Monday, March 21, 2011

Re-reading the Gael

As if I didn't have enough new books to read, I got sucked back into some re-reading.

Reading this for entertainment and writing inspiration.

Cormac Mac Art is, perhaps, Robert E. Howard's least realized hero. There were no sales in his lifetime, only two completed tales, and some fragments and outlines.

I don't know why these stories appeal to me so much. Perhaps it is the Irish connection; or the Viking adventure - or both.

I don't remember if I read these before I read Conan or not. Maybe this was my first realization that Howard had various series of tales featuring different heroes aside from Conan.

For those who don't know, Andrew Offutt revived the character in a series of pastiche novels during the 1970s/early1980s. I have all of them, but I've only read three so far.

Unofficially, David Drake contributed a novel, The Dragon Lord, as well. It's a fun read, if you get a hold of it.


  1. I first read these (after Conan) in a dogeared pict smashed copy of Zebra's Tigers of the Sea, and heck yeah its awesome.

    As for the Baen version, its good but I didn't really care for Drake's tale, even though The Dragon Lord is very very good.

    I've been meaning to read Offutt's run to (only missing 1) but haven't made it yet.

  2. I always thought the Cormac Mac Art collection was an odd way to start the Baen series, considering how little of Howard was in the collection.

    I think Drake's tale is okay but maybe had a little too much fantasy for a Cormac tale. I think Cormac would have been historical s&s - largely historical with small occult touches.

    I never bothered grabbing a Tigers of the Sea edition, because I had the Baen. But now I would like to see how Tierney completed "Tigers of the Sea" versus Drake's completion. (I think it was Tierney...)

  3. The conans were the first ones I read, although I like the Cormac stuff a lot. I've read most of the Offut's pastche series. Not too bad but not Howard.

  4. Cormac Mac Art was the first Howard I read, followed by the Sowers of the Thunder. Really loved the Cormac stories, shame there weren't more of them.

    I might have to track down those Offutts now.

  5. It's been quite awhile, but I could swear I liked Tierney's version better than Drake's.