Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Coming of the Horseclans

First off, let me apologize if my posting as been erratic. I try to maintain a "nearly daily" posting schedule. I do a good job during the week as I have a set hour a day (at least) to write. Weekends are tougher. Friends ply me with adult beverages, grilled food and late night conversations and I lose track of time. Then again, I should not complain about having good friends with free flowing beer budgets. I had to post today though to talk about my new aquisition.

I'm reading my new used copy of "The Coming of the Horseclans". I ordered the book the day Frank Frazetta died because I had this books when I was young and I mistakenly thought Frank drew the covers. I wanted the books again to stare at the covers and reflect on what an awesome artist Frazetta was.
Well, I was wrong about the cover artist. Turns out that it was Ken Kelly. It made me feel better though when I read that Ken Kelly was a student of Frank Frazetta.
So anyway, I got in my new copy of "The Coming of the Horseclans" and immediately decided that I needed to re-read the series. The author is Robert Adams and he was a career soldier before becoming a writer. His background appeals to me, but also how much time and energy he devoted to crafting the world of the Horseclans makes me want to explore his creation. For anyone who doesn't know anything about the Horseclans, here is a brief summary (you can get tons of detail on the wiki site).

It's set in post apocalyptic America but all technology is gone. Some people (Horseclans nomads) have gained the ability to mindspeak (telepathy - I probably didn't have to tell you what mindspeak was) with Horses and giant Cats (called Prairie Cats). The Horseclan Nomads fight "The Dirtmen" (farmers). The heroes of the books are those cursed with "Undying" and the are immortal (like the dudes in "Highlander").

So, I love the book. It is a self-described "lusty" tale, so it can get a bit bawdy (no complains from me). It has a real pulp fiction feel, like early Conan, but with a good mix of Sword and sorcery, post apocalyptic stuff, super powers and tons of action. I wonder if it could get published today, or if it would be viewed as a bit too pulp fiction-like. I don't know, but I am really enjoying re-reading it and I will be buying the rest of the series (1st editions if I can find them so I can stare at Ken Kelly art). I'll keep you posted and since I never finished the series back in the 70's, I'll let you know if it "jumps the shark".


1 comment:

  1. Glad you enjoyed the Horesclans series - Ken is actually Franks nephew (his mother is Franks wife - Ellie's sister) - he never was a student of Franks - Frank would encourage Ken to paint, and even got a few of his drawings to the publisher of Eerie and Creepy, but he would never "help" Ken - other than telling him is work was sub-par, and actually painting over parts Ken had painted. Frank was a grumpy womanizer - but the best and most original american artist that ever lived!