn’t just have these Arks filled with caviar and art. They’re probably armed to the teeth! This completely ruins the story for me. I was kind of hoping that when they disembarked from the Arks they would be met by the “Welcome Wagon” and be given a shovel and hoe and be put to work. Nobody says the world is fair though.
Thanks to my running off course here I’ve managed to run out of time.
“Wolfshead” is a collection that delivers in every way. Grab a copy if you can find one. Even though I didn’t cover it “The House of Arabu” is the best story in the book. Set in the real world, “Arabu” deals with a northern Barbarian who is working in the Middle East as a mercenary back during the early dark ages (I think). He flees a curse and runs into Arabic Demon/gods. It’s hard to describe. Believe me though it’s a great story and the ending covers Howard’s recurring theme of Barbarism vs. civilization, which is a huge topic all by itself.
“The Argive wheeled away, toward the city, then hesitated, shaken by a fierce revulsion. The level land lay quiescent beneath the moon, and the brutish pyramid of Enlil stood up in in the stars. Behind him lay his enemy, glutting the fangs of the horrors he himself had called up from the Pits. The road was open to Nippur, for his return.
His return?-to a devil-ridden people crawling beneath the heels of priest and king; to a city rotten with intrigue and obscene mysteries; to an alien race that mistrusted him, and a mistress that hated him.
Wheeling his horse again, he rode westward toward the open lands, flinging his arms wide in a gesture of renunciation and the exultation of freedom. The weariness of life dropped from him like a cloak. His mane floated in the wind, arid over the plains of Shumir shouted a sound they had never heard before-the gusty, elemental, reasonless laughter of a free barbarian.”

So if you want to know about Robert E. Howard's amazing life and writings then go here!

And to close things off, here are a few of my favourite Paul Lehr covers!
Thanks for stopping by!

Paul Lehr Links:

 This edition of "War of the Worlds / The Time Machine is the very first book that I ever purchased with my own money! As a kid, I looked for ages for WotWs thanks to the "Classics Illustrated" version. I finally found it at the Drug Store's Paperback Rack at the "Plaza Shopping Center" back around 70 or 71. Like I've said earlier, I was a very strange child.