Book #14. The Warlord of Mars, by Edgar Rice Burroughs. Nook.
I thoroughly enjoyed the first two John Carter novels that I read, A Princess of Mars and The Gods of Mars. But this one did contained neither the same amount of action nor of world-building that those prior Barsoom novels did.
At the end of the prior novel, John Carter’s wife Princess Dejah Thoris (along with two other women) is imprisoned in the Temple of the Sun by Issus. It is said one has to wait an entire Barsoomian year before the room the prisoner is in revolves back to the entrance. But that cliffhanger is quickly resolved, Carter’s sole mission in this novel is rescuing his wife.
Burroughs does give this short novel an epic sweep, sending Carter all over the planet tracking down this wife’s captors, to both take vengeance of them and free her. Some of the battle set-pieces were strong, but there was a sense of repetition going on, of simply moving from one action scene to another similar action scene.
I love the mix of genres at work in these novels, as well as Burroughs’ word choices, both of which are mostly bcause of the era in which this books were written, the 1910s. There is an innocence and purity in Carter’s motivations that I appreciate. Despite the quibbles I have with this particular novel, I continue to enjoy the series, and expect to read the next one shortly.
Source: I read this on my Nook, having downloaded the copy from Project Gutenberg. While I appreciate Project Gutenberg’s commitment to make copyright-free works available digitally, I have to say that the text of this book was riddled with mistakes, probably more than one per page. Whether it was scanned or typed in, the data input process was very weak.