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A princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs

A princess of Mars (original 1912; edition 1917)

by Edgar Rice Burroughs, Frank Earle Schoonover (Illustrator)

Series: Barsoom (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
2,413852,574 (3.63)1 / 186
Title:A princess of Mars
Authors:Edgar Rice Burroughs
Other authors:Frank Earle Schoonover (Illustrator)
Info:Chicago : A.C. McClurg & Co., 1917.
Collections:Wishlist, Read but unowned, Favorites

Work details

A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs (1912)

  1. 30
    Sea-Kings of Mars and Otherwordly Stories by Leigh Brackett (paradoxosalpha)
    paradoxosalpha: Brackett was inspired by Burroughs and often does him one better.
  2. 20
    In the Courts of the Crimson Kings by S. M. Stirling (jseger9000)
    jseger9000: In the Courts of the Crimson Kings is an homage to Burrough's Barsoom books.
  3. 10
    The First Men in the Moon by H. G. Wells (artturnerjr)
    artturnerjr: Two early 20th century works of speculation on extraterrestrial life from two of the great unfettered imaginations of English-language literature.
  4. 10
    Almuric by Robert E. Howard (Michael.Rimmer)
  5. 00
    The swordsman of Mars by Otis Adelbert Kline (Sylak)
  6. 12
    Elric of Melniboné by Michael Moorcock (artturnerjr)
  7. 12
    Star Wars: From the Adventures of Luke Skywalker by George Lucas (artturnerjr)
    artturnerjr: Anyone notice any similarities between the two?
  8. 01
    The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath by H. P. Lovecraft (artturnerjr)

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English (83)  Hungarian (1)  All languages (84)
Showing 1-5 of 83 (next | show all)
It reads like every 1950's Martian movie, but that's only because it set the standard for Martian stories. It is the original story of a man going to Mars and interacting with the alien civilizations he finds there. At times the hero is a bit too dashing, but that adds to the campy aspect of the read. It's enjoyable pulp, with a twist ending that's a bit like "what happens after the fairy tale is over?" The racial aspects of the story, red men and green men as savage warring civilizations, was laid on a bit too thick at times. Burroughs is writing from the perspective of early 20th Century America, where the Western frontier was quickly closing as white America was bringing an end to their destruction of the "red man", and at times it felt like he let his prejudices slip into the story. Overall, though, a very fun read. ( )
1 vote sbloom42 | May 21, 2014 |
I had heard from so many people about how good this books is, and frankly, I was disappointed. Maybe it is just not my thing, but John Carter seemed like a pretentious, self praising jerk. He set himself up above every other character in the book, and took numerous opportunities to assure the reader of his many skills, abilities and qualities, while feigning modesty. I understand that this book was written in a different era, but I felt that he looked down on the dog (thing) because he was a 'hideous beast' Dejah Thoris because she is a woman, the Green Men of Thark because they were less civilized than him, and the humans because they were not as clever as him. On top of that, I found the timeline hard to follow, and did not really understand if John Carter was human or not (because he did not age). Perhaps some of these questions are answered in one of the next 10 books, but I'm not sure if I can force myself to find out.
I did like the technology aspect of the book though. I found it really interesting especially because of when it was published.
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoy's Civil War era science fiction. ( )
  AngelaRenea | May 12, 2014 |
I loved this story. On my kindle it listed it as 81 pages.

This is a fast paced book. It immediately threw you into John Carter's life. Next thing we are on Mars. Struggling to figure out what has happen, where he is, and who are these Martians.

I couldn't read fast enough. I just bought the next 7 books. I have to find out what is going on with the Martians on Mars. What becomes. of John Carter? ( )
  cbilbo | Apr 8, 2014 |
I loved this story. On my kindle it listed it as 81 pages.

This is a fast paced book. It immediately threw you into John Carter's life. Next thing we are on Mars. Struggling to figure out what has happen, where he is, and who are these Martians.

I couldn't read fast enough. I just bought the next 7 books. I have to find out what is going on with the Martians on Mars. What becomes. of John Carter? ( )
  cbilbo | Apr 8, 2014 |
Hmmm. Such a hard book to review - on one, a classic science fiction story from 1912- on the other hand, a story that isn't all that well written. I do think people interested in Science Fiction should read it - but there is so much better science fiction out, that you should skip this if you are looking for a good story.

John Carter is man of Chivalry and Honour - Which is to say, he is willing to kill without regard to life if its a lower being (Which is almost everybody in this book). He has all sorts of super powers and able to pick things up quickly. John can do no wrong. Add to it that he can turn around an entire culture in the space of a book (using good old American Morality). And Generally, becomes almost Godlike by the end.

I do like that the author used current (for the age) science to explain his points, such as the gravity of Mars and implementing the newly discovered element of Helium into the story line (the princess is often referred to as "The Princess of Helium" by John Carter in the book.

So- take it for what it is, an early example of science fiction that is written without much regard to literary values. ( )
1 vote TheDivineOomba | Apr 6, 2014 |
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» Add other authors (48 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Burroughs, Edgar Riceprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Abbett,BobCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bradbury, RayIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brick, ScottNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ilmari, SeppoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nelson, MarkNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pennington, BruceCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Whelan, MichaelCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To my son Jack
First words

To the Reader of this Work:
In submitting Captain Carter's strange manuscript to you in book form, I believe that a few words relative to this remarkable personality will be of interest.
I am a very old man; how old I do not know.
"Was there ever such a man!"
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
This is the French version of "A Princess of Mars," even though the literal English translation of the French edition's title might suggest otherwise.
Norman Bean is a pen name for ERB
Publisher's editors
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References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
This swashbuckling adventure on Mars isn't strictly a space opera, since protagonist John Carter doesn't use a spaceship to reach the red planet. But Burroughs' 1911 novel, the first in a long series about Barsoom (the natives' name for Mars), depicts aliens and other planets in ways that will be familiar to anyone who has seen Star Wars. It's one of the most influential interplanetary adventures in the genre. You can read io9 contributor John Marr's posts about the Barsoom novels here, if you'd like to learn more about the books.
A Duel to the Death

The Green warrior decided to close in and end the battle; just as he rushed me, a blinding light struck full in my eyes, so that I could not see Zad's approach and could only leap blindly to one side to avoid his mighty blade.
It caught me in the left shoulder; but as my vision cleared a sight met my astonished gaze that almost made me forget the fight Standing on her chariot with Sola and Sarkoja, my beloved Dejah Thoris turned on Sarkoja with the fury of a tigress and struck something that flashed in the sunlight from her upraised hand. Then I knew what had blinded me at the crucial moment, and how Sarkoja had found a way to kill me without herself deliver the final thrust!
Sarkoja, her face livid with baffled rage, whipped out her dagger and aimed a terrific blow at Dejah Thoris - and Zad was once more advancing on me with reddened blade, I felt the steel tear into my chest and all went black before me ...
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0345331389, Mass Market Paperback)

Although Edgar Rice Burroughs (1875-1950) is justifiably famous as the creator of Tarzan of the Apes, that uprooted Englishman was not his only popular hero. Burroughs's first sale (in 1912) was A Princess of Mars, opening the floodgates to one of the must successful--and prolific--literary careers in history. This is a wonderful scientific romance that perhaps can be best described as early science fiction melded with an epic dose of romantic adventure. A Princess of Mars is the first adventure of John Carter, a Civil War veteran who unexpectedly find himself transplanted to the planet Mars. Yet this red planet is far more than a dusty, barren place; it's a fantasy world populated with giant green barbarians, beautiful maidens in distress, and weird flora and monstrous fauna the likes of which could only exist in the author's boundless imagination. Sheer escapism of the tallest order, the Martian novels are perfect entertainment for those who find Tarzan's fantastic adventures aren't, well, fantastic enough. Although this novel can stand alone, there are a total of 11 volumes in this classic series of otherworldly, swashbuckling adventure. --Stanley Wiater

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:27:39 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Let the adventures begin, as Captain John Carter finds himself transported to the alien landscape of Mars--where the low gravity increases his speed and strength exponentially. Taken prisoner by Martian warriors, he impresses them with his remarkable fighting skills, and quickly rises to a high-ranking chieftain. But the heroic Carter's powers thrust him right in the middle of a deadly war raging across the planet--and a dangerous romance with a divine princess.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 11 descriptions

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Average: (3.63)
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1 11
1.5 4
2 37
2.5 12
3 155
3.5 47
4 198
4.5 20
5 95


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