Nemedian Dispatches 2011 — No. 2

This is the second 2011 post of the online version of Nemedian Dispatches. This feature previously appeared in the print journal until I moved it to the website last year. On a quarterly basis, Nemedian Dispatches will highlight new and upcoming appearances of Howard’s fiction in print, as well as Howard in other types of media.

In Print:

Since I just recapped all the new books that appeared at Howard Days last week, I won’t repeat that information here, but I will list other new items.

The Big Book of Adventure Stories
This huge collection of pulp stories features Howard’s “The Devil in Iron” and a ton of other stories by a “who’s who” of pulp fiction writers, including Edgar Rice Burroughs, Clark Aston Smith and Jack London. This hefty volume is edited by Otto Penzler.

The Golden State Phantasticks: The California Romantics and Related Subjects
Donald Sydney-Fryer presents a thick volume containing a number of essays on Clark Ashton Smith, Ambrose Bierce, Robert E. Howard and others.

A Means to Freedom: The Letters of H. P. Lovecraft and Robert E. Howard
Hippocampus Press has published a trade paperback edition of its two volume hardcover set containing the correspondence of fictioneers H. P. Lovecraft and Robert E. Howard. This collection is annotated and edited by Rusty Burke, S. T. Joshi and David E. Schultz.

Robert E. Howard’s Savage Sword #2
The second issue of this first-rate comic features the writing of Robert E. Howard, Marc Andreyko, Joe Casey, Roy Thomas, Paul Tobin and art by Tim Bradstreet, Gil Kane, Ernie Chan, Pop Mhan and Michael Atiyeh, with a cover by Tim Bradstreet. REH’s Savage Sword features a number of Howard’s heroes in new adventures and restored, re-colored reprints of classic tales. Conan, El Borak, Dark Agnes, Sailor Steve Costigan, and Roy Thomas and Gil Kane’s long-out-of-print classic, “The Valley of the Worm,” re-colored and reprinted.

Red Nails and The Hour of The Dragon
These are a couple of knock-off paperback editions of two of Howard’s better Conan yarns published by some outfit named Aegypan.  Hardly worth your time unless you must own everything ever published by REH.

Kindle & E-Books:

Adventure, Horror & Western Megapacks
Each of these genre collections contains 25 stories each. The Adventure Megapack contains REH”s “Son of the White Wolf,” the Horror collection has “Children of the Night, while the Western set has two Howard yarns, “Texas John Alden” and “War on Bear Creek.”

The Complete Adventures of Breckenridge Elkins
Howard’s humorous western character Breckenridge Elkins shines in these tongue-in-cheek, tall-tale adventures that form the basis for this 24 story collection of the best of Breck.

The Hour of the Dragon (Annotated with an Essay on the History of the Fantasy Genre)
Yet another digital version of this Conan novel with some sort of essay on the history of fantasy. The author of the essay is not listed and no reviews have appeared on Amazon’s website, so proceed with caution on this one.

Graphic Art:

The Forbidden Kingdom
Girasol Collectables has just published a high quality, offset-printed reproduction of Australian artist Patrick J. Jones’ barbarian masterpiece “The Forbidden Kingdom.” The art print is 16″ x 24″ on sturdy 8pt stock and captures all the magnificent detail of the original.

Coming Soon:

Robert E. Howard: The Battle for the Legacy of Conan
This long delayed volume by Tom Stewart is slated for publication on August 16th is the first in-depth study of the creator of Conan the Barbarian and the inside story about what happened to the character after his creator’s death. The book details the complicated history of the legal battles and intricate story of how Howard’s Barbarian made his way from the pulps, to paperback books, to comics books and ultimately to the big screen.

Conan the Barbarian: The Stories that Inspired the Movie
The contents of  this book have not yet been announced, but the hope is this mass market sampling of Howard’s Conan stories will lead people to buy the three Del Rey Conan trade paperbacks, and perhaps the other nine books in the series that feature other Howard characters and stories. The release of this paperback is set for July 26th. On a related note, Michael Stackpole’s movie novelization will be published on July 5th.

Some News of Coming Attractions from Howard Days:

Christophe Gans, director of Brotherhood of the Wolf and Silent Hill is on board as writer and director for a new Dark Agnes movie. A Kull movie is in the works, as are film adaptations of “Vultures of Wahpeton” and “Pigeons From Hell” – some talk of a Steve Costigan movie as well. Plans are also for a sequel to the Conan movie to premiere in two years. Paradox hopes to keep Momoa busy on another of their films so he doesn’t get tied up making some other movie when the filming begins on the sequel.

A lot of folks have been clamoring for a hardback collection of Jim and Ruth Keegan’s “Two-Gun Bob” comic strips and Dark Horse seems willing to do one once they have 200 strips under their belts – they completed 120, so 80 more to go for the book to come to fruition.

“Spicy Adventures,” with a cover by the Keegans, will be the next book out from the REH Foundation Press, with a number of other items in the pipeline behind it including a multi-volume “Fight Stories“ collection and a biographical book containing Post Oaks & Sand Roughs, along with some of Howard’s other biographical related material. And a much requested fourth edtion of Collected Poetry is in the works as well.

Dennis McHaney will have out soon Illustrating Robert E. Howard, featuring interviews and write-ups on the top Howard illustrators, plus a ton of their artwork in full color.