The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian - Robert E. Howard, Mark Schultz, Patrice Louinet You know, I used to think I hated Conan stories. That was before I realized that what I had read were in fact imperfect pastiches written by other writers in the 60's and 70's who hoped to cash in on the iconic popularity of the character.

This volume presents the stories of Conan the Cimmerian as they were written by his creator, Robert E. Howard, and a better group of dashing, creepy, brooding sword & sorcery tales couldn't be wished for. The stories are presented in the order they were written by Howard, which give us glimpses into various parts of his career: from King to freebooter, from thief to warrior, we see Conan forging his way through the Hyborian Age after Atlantis fell.

There are a load of classics in this volume from "The Phoenix on the Sword", a tale of King Conan fighting against rebellion; "The Tower of the Elephant" where Conan, a young thief, meets an otherworldy prisoner when trying to steal a fabled treasure; and "Queen of the Black Coast" a rousing pirate tale in which Conan meets his match (and more besides) in the female captain BĂȘlit.

It's great stuff. Howard's talent proves to be much greater than many of his pulp contemporaries, and while these stories may not win the pulitzer prize any day soon, they give an excellent dose of adventure and fantasy when you're in the mood. Conan might even surprise you with a few philosophical words of wisdom, by Crom!