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The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian (Conan the Cimmerian, #1)
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The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian (Conan the Cimmerian #1)

4.15  ·  Rating Details ·  9,530 Ratings  ·  394 Reviews
Poem and first 13 tales, in order written, plus Miscellanea drafts, notes, maps by author.
Cimmeria poem
1 The Phoenix on the Sword 1932
2 The Frost-Giant's Daughter 1976
3 The God in the Bowl 1952
4 The Tower of the Elephant 1933
5 The Scarlet Citadel 1933
6 Queen of the Black Coast 1934
7 Black Colossus 1933
8 Iron Shadows in the Moon 1934
9 Xuthal of the Dusk 1933
10 The Pool of
Hardcover, 496 pages
Published November 22nd 2005 by Del Rey (first published 2002)
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Farseer Yes, it is a good place. These are the original Robert E. Howard tales, unedited and in the order he wrote them. This is book 1 of the complete R. E.…moreYes, it is a good place. These are the original Robert E. Howard tales, unedited and in the order he wrote them. This is book 1 of the complete R. E. Howard Conan stories. The three books are:

The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian (Conan the Cimmerian, #1)
The Bloody Crown of Conan (Conan the Cimmerian, #2)
The Conquering Sword of Conan (Conan the Cimmerian, #3) (less)
Roger Blakesley This book is an excellent place to start reading Conan. Conan should be read as Howard wrote it, not in chronological order or in outline form or with…moreThis book is an excellent place to start reading Conan. Conan should be read as Howard wrote it, not in chronological order or in outline form or with Oxford Professor niceties in play. Howard wrote Conan as if he were in the room dictating.

In some ways you can say much of modern fantasy is footnotes to Howard. Doors are often "oaken" and girdles are not ladies' underwear in Howard's world, however.(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Bill  Kerwin

Having finally decided to read Robert E. Howard's Conan stories, I am glad I had the good fortune to purchase the three volume, fully illustrated, Del Rey collection. Unlike the numerous Lancer/Ace paperbacks available to me in the '60's and '70's—the ones with the really cool Frank Frazetta illustrations--this edition does things right.

One of the reasons I never explored Conan's world is that every Lancer/Ace volume I examined in the bookstore sported the name of at least two authors, sometimes
J.G. Keely
What it is that makes Howard so much more compelling than his many imitators? To the untrained eye, it may be hard to see differences, since his faults are sometimes more readily apparent than his virtues, though he has plenty of both. Some might try to 'salvage him' from his pulp origins, but despite all his literary aspirations, I'm happy to call him a pulp author, and one of the best.

I have a great deal of praise for this edition in particular, volume one of a three-part series which collects

*** NOTE: Lesson number 4 above was inspired by Ceridwen’s legendary review of Ulysses and the even more legendary comment section following it....The Guest Speaker doesn't know it but the real goal of lesson #4 is to help the instructors spot and weed out incurable ASSHATS.

5.0 stars. This was my first in depth experience with Robert E. Howard’s Conan and IT…….WAS…….PULPTASTICALLY ……DELICIOUS. However, not only was it more fun than a dungeon full of giant snakes, but it was also very instructiv
Sep 18, 2012 Forrest rated it really liked it
I've now discovered that the best way to read Robert E. Howard's Conan stories is in big, undiluted doses. Do yourself a favor and avoid any of the stories completed or edited by L. Sprague de Camp. Trust me, you'll be glad you did. And don't dip your toes into Conan's world, plunge into it headfirst and stay a while. Taken as individual snacks, each Conan story has its sweet spots and its bitter bits. But taken as a meal, several Conan stories can provide a rich feast.

The Coming of Conan the C
[Name Redacted]
Conan is one of those great literary characters whose true nature has been swallowed up in the morass of media reinterpretation. Howard's Conan the Cimmerian is a giant of a man, yes, but he is not the lumbering bear he later became in the popular consciousness; Schwarzenegger is not to blame for that, as this understanding had become the common one long before his films were made (check out the earlier comic book versions), and he merely played the character as the script demanded. Howard's Con ...more
Jan 09, 2016 Randy is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Collection of early Conan stories including:

- Cimmeria - 3/5 - brief poem describing Conan's homeland
- The Phoenix on the Sword - 4/5 - Conan's first appearance is a Game-of-Thrones-esque plot to overthrow the barbarian king
- The Frost-Giant's Daughter - 3/5 - initially rejected for publication and eventually published posthumously, this brief tale exhibits mythological elements of Conan's world
- God in the bowl - 3/5 - Also rejected during Howard's lifetime, this story is...a locked-room myste
Jul 11, 2008 Terry rated it really liked it
You know, I used to think I hated Conan stories. That was before I realized that what I had read were in fact imperfect pastiches written by other writers in the 60's and 70's who hoped to cash in on the iconic popularity of the character.

This volume presents the stories of Conan the Cimmerian as they were written by his creator, Robert E. Howard, and a better group of dashing, creepy, brooding sword & sorcery tales couldn't be wished for. The stories are presented in the order they were wri
Dec 06, 2016 LPG rated it really liked it
Oh Conan. I was wrong about you, and I am so very thrilled that I was.

You're not a macho fantasy devoid of interesting ideas that I'd always cast you as. Instead you're the meeting point between the childhood hot cocoa of sword and sorcery tales, and some dark and strange new way of telling stories. You lulled me with a world full of ancient mysterious ruins, bustling desert towns, and cosmic glittering treasure. Around every corner lurks another pretty girl, or evil sorcerer, or a band of ruthl
Hither came Conan, the Cimmerian, black-haired, sullen-eyed, sword in hand, a thief, a reaver, a slayer, with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandalled feet.

I’ve finally come around to reading sword and sorcery, and by Crom, Conan was the perfect entrance!

Conan has always been synonymous with Arnold Schwarzenegger in my mind, but that’s all been changed now that I’ve read Robert E. Howard’s original creation. I wish I could put do
Apr 06, 2008 Old-Barbarossa rated it really liked it
They've re-released a load of Howard's stuff after it's been out of print for ages, I used to pick it up at bookstalls and second hand bookshops. Great stuff, not very politically correct but hugely enjoyable fast paced stories, mainly all swordfights and heaving bosoms, dark sorcery and cavalry charges, betrayal and lusty gossamer clad dancing girls. He's most famous for these, his "Conan" stories. That was when I was about 14...probably explains a lot. Imprinted with idea that drinking heavily ...more
Apr 20, 2012 Jean-marcel rated it really liked it
This is huge, terrific, blood-and-thunder stuff of the highest order. The real Conan, not the sanitised version of De Camp or the movies, even though I enjoy the 1982 film for what it is. While at times unbelievable deeds of heroes in stories can be irritating because of a lack of realism, it was these tales that made me decide the difference is all in the quality of writing rather than the likelihood of the acts themselves. After a while you just get so used to rolling with the style of Howard' ...more
This is the first time I have ever read (listened) to a series of Conan stories that were all by Robert E. Howard, undiluted by his imitators and diminishers, and what a revelation. Howard's work was not the pulpy trash of his followers; it was accomplished, vital, deep and rich in characterization, and some of the finest world building ever achieved. It was that thing I love most: a novel in short stories.

Listening to this collection, one gets a full picture of Howard's Cimmerian. Not the "bar
Mike (the Paladin)
Sep 27, 2009 Mike (the Paladin) rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
What needs to be said? It's Conan. If you've only seen the yourself a favor and take a look at these pulp greats.

Like many Conan is one of my first introductions into fantasy and Conan personifies the Sword and Sorcery sub-genre of fantasy. He was great to read when Howard came up with him and he's still a great read today.

This is volume one of a three volume set released with Howard's original texts. It contains:
"The Phoenix on the Sword"
"The Frost Giant's Daughter"
"The God in the
Stefan Yates
Feb 01, 2012 Stefan Yates rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Overall - I really enjoyed this first volume of the collected short stories of Robert E. Howard and his magnificent creation; Conan the Barbarian. There was not a story in the collection that I was bored with or disliked and I would heartily encourage those who enjoy the fantasy genre to delve into these stories and explore the roots of what started the genre that we enjoy today. The only faults that I have with Howard’s writing are the prevalent sexist and less prevalent racist attitudes that a ...more
I find most of the really productive pulp writers to be very inconsistent in their output (see also Philip K. Dick) and Robert E. Howard is no exception. The better stories in this anthology are among some of the best ultra-manly adventure stories I've ever read, the writing managing to be ornate and bombastic without ever feeling bloated or "purple". The setting, which draws mostly upon Greco-Roman antiquity as viewed from the outsider perspective of a Celtic tribesman (or the fantasy equivalen ...more
Sep 06, 2007 Peggy rated it it was amazing
Long years ago, I picked up an old collection of Conan stories. It was from the series that L. Sprague deCamp did, and was number one in the series. I was unimpressed. I figured I had simply waited too long to get around to Conan and outgrown the time period when I might have enjoyed the stories. I was so, so wrong.

This collection blew me away. Robert E. Howard was an amazing writer, especially when it comes to action scenes. These stories move, man. I went from unimpressed to fangirl in 2 stori
Feb 19, 2013 Nate rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
This omnibus-thingy collects thirteen of Howard's original Conan stories as well as some cool miscellanea like poems, maps, rough drafts of a couple of the stories, etc. Okay, I came into this expecting (and desiring) pure pulpy cheesiness, and I definitely got some of that, but I was really struck with how literary and modern-feeling Howard's prose is. Honestly, the language in these stories really felt like it hadn't dated at all, even though most of these stories were written in the early 193 ...more
Average Rating Across All Stories: 3.5 stars

The two best stories are "The Phoenix on the Sword" and "The Queen of the Black Coast"; otherwise, the first half of this anthology holds the best of the bunch, gradually dwindling down to my least favorite two stories: "The Vale of Lost Women" and "Rogues in the House." The final story almost redeemed the second half, but didn't quite pack the punch necessary to overcome the duds immediately prior to it. Please see my status update comments for mini-r
Tim Dale
Jul 10, 2015 Tim Dale rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Conan has alway been my favorite. Collected all the comics and read them for years. Finally read the original source and see why Conan has survived all these years. Great stories and great writing. Robert E. Howard knew how to describe a fight scene.
Mar 22, 2016 Adam rated it did not like it
At some point in my childhood, I probably would have really enjoyed these stories. They aspire to scratch an itch I definitely had at the time, a militaristic presentation of ancient history with a mythological flair. It reminds me of the days I spent ogling the Atlas of World Military History, devising pantheons that were really just cheap riffs on Classical mythologies, and reading much better fantasy. Later works that built on Howard’s foundation but took it in much better directions: things ...more
A collection that introduces the original Robert E Howard Conan, in all his muscled, fighting, warring, wenching, pirating, murdering, thieving, raping, racist glory.

The Phoenix on the Sword
It's interesting that the first Conan story Howard published placed him as King of Aquilonia (though a former Barbarian), since our popular image of him is the peripatetic thief, rogue & reaver. This isn't the only King Conan story in the collection, either.

The beginning of this particular story, in which
Jul 23, 2010 Benjamin added it
Shelves: audiobook
The Conan stories of Robert E. Howard probably aren't for everyone, and that's a damn shame.

Today, Howard's contribution to fantasy has been obscured or tainted by three things (I would argue):

a) when people look back at early-20th century adventure fantasy, Burroughs is the writer they see. This is certainly the case in academia--I've seen papers on Tarzan and John Carter of Mars, but hardly any on Conan and none on Solomon Kane. In fandom, there is an Edgar Rice Burroughs club, but I'm not a
Ignacio Senao f
Jun 19, 2016 Ignacio Senao f rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Primer tomo de 3. La trilogía definitiva de todo lo concerniente a Conan y su autor hacia él. Con más de 500 páginas de papel couche. Formato grande y tapa dura forrada de tela. Una joya muy cara merecidamente. Sus ilustraciones no son de gran arte pero hay muchas, y a veces se prefiere gran cantidad de imágenes que una muy buena. Haya mapas de las tierras narradas, que realmente son fotos de los originales. Un gran apéndice con todo lo imaginable. Sinopsis, borradores, versiones anteriores, boc ...more
Jun 23, 2012 Charles rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
A collection of the Conan stories as they were orignally meant to be published by Robert E. Howard himself, without all the added, and less than stellar material, inserted by L. Sprague de Camp and Lin Carter. In addition to carrying all the published Conan stories, there are also fragments and early drafts in the back of the book that are fascinating for the scholar. Highly recommended.
An Odd1
Jan 24, 2015 An Odd1 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: action, fan
I'm caught. Despite repetitive plot devices, requisite (nearly) naked white women pursued by black monster, the words flow like poetry and drown me deep. Boogle these big books meant to be read as written, once monthly in magazine; tales lose vitality if forced swallowing in single gulp, time too brief. Chronology ordered by Conan's age rather than year of publication, is a big relief; would be brain swoggle, switching old man to young and around.

"Conan yelled stridently and struck them like a
Rick Slane
Adventure and swordplay abound in these slightly old-fashioned seeming tales.
Eric Fomley
Mar 26, 2017 Eric Fomley rated it it was amazing
A phenomenal collection of brutal sword and sorcery stories about the great Conan the Barbarian. I listen to the Audible version and was mesmerized the entire way through. Phenomenal character and stories. I highly recommend this to any sword and sorcery fans.
Dec 30, 2011 Jacqui rated it liked it
Reading Conan, it's really, REALLY important to keep in the back of your mind that these stories were written in the early twentieth century, which was a vastly different period than our own. By keeping that in mind, I was able to read through the majority of this book without taking the blatant racism and sexism too much to heart. I see the stories contained it The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian much in the same way I see exploitation film; it is a relic of its time, and thus it is populated wit ...more
Kyle Muntz
Mar 01, 2015 Kyle Muntz rated it really liked it
I almost can't believe it, but (since my roommate loaned me a copy of this book), I read a few of the stories and they were actually really good. They definitely show their pulp roots, but the Hyperborian Age (a kind of proto-history full of Lovecraftian, cosmological awesomeness, and strong roots in history and mythology) is incredibly rich, and the character himself is way more interesting than his reputation. I don't think I can commit to the whole book, but it was nice to get a sense of the ...more
Jan 20, 2010 Tristan rated it really liked it
Shelves: weird-fantasy
Robert E. Howard wrote without using much other than his emotion and imagination. That is what these books are filled with and if you are up to a passionate and driven read, than look no further for Conan is here! These books are animal-like in their power, Howard takes you back to a time where humanity was far more savage and the rest of the world reflected that. There is an energy that drives each of these stories and it doesn't stop until the last words of the last story have stopped echoing ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
  • Conan, Vol. 1: The Frost Giant's Daughter and Other Stories
  • The Savage Sword of Conan, Volume 1
  • Ill Met in Lankhmar (Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, #1-2)
  • Conan of Aquilonia (Book 11)
  • Jirel of Joiry
  • Darkness Weaves
  • The End of the Story
  • Conan the Magnificent (Conan, #5)
  • Elric
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
More about Robert E. Howard...

Other Books in the Series

Conan the Cimmerian (3 books)
  • The Bloody Crown of Conan (Conan the Cimmerian, #2)
  • The Conquering Sword of Conan (Conan the Cimmerian, #3)

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“Wenn das Leben eine Illusion ist, dann bin ich es nicht weniger, und somit ist die Illusion für mich Wirklichkeit.” 1 likes
“He was no defensive fighter; even in the teeth of overwhelming odds he always carried the war to the enemy.” 1 likes
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