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The Best of Robert E. Howard: Crimson Shadows (Volume 1)

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4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  491 ratings  ·  26 reviews
Robert E. Howard is one of the most famous and influential pulp authors of the twentieth century. Though largely known as the man who invented the sword-and-sorcery genre�and for his iconic hero Conan the Cimmerian�Howard also wrote horror tales, desert adventures, detective yarns, epic poetry, and more. This spectacular volume, gorgeously illustrated by Jim and Ruth K ...more
Paperback, 503 pages
Published August 14th 2007 by Del Rey (first published 2007)
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Jim
This was probably the best collection of his work that I've ever read & I'm pretty conversant with his work. I have over 40 of his books, half being Conan. I think every type of story he wrote was covered & the very best were picked. There were even a couple of stories that I don't think I had read before, which is surprising.

If I have any quarrel with the book, it's the amount of his poetry that is included. It is interspersed among the stories well, but by cutting back on it, perhaps
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Joseph
This volume (especially when paired with The Best of Robert E. Howard: Grim Lands) pretty much does what it sets out to do -- gives a selection of Howard's best work in the many, many genres in which he wrote. You have the better-known stuff -- Kull ("The Shadow Kingdom"), Solomon Kane ("Red Shadows"), Conan (my personal favorite Conan story, "Beyond the Black River") and the lesser-known stuff -- boxing stories, El Borak, historical adventures, Westerns both humorous and non- -- punctuated by s ...more
Mick
I never imagined that the guy who created Conan and Kull was such a fantastic writer, or that I'd really enjoy a Conan story. But I not only loved the Conan stories in this one, I loved Solomon Kane, Frank Gordon, Bran MacMorn, and others. And this also adds to my appreciation of Dictionary of Mu.
Jon
Apr 19, 2013 Jon added it
Recommended to Jon by: Jim MacLachlan
Thomas Fortenberry
I have been watching my local bookstores' shelves explode with reprinting of some pulp era classics, since they went public. Shadow, Doc Savage, Lovecraft, and of course one of my all-time favorite authors, Robert E. Howard.

This new Del Rey collection covers every aspect of his writings, every genre type, major character, and series. Here we have perhaps the best starting point, volume one of "The Best of" collection. I bought one for my brother also.

This volume has a wide-ranging sample of his
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Ron
Jan 03, 2009 Ron rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Ron by: Jon Moss
Robert E. Howard was an extraordinary storyteller. His creations more in that never land between myth, history and lies, and we're not sure where we want them to alight. Frankly, I enjoyed his tales which had one foot in history better than the purer fantasy, but that's me.

Too bad we were robbed of a few more decades of output.
Kevin welter
Howard is Death's poet and a truly masterful writer. He is so much more than Conan but is still arguably at his best in some of those tales.
Kelly Flanagan
Wow. I know I know, by now I shouldn't expect those who opened the genre of Fantasy to have hobbled along lost in the great forest of Magically Inspired Tales. Most of the other genres were around for a while beforehand and I would never imagine that magic is difficult to write about considering the many sub genres have sprung up. Still. The magic in Robert E. Howard's stories is sometimes made by his phenomenal writing skills alone and not just by the wizards, sorceresses and necromancers who p ...more
Will
This collection is excellent, IMO. Honestly, any collection that contains "Beyond The Black River", the quintessential Conan story, is worth it for that alone, but this edition also gives a good overview of the lesser-known genres that Howard wrote in. If you've never read Howard before, and if you think of Conan the Cimmerean as Arnold Schwarzenegger, you really ought to do yourself a favor and check this out.
Michael
This is a great introduction to Robert E. Howard. Although he is best known for creating Conan the Barbarian, he is also the creator of Solomon Kane, El Borak, Kull the Conquerer, Steve Costigan, Bran Mak Morn, and many other characters. This book gives a good sampling of many of his different types of stories, including sword and sorcery, adventure, horror, boxing and western stories. Howard is great at quickly putting you in the middle of the action, and immersing you in the story. Give it a t ...more
Jonathan Stevens
A free offer from Suvudu some time ago. A collection of stories and poem. The stories are great, but I think all of them are available at various public domain ebook sites.
Travis
Gods, the sheer manly power of these stories is like a punch between the eyes!
Howard makes ancient battles come alive, populates his worlds with strong men of honor and surprise you with some bits of quite clever humor.

Howard was one of the guys that created the sword and sorcery genre and even now, 60 years later is still one of the best. These are pure, undiluted adventure stories and they make no pretense at trying to be anything else.

I was surprised by several stories that were in more 'mod
...more
Nesta
Mr Howard was essentially the inventor of the "sword and sorcery" genre and for that, I thank him. His stories are very much a young man's stories; as a woman I found all the mighty thews and such a bit tedious after a while. Also, while of course these things must be considered in their historical context, I found it difficult to get past his comments on the "native savagery" of various races as compared to the mighty, superior Aryans.
Al
I'm a big Conan fan, which is why I tried this book. Unfortunately, I have to say after reading it that Conan is by far the best of Howard, followed by Kull. One has to admire and respect Mr. Howard's output, his breadth of genres, and his imagination, but the quality is decidedly mixed. If you're curious about Howard, by all means give this a try -- just don't go into it with high expectations.
John Curran
Robert E Howard has a wonderful way of describing a detailed scene with very few words. His Conan stories rather spoiled me, in that most other fantasy I encountered seemed overly wordy and full of irrelevant waffle. Those writers can learn a lot from Howard's work.
Steve Bladek
Howard's writing is alway intense no matter the genre in which he was writing. This collection does an admirable job of collecting great stories from Conan, westerns, eastern adventures, humorous pugilists . . . And it's all great stuff.
Takipsilim
A fine and diverse collection of one of the most talented and the most versatile of the great pulp authors. The inconsistent selection highlights Howard's hit-or-miss efforts, but the best are truly inspired.
William
It's a good collection of some of REH's best. The other Del Rey REH books are better though. Go with The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian or The Horror Stories of Robert E. Howard.
Frank
Skipped the modern stories and poetry; the remainder was exciting and fast-paced, if a bit repetitive. I enjoyed the sense of history that emerged from the numerous settings.
Charles
A truly excellent collection. Also of great interest in the article on Howard by Charles Hoffman and the short bio on Howard by Rusty Burke.
Tim
Like a comic book without the pictures -- over-exaggerated characters and thrilling action, but nothing genuinely human. Not bad; just not for me.
Matt
I've only read about half the stories in this thus far, but they were all really entertaining. Especially enjoyed the Solomon Kane tale.
Andre
Meet Conan(Howard?) in different versions and stories. Good 30s pulp literature where everything is "more"...
Bob Wilkins
The stories are all 5 star, but there is a LOT of overlap with all the previous Del Rey books.
Marcus
Feb 04, 2014 Marcus rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2011
Okay, but not as overwhelming as I remembered from my adolescence.
David Hunter
Jun 12, 2010 David Hunter is currently reading it
...another "read at the pub on my iPhone" book...
Ross
Ross marked it as to-read
Dec 26, 2014
Kenneth Bennett
Kenneth Bennett marked it as to-read
Dec 24, 2014
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66700
Robert Ervin Howard was an American pulp writer of fantasy, horror, historical adventure, boxing, western, and detective fiction. Howard wrote "over three-hundred stories and seven-hundred poems of raw power and unbridled emotion" and is especially noted for his memorable depictions of "a sombre universe of swashbuckling adventure and darkling horror."

He is well known for having created — in the p
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More about Robert E. Howard...
The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian (Conan the Cimmerian, #1) The Conquering Sword of Conan (Conan the Cimmerian, #3) Conan of Cimmeria (Conan 2) The Bloody Crown of Conan (Conan the Cimmerian, #2) The Savage Tales of Solomon Kane

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