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The Chessmen of Mars (Large Print) [Paperback]

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Item description for The Chessmen of Mars (Large Print) by Edgar Rice Burroughs...

1922. After a rambunctious youth and series of short-lived jobs including door-to-door salesman, accountant, a peddler for a quack alcoholism cure and finally pencil sharpener wholesaler, Burroughs found his calling as writer. As the story goes, one of Burroughs' duties was to verify the placement of advertisements for his sharpeners in various magazines. These were all-fiction pulp magazines, a prime source of escapist reading material for the expanding middle class. Burroughs spent time reading those magazines and decided he could write those stories just as well. He was lucky his first time out and sold Under the Moon of Mars. The Tarzan series followed this and Burroughs was now a full-fledged writer. In this volume of the Mars series, Helium, a spoiled princess and John Carter's daughter, rejects Gahan, Jed of Gathol, as a suitor and foolishly flies off into a great storm. Gahan gives chase. By the time he finally catches up to Tara, she has forgotten who he is, and he assumes the name Turjun, a panthan mercenary. Together they challenge the power of O-Tar, Jeddak of Manator, whose barbaric nation of Red Men have preyed upon Gathol for centuries. The Manatorians have elevated Jetan, Martian chess, to an unprecedented level of skill and excitement: they use live chessmen who fight for live princesses. Gahan finds himself fighting for Tara on the chessboard of Manator, and haunting O-Tar's palace. See other titles by this author available from Kessinger Publishing.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   504
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.21" Width: 6.14" Height: 1.01"
Weight:   1.54 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 11, 2008
Publisher   Tutis Digital Publishing Pvt. Ltd.
ISBN  8184568630  
ISBN13  9788184568639  

Availability  0 units.

More About Edgar Rice Burroughs

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Edgar Rice Burroughs (1875 1950) was an American writer best known for his creations of the jungle hero Tarzan and the heroic Mars adventurer John Carter."

Edgar Rice Burroughs lived in Chicago, in the state of Illinois. Edgar Rice Burroughs was born in 1875 and died in 1950.

Edgar Rice Burroughs has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Bison Frontiers of Imagination
  2. Dover Thrift Editions
  3. Tarzan (Ballantine)
  4. Word Cloud Classics

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Authors, A-Z > ( B ) > Burroughs, Edgar Rice > General
2Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Authors, A-Z > ( B ) > Burroughs, Edgar Rice > Paperback
3Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > General

Reviews - What do customers think about The Chessmen of Mars (Large Print)?

Super Reader  Aug 8, 2008

A slightly jealous Princess Of Mars stormy aviatrix skipout. Please return.

Which, when it seems that Tara of Helium is in trouble, the smitten young noble from Gathol rushes off to do.

The competent young Princess does ok for a while, but meets a strange race of basically, heads, that use headless bodies to get around.

Then, off to another isolated Martian region that likes to play nasty games of the local chess variety, having pieces duel to the death instead of just be taken.

Evil rulers, nasty old taxidermists, lost passages and rebellion are all to be found here.

3.5 out of 5
good but not quite so good as Princess  Jan 25, 2007
In this novel, Burroughs introduces Tara of Helium, daughter of John Carter, Warlord of Barsoom. Although superficial at first, Tara in time grows up and becomes a very interesting heroine. Unfortunately her coheadliner in the book--Gahan, Jed (king, not prince) of Gathol--is a shallow, impulsive wussbag who falls in love with her as soon as he sees her and spends the rest of the book obsessing over her. While Gahan does engage in some great feats to save the Princess, he is too stupid for the reader to really identify with. (Hello! If everyone seems not to see you after you've just walked into a walled city when you're clearly not one of the locals and are being surreptitiously marched into a prison, it might be time to rethink strategy for entering the city.) Despite the clod of Gahan as hero, though, Ghek the kaldane more than counterbalances him and provides a freshness and zest to the narrative it would otherwise lack. The game of jetan is well described and intriguing, as is Manatorian culture. While he does become likable by the end, Gahan is a major irritant in the story. Had he been someone I could identify better with, I'd have given the book five stars. Four seems appropriate though, given the other narrative strengths.
Tara and Gahan  Sep 29, 2005
This is the fifth book in Edgar Rice Burroughs "Mars" series. This time around, the stars are John Carter's previously unmentioned daughter, Tara; and her love interest, Gahan. This is probably the best book in the series. Tara and Gahan discover some lost cities of Mars, and fall in love. Fans of early science fiction should enjoy this book.
Burroughs' Martian Series is worth remembering and rereading from time to time. I first read these books well over 50 years ago and they, and this book, have lost none of their charm. For the student of SiFi and S&S, these are a must read. Granted, the style is certainly different than todays books, but this is a plus. We need to read and remember it. That being said, these books are just simply fun to read. Recommend them highly.
The most creative of the ERB's pulp fiction Martian yarns  Jun 5, 2004
"The Chessmen of Mars" is the fifth novel in the Edgar Rice Burroughs Martian (a.k.a. John Carter of Mars, Barsoom) series. Originally published serially in "Argosy All-Story Weekly" in 1921 and in hardback the following year it is arguably one of ERB's most imaginative stories. This reputation rests on two things. The first is the relationship between the Kaldanes "heads" and the headless Rykors who are the "descendants of exceedingly stupid humanoid creatures bred by the Kaladane over eons for strength, health, beauty and microcephaly." True, this makes no sense from an evolutionary standpoint, but it is one of the more imaginative parasitic relationships in science fiction history. The second is jetan, the Martian version of chess, which is usually played on a 10 x 10 game board of alternating black and orange squares in the cities of Barsoom, but in the city of Manator is played with living pieces in a giant arena. Of course in the living version of the game a moving piece is not guaranteed a square but has to fight for it.

The framing device for "The Chessmen of Mars" is told by John Carter, Warlord of Barsoom, on a visit home to Earth to see his nephew (rather remarkable given how long it took Carter to get back to Barsoom after his first adventure). Over a game of chess Carter tells of jetan and the adventures of his daughter, Tara of Helium, in Manator. As was the case with the previous Martian novel, "Thuvia, Maid of Mars," ERB introduces a new hero for this adventure in Gahan, Jed of Gathol. The novel opens with the two of them dancing at a royal function in Helium. She has her eyes set on Djor Kantos, sons of her friend's best friend, but he is interested in somebody else. When Gahan declares his love for her, Tara throws a fit and we know these two are meant for each other. Taking her flier on an unadvised flight during a Gale, the princess ends up blown across Barsoom and as happened with both her mother and her sister-in-law, her hero has to track her down and effect a rescue.

The combination of the Kaladanes jumping from one Rykor to the next with the jetan game to the death is quite captivating. For many readers of ERB's pulp fiction yarns "The Chessmen of Mars" is a favorite and while it has the standard hero rescues beloved plot that is a Burroughs staple it is layered with all this interesting stuff. Actually, the romance is the least interesting part of the story. This is far and away the most memorable volume in the Martian series, which is saying something because from start to finish it is ERB's best. With the Tarzan series you can basically leave off once he meets La of Opar, but the Martian series is the one worth reading from start to finish and "Chessmen" is the highpoint.


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