Tuesday, April 10, 2018

The Phoenix on the Sword by Robert E. Howard

The Phoenix on the Sword
by Robert E. Howard

This is just a short story of about 20 pages or so featuring Conan the Barbarian, written by the creator of the character, Robert E. Howard. Often seen as a traveler, Conan has a bit of a different position in this story as king of a land he had conquered. There are some people plotting to murder him and in sort of a dream-like reality he is forewarned of this assassination attempt and acquires a phoenix marking on his sword which enables it to slay demons. I found it very entertaining and full of action while vividly creating the Conan world I’m used to seeing in his and Red Sonja’s comics. If you enjoy sword and sorcery stories, the Conan movies or comics, or Red Sonja, this deserves a try. I enjoyed it quite a bit and if I had more reading time would most likely read more of the Howard stories featuring Conan; I’ve been told by someone whose read them all, that the order in which you read them does not matter as they told in a non-consecutive manner anyway.

You can read this story on Hoopla as “The Phoenix on the Sword” or it can be listened to on Hoopla or OverDrive as the first story in the collection of Conan stories by Howard “The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian”. It is also freely available on Australia’s Project Gutenburg.

[NOTE: This story is literally the first “Conan” story written and published by Howard, and is credited with launching the “Sword & Sorcery” genre.]

[If you enjoy this, also on Hoopla is The Phoenix on the Sword, which is a comic by Timothy Truman. I’m guessing it’s the same story but I haven’t read it, but I do think it’d be interesting to read both and compare them.]

[ Wikipedia page for Robert E. Howard ] | [ official Robert E. Howard/Conan web site ]

Recommended by Kristen A.
Gere Branch Library

Have you read this one? What did you think? Did you find this review helpful?

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