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'In Dodgy Circumstances'
Talking Pulp Fiction with Gama Man
More Rusty Vignettes
Sat, Feb 6, 1:28 PM (2 days ago)
Thoroughly enjoyed the episode on pulp fiction. Really brought me back to my childhood and early to mid teens.
I was exposed to Burroughs and Howard via comic books initially (Tarzan, John Carter, Conan, Solomon Kane, etc.), and discovered that my dad had an omnibus collection of John Carter books, which I read at the ripe old age of 13, complete with Frazetta or Frazetta-like cover illustrations. And most of my exposure to Conan was the comic book versions, never read the stories until recently.
In the past 10 years or so, I read almost everything from H. Rider Haggard, which really fed into my fascination with Africa in the Victorian era, including probably one of the most accurate, though fictionalised, accounts of the Zulu wars and the characters of Shaka Zulu and Cetewayo.
I also have had the pleasure of reading a lot of John Buchan over the same period, and although more pedestrian than his American counterparts (his protagonists tend to be British civil servants on holiday in the Scottish Borders), his brand of pulp fiction is another reminder of what they took from us, when even maintaining civilisation required a certain type of man of action to be able to look after himself in dodgy circumstances.
And, of course, mentioning the Flashman series, too…I could think of no better way to learn revisionist history about the British Empire. I’ve read the whole series through twice.
Many thanks to you, Rusty, and Richard, for evoking a lot of pleasant memories.
-Gama Man

Sir, thank you so much for the kind word and enthusiasm.
The talk with Rusty and Richard rambled and deepened in spots and I was unable to mention some really cool and fun paperback pulp I read from the 1970s. I don't remember all the authors but:
-Allan Burt Akers, The Drey Prescott cycles of planetary adventure such as Suns of Scorpio. There is easily 24 books in this series, with the hero having come up in the British Navy in the Age of Sail.
-Andrew J. Offiut, My Lord Barbarian and When Death Birds Fly and The Iron Lords
-Author forgotten, The Coming of the Horse Clans and A Cat of a Silvery Hue, post-apocalyptic fantasy
-Lyn Carter, Renegades of Callisto and Thongor against the Gods
-Phillip Jose Farmer, Hadon of Ancient Opar, Two Hawks from Earth, To Our Scattered Bodies Go and the other Riverworld short novels
-John Norman, the Gor series, starting with Tarnsman of Gor, with the hero Tarl Cabot of earth going from liberal college graduate to iron age slave master, easily 20 volumes, which after the first 7 get too bogged down in S&M fantasies. Boris Vallejo's best cover art
-Hal Clement, various science fiction short novels from the 50s and 60s
-Andre Norton, Cat's Eye, Garon the Eternal, the Witch World short novels and the science-fiction adventure Galactic Derelict
-The best Tarzan book for kids is #3 Beasts of Tarzan. For men, I like #5 Tarzan and the Jewels of Opar. For youths, Tarzan the Magificent, with him strangling a baboon on the cover is my favorite. Also, the best Pellucidar book is probably Tarzan at the Earth's Core, which is in both series.
-For western pulp, Robert E. Howard's the Last Ride and Louis L'Amour The Key-Lock Man and Down the Long Hills are my favorite short novels.
My best pulp fiction in the Robert E. Howard tradition has to be Yusef Of The Dusk
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